SSG, who has won the Korean Series five times since 2007, had nothing to envy other teams, at least in terms of their performance during this period. However, the thirst for promising players was not small. While others were cheering for the ‘super rookie’, SSG played a baseball that relied relatively heavily on veterans.
Because their grades were consistently good, they were pushed to the lower ranks in the rookie draft, and to make matters worse, the Incheon farm was also not good compared to other regions. In other words, it was not possible to obtain a ‘special express’. In recent years, giving newcomers ample time and going through the process of building their bodies has been the team’s keynote먹튀검증. There were not many cases where new high school graduates started playing in April of the first year of their debut. It was the standard of this team that long-standing players went through military service and gradually matured and took the starting position.
But this year, fans don’t have to envy other teams’ prospects. Rather, it is because SSG’s 1st and 2nd rounders are making a big success at the beginning of the season and are ahead of the rookies of other teams. Right-hander Lee Rowoon, the first-round nominee, and right-hander Song Young-jin, the second-round nominee, are doing their best to push the team’s good performance from behind. In the history of SSG, it is difficult to find an example where two high school graduates are so active since April.
On the 13th, following Lee Ro-wun’s 3 innings, 1 hit, 4 strikeouts, and no runs against Samsung in Daegu, Song Young-jin, who started on behalf of Kim Gwang-hyun, who was on the injured list due to shoulder inflammation, perfectly blocked the NC lineup, which was on the rise, on the 14th. debut win Song Young-jin, who showed potential with his long relief, gave up 3 balls on 4 balls in 5 innings that day, while not getting a single hit, while striking out 7 and leading the team to a 2-1 victory with a scoreless reverse pitch.
In the history of the Wyverns-Landers franchise, it is the first time since Lee Seung-ho in 2005 that a high school graduate rookie has won a starting debut match. Lee Seung-ho’s starting victory also came in May. Prior to Song Young-jin, it was Kim Gwang-hyeon in the Incheon KIA match on April 19, 2007 that a high school graduate rookie pitched ‘more than 5 innings’ as a ‘starter’ in ‘April’, the beginning of the season. At that time, Kim Gwang-hyun began to make his name known in the KBO league by throwing 8 innings and 1 run.
His first starting appearance could have been a big burden, but he threw well as usual with a confident personality. Rather, he surprised everyone by throwing more pitches freely and not losing speed compared to when he played long relief in the bullpen. It was as if he was appealing to the coaching staff by saying, “I am a starter.”
According to ‘Trackman’, which provides tracking data to 9 KBO league clubs, Song Young-jin’s usage rate that day was 51.2% for four-seam fastballs, 23.2% for sliders, 17.1% for curveballs, and 8.5% for splitters. When playing in the bullpen, the ratio of four-seam and slider was high, but when playing as a starter who had to digest long innings, the ratio of curve and splitter was higher. It was a showcase of his abilities. In addition, the command of all types of pitches from the outside of the right-handed hitter worked well. It was an unbelievable pitch for a rookie.
His speed was also impressive. Even though he threw 82 balls, which was much more than before, his speed reduction did not stand out much. Even though the speed dropped a little after 4 or 5 times, the average speed of the four-seam based on Trackman on this day reached 147.7 km per hour. His highest speed was 151.4 km. The desire to increase the slider restraint a little more and the order are also being released. The highest speed of the slider on the day reached 138.4 km. The average speed of the splitters is 134.6 km and the curve is 128.1 km, so if you can add a little more speed difference between these pitches in the future, you can expect better pitches. Regardless of the win or loss, it was a day full of fans.