His fastball, which had reached a maximum speed of nearly 160 kilometres per hour, had deteriorated and his control had faltered. Kim Seo-hyun (19-Hanwha Eagles), a monster rookie who had been hitting the ball a lot, was sent to the Futures (second team) for the second time this season.
Hanwha removed Kim from the first team roster on 8 August and called up left-hander Song Yoon-jun (31) in his place.메이저사이트
“The reason why I thought I had to make a decisive decision was because he came down after pitching yesterday and I saw a lot of eyes around him,” Hanwha manager Choi Won-ho told reporters ahead of the team’s game against the Doosan Bears at Jamsil Stadium in Seoul. “I could sense that he was struggling a lot because it’s not his usual style, so I thought it was necessary to make an adjustment.”
Kim Seo-hyun, who came to Hanwha as the No. 1 overall pick out of Seoul High, was highly touted before the season for his fiery fastball. Early in the season, he topped out at nearly 160 kilometres per hour.
As a reliever, Kim was a solid performer out of the bullpen, earning his first career save on 12 May. In June, however, she began to falter. In four games and 2⅔ innings, she struck out just three batters but walked nine. His ERA jumped from 3.60 to 5.60 as he gave up five runs. His walks allowed per inning (WHIP) was also high at 1.64.
Most notably, in the top of the seventh inning of Game 7, with his team leading 3-1, he gave up two runs on two hits in ⅓ of an inning, with both runners reaching base. His pitches were shaky, with only one of his eight pitches leaving the strike zone, and the team eventually gave up four runs in the seventh inning.
Earlier, Choi Won-ho had said that he would use the shaky Kim Seo-hyun in a pressure-free situation. Even though there were no runners on base, the pressure was on to protect a two-run lead. “I thought it was a bit wrong to use a player of that calibre as a reliever,” Choi said, “I had the idea that if I was going to use him in the bullpen, he should be a must-win, and if not, he should be a starter. In the end, I was wrong.”
Despite accompanying the first team to spring training and playing in exhibition games, Kim started the season with the second team. It was a sign of not being in a hurry. The plan was to perfect her game, and she played 18 games in seven days after being called up to the first team on 19 April.
“It’s just growing pains as a rookie,” Choi said. “I’m going to give him enough time to overcome it. The most important thing is to find confidence. “It’s hard to do anything systematically when you’re playing in the bullpen in the second team,” Choi said. “You need to throw more and more pitches to get a feel for it. That’s why we decided to have a starting class at Futures.”
He wanted them to improve their body, mind and technique. Choi saw Seo-hyun Kim, who had a confident personality, but was nervous. “I told him, ‘I’m sure you’ll be the best pitcher in Korea in the future, just like (Moon) Dong-ju, and the things you’re doing with the Futures are part of the process of becoming a superstar,'” Choi said.
Of course, that doesn’t mean he’ll be a starter. However, Choi believes it would be a blow to Kim Seo-hyun’s ego if she were to be used as a chaser, as she has always been at the top.
“When his body gets better and his pitch count increases, we’ll discuss whether to move him up and use him as a starter or keep him in the bullpen,” Choi said. For now, the plan is to give the pitcher of the future plenty of time to regain his confidence.
Naturally, Kim’s return will be slow. He’ll need at least two or three starts in the secondary rotation. It will be at least a month before he returns.