Emergency lefty long reliever throws 78 pitches to save NC’s 5-run lead from collapse

Choi Sung-young pitches a complete game to lead the NC Dinos to victory.

Choi Sung-young takes the mound after the bottom of the first inning of the NC Dinos’ game against the LG Twins in the 2023 KBO Baseball League at Jamsil Baseball Stadium in Seoul, South Korea, on February 2.

NC, which went 2-3 against the Doosan Bears in Changwon on March 31, was in danger of seeing its steady 5 percent winning percentage collapse if it lost this game as well. Moreover, homegrown left-handed ace Koo Chang-mo, who returned to the starting lineup after being removed from the first team roster due to fatigue since the 18th of last month, complained of left forearm discomfort after facing leadoff hitter Hong Chang-ki in the bottom of the first inning and returned to the dugout.

Luckily for NC, in the midst of such a bad situation, they had Choi. Choi, who made his professional debut in 2016, is an experienced left-hander with a career record of 8-7, 1 save, 2 holds, and a 5.32 ERA in 82 games (223.1 innings pitched) until last year. Prior to this year’s game, Choi was 2-0 with a 0.84 ERA in three appearances (one start).

Choi didn’t falter in his sudden appearance. He retired Moon Sung-joo (grounder to third base) and Kim Hyun-soo (strikeout) to end the first inning. In the bottom of the second, he got Austin Dean (strikeout), Moon Bo-kyung (grounder to second base), and Oh Ji-hwan (fly to left field) to record his first three-hit shutout of the day.

The stability continued in the bottom of the third. Kim Min-sung led off with a fly to left field and gave up a walk to Kim Ki-yeon, but Park Hae-min and Hong Chang-ki were retired on a straight hit to shortstop and a fly to second base, respectively.

The first run came in the bottom of the fourth inning. After getting Moon Sung-ju and Kim Hyun-soo to fly out to left field and strike out, Choi gave up a solo arch over the left field fence to Austin. He got Moon Bo-kyung to fly out to left field to end the inning.

In the bottom of the fifth, he was clean again. Choi struck out Oh Ji-hwan and Kim Min-seong grounded out to shortstop. The next batter, Kim Ki-yeon, gave up a grounder that hit him in the body and flowed toward the shortstop, but he was able to make a good defensive play at shortstop Kim Joo-won to get the out. In the bottom of the sixth, Park Hae-min (grounder to shortstop) and Hong Chang-ki (grounder to second base) singled and Moon Sung-joo hit a double to the right side of the infield, but Kim got Kim Hyun-soo to fly out to left field.

Choi Sung-young, who was also on the mound in the bottom of the seventh, gave up a double and a single to Austin and Moon Bo-kyung, respectively, to put runners on first and third with no outs. He then gave up a single to Oh Ji-hwan, allowing Austin to score from third, but after seeing Oh advance to second with the help of the defense, he turned the ball over to reliever Ryu Jin-wook. Ryu Jin-wook would not allow any more runs and Choi Sung-young’s ERA would not increase.

토토사이트 His final line was six innings, five hits, one walk, one home run, four strikeouts, and two runs on 78 pitches. Most notably, he used a variety of changeups to get LG batters to miss, and his fastball had a lot of power in favorable ball counts.

Led by Choi’s stellar performance and a batting lineup that pounded out 12 hits and nine runs, NC defeated LG 9-2 to improve to 24-23 and save its five-game winning streak from collapse. After earning a start against the Busan Lotte Giants (3-1 NC win) on March 24, his last appearance before this game, Lee said, “I’m thinking that even if I’m not the starter, if I go up (to the mound), I’ll do my best. I want to be a player who can help the team as well as I am now,” Choi said, and he was able to keep his word and smile as he picked up his third win of the season.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *