“I thought about changing the pitcher… ”.
The Daejeon KIA match on the 14th before 메이저놀이터 the debut match of pitcher Kim Seo-hyun (19, Hanwha), who is attracting attention as the first overall rookie in the 2023 KBO. When Kim Seo-hyun headed to the mound from the outfield bullpen in the 8th inning, the stadium was agitated. When he hit a 150km fastball from the practice pitch, the crowd exclaimed.
However, Kim Seo-Hyun gave the first batter Lee Woo-Sung a straight walk and started. The moment the ball was thrown on the 4th pitch, a cat appeared out of nowhere and roamed in front of the 3rd base dugout. After the walk came out, the referee declared time for a while, and the cat quietly disappeared onto the third base dugout on its own.
The ground was in a chaotic situation, but Kim Seo-hyun did not even know that a cat had appeared. Kim Seo-hyun, who looked back on the situation the day before the match against KT in Daejeon on the 15th, said, “I didn’t see the cat. He suddenly thought about changing the pitcher because the referee was taking time,” he said.
Then, Kim Seo-hyun, who was hit by Woo-hyeok Byun on the first pitch and was in danger of putting 1st and 2nd base safely, overcame the self-inflicted crisis by handling Hwang Dae-in with a 1st base foul fly, Kim Ho-ryeong with a looking strikeout, and Ju Hyo-sang with a pitcher grounder. He was hit in the right calf by Joo Hyo-sang’s batting ball, but he caught the ball and calmly threw it to first base. His performance before his debut was 1 inning, 1 hit, 1 walk, 1 strikeout, no run.
The leg hit by the ball was bruised. Kim Seo-hyun said, “It’s okay. There is no pain, but I did (icing) to get rid of the swelling due to bruising.” “It didn’t seem too bad for the first game. It was my first time playing a first-team game after coming to Korea, and there was something I couldn’t adapt to on the mound. (Back net) All the fans were sitting behind me, so I could feel the heat.”
As a fireballer, he drew attention with his tremendous ball speed. Up to 157 km was marked on the electronic board in the stadium, but the highest speed based on Trackman was measured at 158 km. The average speed of fastball was also 154 km, which was full of power. 16 out of 18 pitches were fastballs, almost one pitch.
Kim Seo-hyun said, “I didn’t care about ball speed and just focused on the game. I have no desire for restraint, but it is my first appearance, and I want to help the team, so it seems to have come out better than my original restraint,” he said. “It is important to keep the restraint for a year. I don’t know why these days, but I don’t use breaking balls very often. I have to use a breaking ball, but I lost the timing to throw it, so I am relying on a fastball.”
The Korean baseball team is experiencing a growing sense of crisis as the Korean baseball team is once again knocked out early in the first round at the World Baseball Classic (WBC), but a promising player like Kim Seo-hyun has emerged as a ray of hope. Kim Seo-hyun said, “If I get a chance later, I really want to go to the WBC. It would be a real honor to go to the WBC,” he said, expressing his willingness to participate in the 6th WBC scheduled for 2026. There are three years left, including this year.
In order to become a national representative, you must have the right personality and dignity as well as outstanding skills. Kim Seo-hyun, who was placed on probation due to the personal SNS controversy during the camp last month, said, “I keep thinking about that. I can’t seem to forget it. It shouldn’t come out again. I learned a lot from my seniors about how to live because of that. Even after the exercise schedule during camp is over, I learned to do the weights and training that I personally need,” he said. Personally, I am not greedy,” he said, emphasizing the team-first spirit.