April 07, 2011 09:23
Choo Shin-soo of the Cleveland Indians is not the only player of Korean descent in Major League Baseball. Hyun Choi Conger, or Hank Conger, is making a name for himself with the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim.
The 23-year-old catcher started in an away game against the Tampa Bay Rays on Tuesday and opened the second inning with a solo home run. It was his first homer in the big leagues after 30 at-bats in 14 games.
After sitting the bench for the first four games of this season, Conger made his first starting game of the year stand out with one hit, the home run, in four at-bats, and showed superb chemistry with ace pitcher Jered Weaver. The Angels won the game 5-3.
Conger is a third-generation Korean American, and both of his parents are of Korean descent. His father took the surname Conger when he was adopted by his American uncle at the age of six. Hank’s name was chosen by his grandfather Adrian Conger, who hoped that the boy would take after the legendary batter Hank Aaron.
First playing baseball at age nine, Conger quickly showed talent and went on to play for the U.S. youth baseball team while attending Huntington Beach High School in Huntington Beach, California. After graduating from high school, he was picked in the first round of the 2006 draft by the Angels. Standing 185cm tall and weighing 100kg, he is a versatile switch hitter.
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