Hong Kun-hee (31, Doosan Bears)’s fastball is expected to remain strong this year as well.
This year, Hong Kun-hee became the ‘4th year Doosan Man’. Called an unfinished prospect during the KIA Tigers days, he transformed into the team’s fastball pitcher after being traded to Doosan in 2020. Before the trade in 2020, Hong Kun-hee’s average fastball velocity was 143.4 km per hour. After transferring to Doosan, the average speed increased by more than 3 km per hour to 147.1 km per hour. From 2021 (147.8 km per hour) to 2022 (147.5 km per hour), it has maintained a high speed for the third consecutive year. His highest speed was recorded at 156 km/h.
Hong Kun-hee said in an interview after the Doosan founding ceremony on the 16th, “I don’t know why the restraints increased. At KIA, I didn’t have confidence in my pitching. That’s why I couldn’t bring out my best restraint and performance by focusing only on my pitching,” he said. Hit (your ball into the strike zone) and hit it.” It seems that doing it as it is came out with good results.”
As the position changed, so did the role. He, who did not stand out in either the starter or the bullpen, took on the role of Pilseungjo for all three years after moving to Doosan. In particular, in 2021, he recorded a career high with a 2.78 earned run average with 6 wins, 6 losses, 3 saves and 17 holds. In the postseason, he became a ‘bullpen ace’ who pitched at the most important moment regardless of inning.
Last year, he took on a more important position. When Kim Kang-ryul, the previous closer, left due to injury, he became the new closer. Hong Kun-hee’s average ERA rose slightly to 3.48, and he also recorded nine losses. Still, he recorded 18 saves and 9 holds, performing like a closer. Former manager Kim Tae-hyung said, “The only pitchers who can make a 6-point difference are Hong Kun-hee, Jeong Cheol-won, and Kim Myung-shin,” expressing his regret for the thin bullpen and his belief in the three pitchers.
The weight off the mound has also changed. Hong Kun-hee, who has been in charge of the pitching team since 2021, is likely to lead his colleagues this year as well. He said, “The pitcher team is decided at spring camp. But looking at the atmosphere, I think I’ll do it,” he said. The players did not change much from last year to this year. (If he takes over as team leader this year) I think I will be able to play the season in a good mood,” he expected.
Hong Geon-hee has been with former coach Kim Tae-hyeong, who actively uses the bullpen for the past three seasons. In particular, he played multi-innings in 5 out of 7 postseason games in 2021. He was also responsible for three innings alone in the first game of the playoffs against the Samsung Lions. Naturally, the ‘overuse controversy’ followed him.
In fact, the party was calm. Hong Gun-hee said, “People around me worried a lot. However, he has never been overloaded with his body, probably because he has strength in physical strength. There were no injuries,” he said. “As the years go by, my body gets better. 슬롯사이트 You shouldn’t be careless, but he is still confident in his stamina,” he laughed.
Hong Kun-hee is a strong finisher this year as well. However, the goal is unique. He said he wanted to go scoreless in a tie situation, not the number of saves. It means that Doosan, which finished 9th in the regular season last year, will not only accumulate individual saves, but will fill the necessary positions for the team.
Hong Kun-hee said, “I haven’t set a numerical target. I was obsessed with the goal, but the results came out badly. (Rather than that) It shouldn’t hurt. You have to build a body that can play a season in a healthy way,” he said. “Last year, there were many defeats. In most cases, scores were given in tie-breaking situations. I think there will be many similar situations this year. I am thinking about how to block it well and lead it to a team victory.”