Bears’ 22-year-old next-generation infielder hopes to spark Jamsil black hairband boom

There’s a 22-year-old next-generation infielder who’s been spotted wearing a black headband at the Doosan Bears’ 2024 spring training camp. That’s infielder Myung-jin Oh. Oh has emerged as a dark horse for the backup infield spot in the 2024 spring training. With Park Min-woo as his role model, could he spark the Jamsil hairband boom?

Born in 2001, Oh Myung-jin graduated from Sekwang High School and was selected by Doosan with the 59th overall pick in the second round of the 2020 KBO draft.

Oh made his first-team debut in June 2020 as a special entry in a doubleheader. After appearing in five games in 2020 (four at-bats and no hits), Oh played just two games in 2021 (three at-bats and no hits) before being called up to active duty in late May 2022.

Oh Myung-jin, who was discharged from the military this winter, was included in the first team spring training roster. He is an infielder who specializes in hitting rather than defense, and is considered to be a great addition to Doosan’s thin infield depth.

Doosan head coach Park Heung-sik also gave Oh a thumbs-up during the camp, saying, “As far as natural hitting qualities go, he’s a really good player.”

“Head coach Park Heung-shik told me that I reminded him of Park Min-woo,” said Oh Myung-jin, who met him at the Miyazaki camp. I think it would be great if I could become like him (laughs). I don’t have a big body, but my strength is making a strong hit. My coaches also told me to keep my batting in check because there’s nothing to worry about. I’m confident that I can do well once I get more experience in practice.”

Oh Myung-jin is spending his first spring training overseas. Along with rookie outfielder Jeon Damin, who is the same age as him, he has gotten used to being the youngest member of the group.

“This is my first overseas spring training camp. Fortunately, I have (Jeon) Damin, who is the same age as me, so we are doing our best to be the youngest (laughs). When I came out, I felt nervous and wanted to do better. Before the army, I was just doing my best, but now I feel responsible. Above all, I am satisfied that I was able to learn a lot about hitting and defense from good infielders 안전놀이터 like Kim Jae-hwan, Heo Kyung-min, Park Joon-young, and Park Kye-beom,” he said.

Myung-Jin Oh is preparing for the season as a utility player who can play all positions in the infield. The defensive position he is most confident in is second base.

“I’m trained to play second base, shortstop, and third base, but I’m most confident in my defense at second base. I feel most comfortable defending second base to utilize my strength, which is hitting. Of course, I’m prepared to play any defensive position. I’m working hard with coach Cho Sung-hwan,” he said encouragingly.

Oh Myung-jin has only played in the first team’s home games during the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition to playing in front of the Jamsil Stadium crowd, Oh hopes that the black hairband he wears during camp will become his trademark.

“When I saw some Doosan fans come to the Miyazaki practice game, it was a different feeling. I hope the day will come when I can show my skills in front of the Jamsil Stadium crowd. Also, since the Australia camp, I’ve been wearing a hairband that Jun-young (Park) bought with his brother, and I’ve been using it comfortably whenever I sweat. I hope this black hairband will become my trademark in my bedroom,” he smiled.

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