‘Bubble’ Kiwoom Baseball, will Lee Jung-hoo become a ‘leverage’ in the team rankings?￼
- on Jun 06, 2023
Professional baseball Kiwoom is on a heavy foot even at the threshold of the summer season. It is difficult to explain with the indicators that have been revealed.
Kiwoom ranked third in the regular season with a win rate of 0.563 (80 wins, 2 draws, and 62 losses) last year, and advanced to the Korean Series in the fall. While the result of the team’s strength has received great attention, in the last offseason, they aimed for this season with a little more active reinforcement of power. Based on last year’s experience, the intention to aim for the top was clear.
As of the 5th, Kiwoom is in 8th place with a win rate of 0.407 (22 wins and 32 losses). The effect of power reinforcement through the FA market has yet to be seen. Won Jong-hyeon of the bullpen has been on the mound after 8 games after undergoing rehabilitation from an injury, and Lee Hyung-jong, who was expected to be the key to the other team, is recording an OPS of 0.664 as of the 5th, similar to the team average (0.663).
However, this does not mean that the team indicators for each division have dropped significantly. Last year, Kiwoom ranked third in team ERA (3.79), and its starting ERA was 3.41, ranking first overall. This year, he is ranked 4th in team ERA (3.58) and 2nd in starting ERA (3.38). Last year, Kiwoom ranked 9th in team batting average (0.252) and 8th in team OPS (0.697), but this year it is ranked 7th in team batting average (0.249) and 9th in team OPS (0.663).
If we are to find a clue, it is the flow of the batting line that was different from last year.
Last year’s Kiwoom lineup had discrepancies in records by batting order, but the center was clear. Centered around Lee Jung-hoo, the league’s best hitter, the line where Kim Hye-seong and Yasiel Puig form a combination made the opponent very uncomfortable. In the process of calculating Kiwoom’s center batting line, which the opposing bench had to go through 4-5 times in each game, the bullpen operation was inevitably complicated.
At the beginning of this year, Kiwoom was uncertain about the presence of Lee Jung-hoo, the center of the center. Conversely, this passage can be a hint. This is because Lee Jung-hoo’s rebound can be a rebound in the team ranking fight. Even after 30 games of the season, Lee Jeong-hoo’s batting index was at the bottom, but as of the 5th, he is recovering quickly with a batting average of 0.280 and an OPS of 0.774. In the last 18 games since May 15th, he has returned to his original position with a batting average of 0.382 and an OPS of 0.987.
Teams meeting Kiwoom are reaching a point where they can be conscious of Lee Jung-hoo’s batting order again. However, it is regrettable that Edison Russell and Kim Hye-sung, who are substitute resources for Puig, have faltered when Lee Jeong-hoo came back to life. Russell recorded an OPS of 0.770 for the season and was sluggish with an OPS of 0.601 in the last 18 games. Kim Hye-seong is still ranked first in team batting average (0.309) and team OPS (0.788), but has struggled with batting average of 0.210 and OPS of 0.615 in the last 18 games.메이저사이트
It seems to be one of the reasons why Kiwoom could not run with 6 wins and 12 losses in the last 18 games where Lee Jung-hoo’s upward trend was clear. Lee Jung-hoo had little ups and downs during his 6 years as a pro until last year. As long as he is on the right track this season, there is a high possibility that he will not lag behind. Hyesung Kim and Russell’s batting cycle can be a ‘variable’ that will decide the ranking fight in June.