There was reportedly more debate about who would take the job than was publicized. After winning the regular season, LG manager Yoon Kyung-yup finished planning for the Korean Series relatively early. The best lineup was 99% finalized and released to the media, but there was one spot where he wasn’t 100% sure.
The bench had a lot to think about when it came to the starting spot left vacant by the injury to foreign pitcher Adam Plutko. While using left-hander Kim Yun-sik and right-hander Lee Jung-yong, who made a successful transformation into a starter this season, was a “constant,” the team reportedly looked at a “third card” at one point. Finding a way to utilize Lee’s bullpen was a major concern, but it wasn’t the only one.
Kim Yun-sik did not meet Yoon’s benchmarks in his preparation. His fastball velocity was inconsistent and he wasn’t convinced of the synergy with his other pitches.
Nevertheless, Yeom announced the four Korean Series starters two to three days earlier than planned during a weekly training session just before the Korean Series to minimize confusion among the team members. Kim Yun-sik was selected as one of the four players before the final evaluation game on the 4th against Cheongbaek.
before the final evaluation game,
LG’s decision to select a fourth starter turned out to be the best one. In the Korean Series, Kim Yun-sik was the first of LG’s four starters to pitch in Game 4. After taking a 2-1 series lead, he pitched 5.2 innings with three strikeouts, three hits, and one run to give LG its third win of the series.
In fact, Kim Yun-sik has been the KT killer. As he steadily gained starting opportunities last year, his delivery stabilized under the dedicated guidance of bullpen coach Kim Kwang-sam, and the pitch tunnel for his main weapon, a changeup, was solidly formed. In particular, in nine games since August last year, he has been a domestic ace with a 5-1 record and a 1.98 ERA. Among them, he made two appearances against KT, striking out 11 batters in 12 innings, giving up seven hits and no runs for an ERA of ‘0’ and WHIP (walks allowed per inning) of 0.83.
Perhaps Kim Yun-sik in front of KT in the second half of last year was similar to KT starter Wes Benjamin against LG this year. It was because of his strong second half last year that KT manager Lee Kang-cheol didn’t hesitate to include Kim in his pitching staff for the World Baseball Classic (WBC).
Since then, Kim has had a “time of disconnection. He traveled to the WBC while still recovering from a back injury, and even when he returned to the LG uniform for the regular season, he was unable to recapture the “shine” of last year with a 6-4 record and a 4.22 ERA. 보스토토 도메인
When speaking to reporters on the field, Kim said, “I can’t feel the changeup again,” and “I’m trying, trying, trying” to get over the hump.
It seems that Kim found his way out of the maze at the most crucial moment. In Game 4 of the Korean Series against KT, Kim threw 38 fastballs that topped out at 144 mph, 28 changeups that varied in velocity by more than 20 mph, and 87 pitches that included curves and sliders.