The starting pitchers for the 10 clubs that will participate in the opening game of the 2023 KBO League have been announced. Kim Gwang-hyeon and Ahn Woo-jin were dropped for the opening match and saved the pride of the native ace.
KBO held the ‘2023 KBO Media Day’ at the Grand Hyatt Seoul Grand Ballroom in Hannam-dong, Yongsan-gu, Seoul on the 30th.
Including the coaches of the 10 clubs, SSG Hanyusum, Choi Jihoon, Kiwoom Lee Junghoo, Kim Hyeseong, LG Oh Jihwan, Park Haemin, KT Park Kyungsoo, Kang Baekho, KIA Kim Sunbin, Kim Doyoung, NC Son Ahseop, Koo Changmo, Samsung Oh Jaeil, Won Taein, Lotte Ahn Chihong, Park Sewoong, Doosan The captains of 10 KBO league teams, including Heo Kyung-min, Yang Eui-ji, Hanwha Jung Woo-ram, and Chae Eun-seong, and players representing each team were seated.
At Media Day, the team commanders revealed the starting pitchers for the opening game scheduled to be held in five stadiums across the country on the 1st.
◆ Suwon LG-KT: Casey Kelly VS Wes Benjamin
In KT, Benjamin, who is in his 2nd year season, comes out. Coach Kang-Cheol Lee has been the starting pitcher for the opening game since the spring camp in the United States. The condition is so good. In the demonstration game, he appeared in 3 games and played an active role with an average ERA of 1.64 with 8 hits, 2 walks and 10 strikeouts in 11 innings. Director Lee Kang-cheol explained, “I chose to beat LG.”
In LG, ace Casey Kelly was dropped as the starting pitcher for the opening game. Last year, I gave up my position to Plutko due to poor health, but this year is good. He appeared in two exhibition games and checked his condition with an earned run average of 2.00 in 9 innings. Director Yeom Kyung-yeop also said, “The reason I chose Kelly was to beat KT.” 안전놀이터
◆ Jamsil Lotte vs. Doosan: Dan Strayley VS Raul Alcantara
In Jamsil, a confrontation between foreign aces takes place. For Doosan, Alcantara, which returned after two years, will start. He pitched in three exhibition games and posted a 2.19 earned run average in 12⅓ innings. Head coach Lee Seung-yeop emphasized, “I have experience playing in Korea, and I am in good condition now. No matter which team I play, I will not be able to easily attack.”
Lotte sorties Strayley. Strayley, who rejoined last year and continues to accompany them until this year. He recorded an average ERA of 6.43 in 7 innings in 2 exhibition games. In the first match against Samsung, it was not good with 4 runs in 2 innings, but in the match against Hanwha on the 26th, he regained a sense of stability by pitching 5 innings and 1 run. Coach Larry Sutton explained, “We start on the road in the first week. We chose Strayley, the best match-up.”
◆ Incheon KIA-SSG: Shawn Anderson VS Kwang-Hyun Kim
SSG, the winning team in the 2022 season, puts Kim Gwang-hyun at the fore. Although he has been to the WBC, he steadily raised the number of pitches and showed good condition. 2 games, 7 innings, 6 hits, 4 walks, 5 strikeouts, 3 runs, ERA finished with a 3.86 ERA. Kim Gwang-hyun took on the role of starting the opening game for the first time in four years since 2019, before advancing to the US Major League. Director Kim Won-hyung said, “Kim Gwang-hyun is Korea’s No. 1, SSG No. 1 ace,” and explained the background of the selection.
KIA introduces a new foreign pitcher, Anderson. Anderson, who received the title of ace early on, had a good fight with 5 hits, 10 strikeouts and 1 run in 6 innings in the last inspection on the 26th. He was good with a 1.20 earned run average in 3 games and 15 innings. Manager Kim Jong-guk explained, “He is in the best condition. His ninth pitch and pitch are the best among the five starting pitchers.”