In his introductory interview Jan. 5, 2021, Kim said, “The main reason I joined the Padres is the Padres are not only a contender, but the Padres will become a World Series champion this year. I want to be part of a winning team. That’s why I joined the Padres.”...In 2019, played in the WBSC Premier12 (World Baseball Softball Confederation) at which Team Korea won silver and qualified for the Tokyo Olympic Games...Kim and OF Jung-hoo Lee were Korea’s representatives on the All World Team named after the tournament...Attended Yatap High School in Seongnam, from which he was drafted by the Nexen Heroes in 2014...Respects Chan Ho Park, who gave Kim advice about playing in the United States for the first time.
Made his Major League debut April 1, 2021, vs. ARI, pinch hitting in the T-7th (struck out swinging)...logged his first MLB hit, multi-hit game, and RBI in his next appearance April 3 vs. ARI, going 2-for-4 with an RBI...Posted by the KBO's Kiwoom Heroes on Dec. 7, 2020... signed a four-year contract with SD on Dec. 31, 2020, becoming the Padres' 1st Korean-born position player...Entered 2021 rated as the No. 78 prospect in all of baseball by Baseball America and No. 86 by ESPN...Baseball America also ranked Kim as the Padres' No. 5 overall prospect and their second-highest ranked infield prospect, behind just SS CJ Abrams...His 2.1 defensive WAR was the third-highest in the National League per Baseball Reference, behind just COL's Ryan McMahon (2.5) and PIT's Jacob Stallings (2.3)... Had a season-long five-game hitting streak from May 17-23, batting .316 (6-for-19) with three 2B, one 3B and four RBI...had a season-long seven-game on-base streak (reaching via hit, walk, or hit-by-pitch) from May 15-23...The Padres were 59-58 in games in which he appeared and 38-25 in games in which he started...Hit .222 vs. left-handers (18-for-81) with seven 2B and two HR and hit .194 (36-for-186) vs. right-handers with five 2B, two 3B and six HR...Posted a .719 OPS at Petco Park, while posting just a .530 OPS on the road...Slugged .406 vs. NL West opponents (5 2B and 4 HR)...Made 40 appearances as a pinch hitter, batting .114 (4-for35) with a home run and four walks...His three outs above average tied with Adam Frazier and Manny Machado for the highest among Padres' infielders, and was T-2nd on the team behind Trent Grisham's six OAA...In the field, made appearances at second base (21 games and 20 starts), third base (23 games and 18 starts) and shortstop (35 games and 25 starts)...made five errors.
Played 138 games with the Kiwoom Heroes of the Korean Baseball Organization (KBO), appearing in 96 games at shortstop and 55 games at third base... Hit .306 (163-for-533) with a career-high 30 HR, .397 OBP, .921 OPS, 24 2B, 109 RBI, 23 SB, 111 runs scored and 75 walks to just 68 strikeouts... Led his club in HR, RBI and runs scored, and among all KBO players, Kim ranked 3rd in runs scored, 5th in stolen bases, 6th in walks, 8th in total bases (279), 9th in RBI, 10th in HR, 11th in hits and OPS, 12th in AVG and 13th in SLG (.523)...His walk-to-strikeout rate in 2020 in the KBO, more than double his first full season in 2015, when he walked 56 times and struck out 115 times... At 25, he was the youngest player among the top 10 homerun hitters in the KBO in 2020...Mel Rojas Jr. led with 47 HR, and former MLB players Preston Tucker (32), Jamie Romak (32) and Aaron Altherr (31) finished ahead of Kim, who ranked 9th in the league... Prior to his posting, was ranked by FanGraphs as their No. 8 highest rated free agent in 2021... Was officially posted by the KBO's Kiwoom Heroes on December 7, 2020...Signed his 4-year contract with the Padres on December 31, 2020... Entering 2021, ranked by Baseball America as the Padres' No. 5 overall prospect and their 2nd-highest ranked infield prospect (behind C.J. Abrams).