Whatever the situation, the KIA Tigers’ choice was “him.
The 2023 season was an exceptionally busy one for right-handed sidearm Im Ki-young, 31. Anchoring the bullpen, he was used in all-weather roles, including chase and closer, as well as a backup starter. In 64 games and 82 innings pitched, he had a record of 4-4, 3 saves, 16 holds, and a 2.96 ERA. Last year was the first time he had appeared in more than 30 games in a season. Only Noh Kyung-eun (SSG Landers-83 innings) pitched more innings in the bullpen last year than Lim.
Just one season ago, Lim’s position was a starter. Since breaking into the Kia first team in 2017, he’s been a regular starter. In 2021, when KIA slipped to ninth place, he was the team’s ace with a team-high eight wins. In 2022, the team struggled, 카지노사이트 finishing with a 4-13 record, but he pitched 129⅓ innings and helped the team reach the top five.
He then moved to the bullpen. Rookie pitcher Yoon Young-chul stepped up.
With two foreign starters, Yang Hyun-jong (36) and Lee Yi-ri (22), there was only one spot left in the Kia lineup for a fifth starter. KIA wanted to secure this spot through a competition between existing players Lim Ki-young and Yoon Young-chul. Yoon won the fifth starter’s spot with a better-than-expected fastball. Of course, this choice didn’t mean that Lim lost out, as the focus was not only on his excellent innings, but also on his specialty as a “submarine” and his versatility as a bullpen and substitute starter. In fact, it was the key to the KIA mound in 2023.
Moving a pitcher from one position to another, especially a starter to the bullpen, is not something that is easy to accept. Unlike starting pitchers, who have routines, rest periods, and long breaths to get through a game, the bullpen is a constant state of tension, never knowing when the call will come. You have to put everything you have into one inning, one batter, and it’s often a clutch situation that can make the difference between a win and a loss. It was even harder for Lim, who had been a starter since joining KIA.
However, he fulfilled his role without saying a word.
Whenever the team was in crisis, he took the mound regardless of the situation. He pitched in all 64 games as a reliever, but had 26 multi-inning appearances. Five times he went three innings or more.
This season, it’s likely that Lim will still be starting out of the bullpen.
KIA has a solid five-star system. The troika of Yang Hyun-jong, Lee Yi-ri, and Yoon Young-chul is the same as last year. Add in newcomer Will Crowe and a new foreign pitcher to be announced soon, and all five spots are filled. 카지노사이트 추천 The bullpen, however, needs to be broken down into a pennant chase group, with the exception of closer Jung Hae-young (23). Securing alternate starters to back up the starters during the pennant race is also a challenge. Given last year’s use of Lim Ki-young, which focused on “management,” it is likely that he will continue to be used in the bullpen for most of the season, but also for multiple innings.
Whenever there were concerns about fatigue accumulation last year, Lim said, “It’s okay because the team is managing it well,” and “This is the role I was given. I’m just trying to do my best,” he said cheerfully. Kia will be looking to him this year as well, as he has proven himself to be ‘team first’.