Even the red waves that filled the baseball field could not stop the ‘Lotte Killer’. Kim Gwang-hyeon (35, SSG Landers) showed off his pitching without hesitation even in front of a crowd of opponents.
SSG won 5-0 in the 2023 Shinhan Bank SOL KBO league away game against Lotte Giants held at Sajik Baseball Stadium in Busan on the 20th. With this, SSG succeeded in avenging the previous day’s defeat and bringing Lotte back from the lead.
Sajik Stadium, where the match was held, was sold out early. The home team, Lotte, is showing an upward trend, such as rising to the top spot, and an event was held on the 20th to give all spectators entry-level uniforms on a first-come, first-served basis. As a result, all 22,990 seats were sold through advance reservations, and Lotte fans were filled with enthusiasm.
SSG was also worried about the overwhelming atmosphere. Before the game, SSG coach Kim Won-hyeong (51) commented on the previous day’s game (5-7 loss), saying, “(In the game on the 19th) I feel like I’m under pressure.” At the same time, he added, “It seems that the players can’t ignore the atmosphere either.”
However, coach Kim had a card he believed in. It was Kim Gwang-hyun, the starter that day. Coach Kim asserted, “The difference in atmosphere (home and away) is a gwanghyeon, so we have to overcome it.” Next, coach Kim, who recalled his days as a player, said, “If you go up with one-sided support, you will have a fighting spirit like ‘You guys should cheer, I will just block it’.”
Also, Kim Kwang-hyun is showing a strong performance against Lotte. Since becoming the winning pitcher in a home game on May 27, 2015 with 6 hits, 5 strikeouts and no runs in 6 innings, he has been running for 10 consecutive wins against Lotte alone. During the same period, SSG took the lead with 14 wins, 1 draw and 2 losses.
As soon as the match started, the true value of Kim Kwang-hyun began to be revealed. He cleanly blocked his first inning with a three-way offense, and did not allow a single on-base against the Lotte batters during one lap of the batting order. In the third inning, he struck out all of Kim Min-soo, Park Seung-wook, and Shin Yun-hoo. Instead of the slider, which is his main weapon, he used a changeup and curveball as the deciding ball, and caught Lotte’s batting line by surprise. Even in a crowded crowd, the pitching that did not shake at all stood out.
In the meantime, SSG took the lead with Kim Min-shik’s timely double hit following an opponent’s error in the third inning, and Kim Gwang-hyun’s shoulder was lightened by adding two points with Kim Seong-hyun’s timely hit and Lee Jeong-beom’s sacrifice fly in the beginning of the fourth inning. Kim Gwang-hyun got his first hit from Yoon Dong-hee after one out in the 4th inning, but ended the inning without conceding a run.안전놀이터
Kim Gwang-Hyun’s good pitching continued in the 5th and 6th innings, and he did not allow a base for two innings. Kim Gwang-hyun, who made a good pitch, finished the mound by replacing Noh Kyung-eun in defense at the end of the 7th inning, although the number of pitches was not high at 88.
On this day, Kim Gwang-hyun showed off a good pitch with 6 innings, 1 hit, 9 strikeouts and no runs. He also dropped his season earned run average from 4.08 to 3.48. The nine strikeouts Kim Gwang-hyun caught on this day were the most personal records this season. Afterwards, Noh Kyung-eun, Koh Hyo-jun, and Moon Seung-won blocked the remaining 3 innings well, and Kim Gwang-hyun achieved 3 wins in the season and continued his 11th consecutive win against Lotte.