Shirakawa, who stopped the tiger, secured the ‘starter’ after 8 runs

Alternative foreign pitcher Keisho Shirakawa (23, SSG Landers) has virtually passed the “starting test.”

Shirakawa took the mound as a starting pitcher at the match against the Kia Tigers in Incheon on Tuesday, allowing three hits and one run in five innings, and led the team to a 7-1 win. He had two walks and five strikeouts, respectively, and Shirakawa, who won his second game (one loss) of this season, lowered his ERA from 9.95 to 6.35.안전놀이터

Shirakawa, who was hired as a substitute for Roenis Elias for six weeks, received attention after winning his KBO League debut game (against the Kiwoom Heroes on the 1st, five scoreless innings). However, he collapsed significantly in an away game against the Lotte Giants (eight runs allowed in 1 1/3 innings on the 7th). As a native of the Japanese independent league, he did not have much experience in major games, which made him difficult to adjust to. On the 11th, SSG manager Lee Soong-yong also hinted at the possibility of a change of position, saying, “I think I will have to think about it after seeing him throw it on Thursday (against KIA on the 13th).”

Shirakawa silenced Kia’s robust lineup, which had 16 hits in the previous day and scored 13 runs. Out of 91 pitches, the ratio of fastballs (57) to curves (21) was 85.7 percent, which was effectively close to a two-pitch. It was a repertoire of pitches that could have been monotonous, but KIA batters facing Shirakawa for the first time struggled hard to target. In the top of the second inning, Shirakawa returned Choi Hyung-woo, Na Sung-bum, and Lee Woo-sung to three outs, but both pitched in the innings (18) were fastballs (12) and curves (6). He targeted the strike zone simply and aggressively.

He also allowed the least number of runs in the crisis. After being driven to the first and second bases with a walk and hit after one out in the top of the third inning when his team was tying 0-0. However, with runners at the first and third bases with two outs, Lee Chang-jin allowed his first run with a double to the left field. Kim Do-young, who boasted his sense of hitting to the max, took the batter’s box with runners at the second and third bases with two outs. Shirakawa only threw four fastballs, and grounded out to shortstop to prevent additional run loss.

In the top of the fourth inning with two outs and runners on the first and second bases, Kim mixed a fork ball to induce Kim to hit an infield grounder. In the fifth inning, he added a fastball, a curveball, a forkball, and a slider to block Seo Geon-chang, Park Chan-ho, and Lee Chang-jin with three outs. SSG’s batters made a come-from-behind 5-1 by scoring five runs including Han Yu-seom’s three-run homer in the bottom of the fifth inning, creating a winning pitcher requirement for Shirakawa, and Lee immediately started the bullpen in the sixth inning.

Coach Lee Soo-yong, who considered changing his position with Shirakawa, said after the game, “Shirakawa showed better pitching than expected. I think the poor performance of the last game became a good medicine and I prepared well,” adding, “It was a game that showed my strengths without being nervous.”

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