“I want to throw a starter.” The player who everyone was surprised by, SSG, heads to Sangmu

In the middle of last year, the coaching staff of the SSG Futures Team (second division) heard a surprising story during an interview with Lee Ki-soon (SSG). Lee has expressed his intention to pitch as a starting pitcher. Lee was not a player that the club had considered a starting pitcher since the time of his nomination. Since then, the direction of his development has been the bullpen. There was not an immediate vacancy in the starting lineup. Rather, it could have been better to show his talent in the bullpen.유흥알바

However, Lee’s will was firm. He did not necessarily mean that he would change to a starting pitcher. He wanted to throw as many pitches as possible, regardless of his position. He tried to find an answer by throwing. The coaching staff, who read Lee’s intention and thoughts, also allowed him a chance to start the game. There were days when he could not throw five innings, but he pitched silently for even three or four innings, trying to find his way.

If Lee had settled down, his 2024 year could have passed without much income. However, throwing as a starting pitcher could have been a turning point in his baseball career. Regarding his desire for a starting position, Lee said, “I didn’t know which one was right for me because I was just doing the middle part. I was able to prepare while exercising as the starting pitcher had a fixed date. That’s how I learned a little bit. I also learned how to manage myself physically. I think 2023 has improved a lot compared to 2022.”

Going to the starting lineup probably meant that there would be no more opportunities in the first team in 2023. There was no immediate plan to use Lee as the starting lineup. However, Lee made the decision by looking far away. And that experience has continued to impress the team’s coaching staff in 2024. His advantage of being able to throw long was appealing, and he successfully secured the opportunity on the mound of his team, which was in a mess due to injury and sluggishness.

Lee, who graduated from Dongsan High School and was drafted in the second round of the SSG’s second round (42nd overall) in 2022, is a player of small physique (174 centimeters, 74 kilograms). His speed is not that fast either. His four-seam fastball speed does not exceed 140 kilometers per hour. However, he has drawn attention for his outstanding vertical movement since his amateur days. He means he has strength at the end of the ball. SSG named Lee based on Kim Jae-woong (Kium), who has similar physical conditions and similar strengths.

Although he was selected as a bullpen, he was able to differentiate himself from the Futures team’s long pitching experience last year. He couldn’t go to the first Florida field training because he was accepted by the South Korean military athletic unit (Sangju Sangmu), but he caught the eye of the coaching staff of the first team at the Taiwan camp, and is currently active in the first team this year. Although he is not a position that shines, he has played as a starter, and is also in the position of being attached to the latter when his starting lineup collapses early.

He pitched 19 ⅔ in 10 games this season, recording one win, one loss and a 3.66 ERA, which left him with a decent performance. Reducing the number of walks is a task, but his ball power is recognized as he has only 0.174. At the game against Kiwoom in Gocheok on the 2nd, he took the mound four times following starter Park Jong-hoon and enjoyed his first win since his debut by laying the foundation for his team’s victory until the fifth inning.

Lee will join the Sangmu team as scheduled. Although Lee failed to complete the team in the first division this year, it is a great achievement to confirm that he is growing as expected by the coaching staff and his club. He is considered a versatile player after discharge if he throws a lot at the Sangmu team and polishes his weapons. Attention is focusing on whether Lee, who has not settled down in his position and boldly chosen a challenge to set up a small foothold, will be able to discharge from the military with a bigger foothold than this.

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