“Why keep the victory ball?” 16-year veteran overcomes free agency crisis, wins after 325 days that everyone celebrated

Kiwoom Heroes pitcher Chung Chan-heon (33) picked up his first win of the season after a three-game stretch.

Chung started the game against the KT Wiz in the 2023 Shinhan Bank SOL KBO League at KT Wiz Park in Suwon, South Korea, on March 23 and pitched six innings of three-hit ball with one walk and three strikeouts.

Jeong, who declared himself a free agent after the end of last season but failed to find a team by the end of the exhibition games and was on the verge of becoming a free agent, narrowly missed out on a chance to continue playing this season by re-signing with Kiwoom for two years and 860 million won. At the time of his signing, it looked like it would take him a while to break into the first team, but after being called up on May 29, he went 1-3 with a 3.27 ERA in four games (22 innings), perfectly filling Kiwoom’s troubled fifth starter spot.

After back-to-back six innings of one-run ball in the first two games, which left him on the losing side, Chung earned his first win of the season in just his fourth appearance. It was his first win in 325 days since a victory over Hanwha on July 2 last year.

His Kiwoom teammates welcomed him with open arms for his first win in nearly a year. They waited for him to do a postgame interview and as soon as the interview ended, they jumped on him and splashed him with water to congratulate him on his victory. He also took the victory ball and gave it to him. He was embarrassed when his teammates asked him, “Why are you doing this? Why did you keep the ball?” but he was happy to receive it.

In a post-match interview, he said, “The feeling is not that new. However, I’m glad that I was able to help the team in the direction of a winning streak when we’re still at the bottom of the table. In the previous match, it wasn’t that I was unlucky, but I think my energy was low. Today, the two-hitter came together well. I have to give a lot of credit to the beasts,” he said after the win 토토사이트.

Now in his 16th year as a professional, Jung has a career record of 49 wins, 56 losses, 28 holds, 46 saves and a 4.76 ERA in 393 games (764 innings) in the KBO. He needs one more win to reach the 50-win plateau.

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