Tiger Rookie of the Year candidate’s growing pains… It hurts.

Hardship should be the foundation for growth.

Yoon Young-cheol (19), the super rookie boasted by the Korean Baseball Organization (KBO), fell apart. He gave up seven runs in three innings in the 2023 Shinhan Bank SOL KBO League home game against NC at Gwangju-KIA Champions Field on May 17, leaving him with four losses (three wins) on the season.

It was a tough game. They were out-hit by a hot-hitting NC team. He struck out 11 batters. After holding the unfamiliar Yoon Young-chul to a five-inning no-hitter in the first meeting (April 27), NC demolished the rookie in the second meeting.메이저사이트

He’s the type of pitcher who fights with his offspeed pitches, changeup movement, and unique deception movements rather than a powerful fastball, so the moment his pitches falter, he’s in big trouble, and it showed. His strike-to-ball ratio was 46 to 31, which is far from ideal. With a wobbly fastball and a string of pitches to work the count, there was no way he could get out of trouble.

It was his worst performance in 11 starts this season. The fewest innings, the most runs, the most hits. After his first two starts, he had gone at least five innings in eight straight games. His modest 3.08 ERA quickly ballooned to 4.04. It was the first sign of trouble for a guy who had been labeled the Rookie of the Year race leader.

He’s a high school prospect playing his first professional season. Unlike his school days, he has to play every day, and the quality of the hitters he faces is much higher. This can be interpreted as a point where the physical strain that comes with the job rears its head.

KIA manager Kim Jong-kook said, “I don’t expect much from Young-chul. As long as he gives up three runs in five innings, I think he’s done his job,” he said. He meant to ease the burden on the rookie. He also said, “We will check his condition later and adjust his pitching schedule if he looks heavy.” True to his word, he eventually removed Yoon from the roster on the 18th.

Despite the rest, there is no rush in the Rookie of the Year race. With more than half of the season left, there’s plenty of time to make a statement. None of the other contenders – Kim Seo-hyun, Moon Dong-joo, and Park Myung-geun – have a clear lead yet. Now that the inevitable growing pains have arrived, KIA and Yoon Young-chul have made the best decision in the long run.


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