“I really want to settle down this year.”

The Samsung Lions’ concern this year is, of course, the ‘bullpen’. With finisher Oh Seung-hwan (41) and setup man Woo Kyu-min (38) in charge of the back door, the ‘waist’ line from the starter to the setup man was lacking, so I had a headache. However, there is one player who stands out from the beginning of this season as a winning team. It is Lee Seung-hyun (32), a right-handed pitcher with 13 years of professional experience. 

Lee Seung-hyun took the mound as the team’s second pitcher in the top of the 4th inning against the Daegu NC Dinos on the 2nd, and played his first game of the season. At the time, Samsung was leading to 1-6 as starter Andrew Suarez was knocked out early with 6 runs in 3 innings. Following the 0-8 loss in the opening game the previous day, Lee Seung-hyun took the mound in the midst of a dark defeat.

As Lee Seung-hyun climbed the mound, the Samsung mound became comfortable. Seung-Hyun Lee, who had a tripartite withdrawal in the 4th inning, struck out Jason Martin and Ah-seop Son, who had hit a home run and a triple in the previous inning, in the beginning of the 5th with a strikeout and a fly ball. Afterwards, he blocked 2 scoreless innings while handling center hitter Park Seok-min with a ground ball. 

While Lee Seung-hyun stabilized the mound, the batting line gained strength. Samsung, which trailed 3-6 at the end of the 4th inning, succeeded in tying the score with Kang Min-ho’s 3-point run at the end of the 6th inning, then scored 2 more points and won a thrilling 8-6 come-from-behind victory. It was thanks to Seung-Hyun Lee holding the center of the mound and laying the foundation for a comeback.

Lee Seung-hyun was one of the players whose potential never burst. After going 2-1 with 8 holds and a 1.95 ERA in 34 games in 2019, he posted 14 holds in 2020 and 13 holds in 2022. However, the content of pitching was not satisfactory. He was in an ambiguous position to be classified as a winning group. 

Lee Seung-hyun, whom I met during the demonstration game, explained the reason for the sluggish performance, saying, “I became impatient because there are many players with fast speed these days.” It is a confession that he had a desire for redemption. He said, “In fact, my (redemption) data would have improved if it had improved, but nothing has deteriorated significantly. However, the most important command (control) has gone bad. Even though his pitching improved, he could not control his pitch, so the ball was driven to the center and was hit. After that, a vicious cycle of mental shaking followed.” 

Lee Seung-hyun changed his preparation method due to the continued sluggish performance. He did weight training to enhance flexibility. He felt uneasy about the awkward attempt, but after watching the World Baseball Classic (WBC) last month, he became more confident and sweated even more. I was convinced of the new training method after seeing the pitchers of strong teams throwing fastballs without missing a shot based on stable balance and flexibility.  메이저놀이터

Efforts did not betray. Lee Seung-hyun, who made perfect pitches with 1 hold, 2 saves and 4 scoreless innings in 4 demonstration games, continued stable pitching in the regular season, leading the team to their first win of the season. He is now classified as a sure winner of Samsung.

Lee Seung-hyun said, “It’s been a long time since I’ve been away, but I don’t have a place for myself yet. I am greedy for the position of Pilseungjo in the 1st group,” he said. “So far, it is going well. This year, I hope this pace continues until the second half,” he said, reaffirming his determination.

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