“I can do 100 pitches” Choi confident to start day after discharge, beats ‘undefeated pitcher’ Plutko…142km, 5.1 innings without allowing a run
A pitcher on the second day of military service who hasn’t even grown his hair out yet.
Samsung Lions left-hander Choi Chae-heung (28) has returned with a body that has been hardened by regular life and systematic training. Samsung’s wait for June was literal. After being called up the day after his discharge on the 12th, Choi gave the Lions hope with a dazzling performance that exceeded expectations.
On the 13th, Choi started the first game of the midweek against LG at Jamsil Baseball Stadium in Seoul and pitched 5⅓ innings, giving up three hits, two walks, and striking out two. His fastball touched 140km (peaked at 142km), which Park Jin-man considers the benchmark for normal health, and he took away timing with a side-to-side slider and changeup. He threw 92 pitches in total and cooked the LG lineup with his aggressive, fastball. Exemplary ace-level pitching that the bench wants from its starter. Also had a comparative advantage in his start against Plutko (6 innings, 3 hits, 1 walk, 6 strikeouts, 1 run).
In the top of the first inning, he gave up a leadoff single to Hong Chang-ki. But he induced the speedy Shin Min-jae to pop out to shortstop. Kim Hyun-soo popped out to end the first inning after 13 pitches.
In the bottom of the second inning, Austin hit a double down the left field line. However, Park Dong-won struck out Oh Ji-hwan and Moon Bo-kyung to end the second inning without a run. In the third inning, an error and a walk put runners on first and second, but Park induced Kim Hyun-soo to ground out to first base with a fastball.
In the fourth inning, Park Dong-won singled to centre field for the first triple.
In the fifth, Moon led off with a double to left-centre, and a walk to Park Hae-min put runners on first and second with one out, but Hong Chang-ki struck out pinch-hitter Kim Min-sung on a slider to get out of the inning unscathed.
Choi Chae-heung earned the win in the top of the sixth inning with a 1-0 lead, walking Austin and giving way to Kim Dae-woo.
Manager Park Jin-man said before the game, “I met him yesterday and he seemed to have built up his body well. He was confident that he could throw more than 100 pitches. He seems to have worked out systematically. His shoulders are wider than before he joined the army, and he has more muscles.” He laughed.
“He came back at the right time when Won Tae-in was out for a while and we didn’t have a fifth starter, so it was a good fit for LG Electronics, which has a lot of confidence in him. We will continue to use him as a five-starter in the future.”
Choi last pitched against LG in Jamsil on 13 September 2020, throwing nine innings of 110 pitches with four hits, one walk, 10 strikeouts, and no runs in his first career complete game to lead LG to an 11-0 victory 안전놀이터.
A pitcher on the second day of military service who hasn’t even grown his hair out yet. Samsung Lions left-hander Choi Chae-heung (28) has returned with a body that has been hardened by regular life and systematic training. Samsung’s wait for June was literal. After being called up the day after his discharge on the…