Kim Gwang-hyun and An Woo-jin sortie side by side… 2023 season opening match starter confirmed

Only two domestic selections, foreign pitchers are still strong, and the

starting pitchers for the regular season opening game of 10 clubs to announce the start of the 2023 season have all been confirmed.

10 team commanders and representative players participated in the 2023 Shinhan Bank SOL KBO Media Day event held at the Grand Hyatt Hotel in Yongsan-gu, Seoul on the afternoon of the 30th and expressed their determination to face the new season.

In addition to their determination, the coaches also revealed the starting pitchers for the opening match to be held on April 1st. Most clubs did not deviate much from expectations. The ‘first starting’ pitchers representing each team head to the mound to put on the first button.

Kim Gwang-hyun and Ahn Woo-jin, the best starters in Korea, start side by side

Among the 10 clubs, only two teams, SSG Landers and Kiwoom Heroes,메이저사이트 have domestic pitchers on the starting mound for the opening game. The ‘defending champion’ SSG, which brings the KIA Tigers home, announced left-handed pitcher Kim Gwang-hyun as the starter. Director Kim Won-hyung expressed his anticipation, saying, “Korea’s ace that doesn’t need a modifier.”

It is the first time in four years since 2019 that Kim Gwang-hyun has been a starting pitcher for the opening game. In the case of last season, foreign pitcher Wilmer Font started the regular season opener against the NC Dinos, and Kim Gwang-hyun took on the role of starting pitcher in the home opener. Coincidentally, the opponent team at the time of the home opener was also KIA.

In 2014, 2016, and 2019, he did not become a winning pitcher in a total of three Opening Day starts. He was either defeated or retreated by casting noddy. It remains to be seen whether Kim Gwang-hyun, who has been trusted by the coaching staff, can live up to the team’s expectations.

Kiwoom, who plays a home game against the Hanwha Eagles, puts An Woo-jin as the starting pitcher. Coach Hong Won-ki said, “Ahn Woo-jin is the best pitcher in Korea. I chose him (as the starting pitcher for the opening game) because he is a pitcher who enjoys playing big games.”

Last year, Ahn Woo-jin took the mound as a starting pitcher in the opening game against the Lotte Giants, recording 5 hits, 2 walks, 7 strikeouts and 2 runs in 6 innings. However, even after achieving a quality start (recording 3 earned runs or less while throwing 6 or more innings), he did not receive any scoring support and became a losing pitcher.

Foreign pitchers still stand out

Except for the two teams, the rest of the clubs left the heavy responsibility of starting the opening game to foreign pitchers. It is a part where you can feel that the strength of foreign pitchers is still prominent. KIA and NC Dinos, which replaced all foreign pitchers ahead of this season, announced Sean Anderson and Eric Peddy as starters, respectively.

“High-speed pitcher” Birch Smith (Hanwha) will also appear in the opening game. As Hanwha, who has to face Ahn Woo-jin, is looking forward to Smith’s pitching, which can show off his powerful pitch. Coach Carlos Subero explained the background, saying, “I have insisted on a domestic pitcher (as a starter for the opening game), but I decided on Smith, who showed the best performance in spring camp this year.”

Attention is also drawn to the match between Casey Kelly (LG Twins) and Wes Benjamin (kt Wiz), who served as the ace of the team last year. KT’s expectations for Benjamin’s pitching are so high that coach Lee Kang-cheol said, “I chose Benjamin to beat LG.”

David Buchanan (Samsung Lions), who has been in his 4th year in the KBO League, will start a match against Peddie. In 2021, for the third consecutive year following last year, he will be on the mound as a starting pitcher in the opening game. As the team has already warmed up through the demonstration game, it is expected that the team will achieve a one-two punch this season along with Albert Suarez.

In Jamsil, Dan Strayley (Lotte Giants) and Raul Alcantara (Doosan Bears), two foreign pitchers familiar with the KBO league, had a starting matchup. Alcantara, who returned to Korea after two years of living in Japan, meets fans as a starting pitcher for the opening match three years after the 2020 season.

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