Moon Yong-Ik’s breeze blows through KT Camp.
Something is wrong. It’s an atmosphere where an ultra-premium ‘hit product’ will be made.
The KT Wiz spring training camp is held at the Hyundai Motor Dream Ball Park in Gijang, Busan. The hottest man in the camp is neither Ko Young-pyo, who just signed a 10.7 billion won contract, nor Rojas, the legendary MVP who returned after three years. There is another player who is getting the most attention. It’s the newest member of the KT family, bullpen pitcher Moon Yong-ik.
Moon was acquired from the Samsung Lions as compensation for Kim Jae-yoon, who left for free agency. His fastball can reach 150 kilometers. He has a weakness of pitching anxiety, but if he works on it, he can be used as a closer, according to “pitching expert” Lee Kang-cheol.
“When I was looking at the list of protected players sent by Samsung, I saw Moon Yong-ik’s name. I consulted with manager Nado Hyun and made a decision right away,” he said, explaining that the signing of Moon Yong-ik was more than expected.
“All of our bullpen pitchers, including Park Young-hyun and Son Dong-hyun, have a fastball style. We don’t have a fastball or changeup guy, but Moon Yong-ik throws 150 kilometers and has a good slider. Players who mainly throw fastballs definitely lose power when they pitch in a row, so we need someone like Moon Yong-ik who can get strikeouts.”
KT is promoting Park Young-hyun to the closer role with the departure of Kim Jae-yoon. Assuming Son Dong-hyun remains in the eighth inning role, the team will need a new closer to handle the sixth and seventh innings, and Lee is looking at Moon Yong-ik as a potential candidate. If Moon Yong-ik performs well in the closer’s role, it could be a “jackpot” for KT, as they will have acquired a player with similar stats without investing in Kim Jae-yoon, who cost 5.8 billion won.
Lee has already given catcher Jang Sung-woo a mission. “The manager 바카라사이트 순위 and the seniors had a dinner, and the manager said something special to me. He said, ‘I’m going to develop Moon Yong-ik, and I want you to make sure,'” he said behind the scenes.
“I knew he was a good ball player, but I didn’t know his age. I thought he was in his early 20s, so when I first saw him, I joked, ‘No, if you’re in a new team, you should come to my room and say hello,’ but it turned out he was 30. I was glad that he was younger than me, but I felt bad,” he laughs.
“Our manager doesn’t like pitchers who are out of control. The players are aware of this. I’ll talk to Yong-ik about this a lot. Even if his velocity drops a bit, we’ll work together to find a way to catch his pitches.”