Yang Hyun-jong (35, KIA) has never been to the second team due to ‘sluggish performance’ since he started playing as a starter. He was sidelined in 2011 with a sore shoulder and in 2013 with a torn side muscle, but he never made it to the second team simply because he “didn’t throw well.” He threw as much as he could and was excluded 10 days before the end of the season when the team rankings were determined. Even that was four years ago.스포츠토토

Yang Hyun-jong has always thought, “I must take responsibility.” It was because of his sense of responsibility that he was able to pitch more than 170 innings for eight consecutive years since 2014, when he took over the KIA ace position and brought the mound. Yang Hyeon-jong, who always refused to rest despite the coaching staff’s advice to rest at least once during the season, thought for the first time last month, “It won’t be of much help to me to be in the first team.”

Yang Hyun-jong, who had conceded big goals in two consecutive games in early June and was put down early, seemed to be getting back on his feet, but fell off again in August. Yang Hyeon-jong, who had never pitched more than 6 innings, let alone a quality start (more than 6 innings, 3 earned runs or less) since the KT game on June 24 (6 innings, 1 run, and unaccounted for), pitched 6 hits in 5.2 innings against Kiwoom on August 15. After giving up 7 runs with 4 walks, I ended up going to the 2nd team.

KIA manager Kim Jong-guk and pitching coach Seo Jae-eung gave Yang Hyeon-jong, who was excluded from the entry, 10 days and told him to “let it go.” For the first time, Yang Hyeon-jong thought, “It would be better for the team if I went down,” and accepted a ‘rest.’

Yang Hyeon-jong said, “It was the first time I went to the second team simply because my skills were not good. It was the first time that I thought to myself, ‘It would be better to fall.’ “Before, even if we didn’t win for a month, I helped the team by shutting down every inning, but now I can’t even last an inning, and I feel sorry for coming into the game to look for myself on the mound while my teammates are all trying so hard to win,” he said.

It was said that his pitching balance was lost and that he needed to make very slight form corrections, but in the end, what Yang Hyun-jong had to do after taking 10 days off was to empty his heavy mind and fill himself with confidence again. He rested completely for the first three days to clear his head, then returned to throwing and training for the rest of the week. Yang Hyun-jong, who returned, has regained his former ace appearance. When he returned to the first team, he gave up 2 runs in 6 innings against Hanwha on August 26th and gave up 7 scoreless innings against SSG on the 1st, giving him 2 consecutive wins. It was the starting point of KIA’s 8th consecutive win.

KIA Yang Hyun-jong returned to the first team in the match against Hanwha on August 26 and is pitching with all his might. Provided by KIA Tigers

Yang Hyeon-jong said, “When we were sluggish in the first half, I actually only thought about the positive side. He wondered how a person can keep throwing well, but it’s time to fall once. But after that, as I continued to throw intermittently, I fell deeper and deeper.” It’s not 100% yet, but I think I’ve found my ball. My confidence came back. He said, “I went in aggressively without pressure, and the ball that was hit turned into a foul in the second game after my return, and since there were no balls to drive, the number of pitches decreased and the number of innings increased.”

KIA, which had difficulty using the mound this year due to the lack of foreign pitchers, is hoping that its starters will last as many innings as possible in the remaining games. At the center of it all is Yang Hyun-jong again, and Yang Hyun-jong, who has returned and regained his status as the No. 1 starter, is adding fuel to KIA’s upward trend.

Yang Hyeon-jong only relieved his burden as much as he needed for ten days. Yang Hyeon-jong said, “Didn’t (Kim) Tae-goon say this in an interview? If he doesn’t feel like he has that kind of responsibility or pressure, he should go to the 2nd team. “I’m here in the first team to take on that burden,” he said. “But I won’t think about leading the game anymore. Since the fielders are so good right now, I think all I have to do as a starter is to give up at least runs and then have expectations from the hitters. Instead, I will endure unconditionally,” he said.

Yang Hyun-jong has pitched 119.2 innings in 21 games since the opening, recording 7 wins, 7 losses, and an average ERA of 4.06. Yang Hyeon-jong, who until last year was the only player in league history to pitch 170 innings and win 10 or more games for eight consecutive seasons, realistically gave up on the challenge of 170 innings for nine consecutive seasons. However, I am hopeful with his team that he will win 10 games for the 9th consecutive year.

Yang Hyun-jong said, “I still don’t think I’m 100%. Innings are difficult. However, we came back and immediately won two games, making it our seventh win of the season. It’s thanks to the hitters. “Because the team is improving, I think 10 wins will be possible and I will take on the challenge,” he said.

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