The LG Twins have solved their homegrown pitching woes with a 66-win pitcher in the KBO. Manager Yoon Kyung-yeop smiled like a child as he said, “The blockage has been cleared.”
LG manager Yeom Kyung-yup met with reporters ahead of the ninth game of the season against Doosan at Jamsil Stadium in Seoul on the 29th and said, “I’ve been having sleepless nights lately. When I first heard the news of the trade yesterday evening, I felt like a blockage in my chest was unlocked,” he smiled brightly.
LG announced the trade earlier in the day, receiving right-handed starter Choi Won-tae from Kiwoom in exchange for infielder Lee Ju-hyung, pitcher Kim Dong-gyu and a first-round pick in the 2024 rookie draft. In order to win a championship, the team took a chance on bleeding two prospects and a first-rounder to get a proven homegrown starter.
Choi Won-tae is a right-handed pitcher who was drafted by Nexen in the first round of the 2015 KBO Draft out of Seoul High School. He has a career record of 66-48 with a 4.27 ERA in 184 games and 963 1/3 innings pitched in the first division, and he was picked up by LG this year after going 6-4 with a 3.25 ERA in 17 games for Kiwoom.
“It wasn’t an easy trade to make. We gave up three prospects. So I’m very grateful. Our club has been collecting a lot of prospects, but he changed the direction for the sake of the team. It’s a trade that really helps me as a manager to run the game. The trade went well when it mattered,” he said with a satisfied smile.
LG’s biggest weakness in the championship was its homegrown starting lineup. Aside from Lim Chan-kyu, the team struggled to organize its starting lineup throughout the first half of the season, with no other homegrown pitcher able to consistently fill the rotation.
“The addition of Choi Won-tae is a big plus for us. He will be the center of the domestic starting lineup, and because he was born in 1997, he can play a role for the next seven to eight years.” “We had a tough time in the first half of the season, waiting for younger players to come up, but they didn’t, so it’s like the blood was opened up with Choi Won-tae,” he said.메이저사이트
With the addition of Choi Won-tae, the pressure to win the championship became even more intense. “The pressure was there from the beginning of the season,” said coach Yeom. The goal is the same, and we have the support of the front office. Our team’s goal is set anyway. In the process of reaching that goal, we made a trade that gave the players a lot of strength. It’s a positive energy for the whole team.”
Choi Won-tae’s debut for LG will be on April 30 against Doosan in Jamsil. Coach Yeom said, “Plutko, who was scheduled to start tomorrow, is suffering from a cold. It could have been a little difficult for him to pitch tomorrow, and Choi Won-tae came in at that time. Even if Plutko was in good shape, I wouldn’t have used Choi Won-tae against Kiwoom next week. He would have pitched against Samsung.”
Meanwhile, Choi Won-tae, who wore the LG pinstripes, said, “I’m sad to say goodbye to the Kiwoom players because I’m close to them. Now, I’m going to focus on LG’s first place finish in the regular season.”