Kwak in good condition ahead of the WBC
, 148km fastball hitter cooks
, various pitches to block the batting line
Arizona=Reporter Jeong Se-young 스포츠토토
2023 World Baseball Classic (WBC) national team’s main right-handed pitcher Bin Kwak (24, Doosan) and Sohn So-jun (22, KT) is showing the best condition with his scoreless pitching.
On the morning of the 20th (Korean time), Kwak Bin and So Joon Sohn faced five batters side by side in a practice game against KIA held at Kino Veteran Memorial Stadium in Tucson, Arizona, USA, and blocked the opponent’s lineup with no hits and no runs.
Kwak Bin, who took the mound as the third pitcher of the WBC national team, took 2 strikeouts while dealing with 5 batters in 1 inning, and the highest speed was 148 km/h. At Kwak Bin’s heavy fastball, the KIA batters repeatedly turned the bat. In addition, the slider at 139 km per hour and the changeup that fell in front of the home plate were also sharp.
Joon Sohn also showed off his excellent pitch. He pitched one inning, faced five batters, and struck out one. The highest fastball speed was 143km/h. However, he threw a cut fastball, changeup, and curve freely and blocked the KIA lineup.
The two pitchers are a strong support for the national team suffering from right-handed pitching poverty. Kwak Bin is a promising player wearing a Doosan uniform in the first nomination in 2018. He struggled with elbow ligament splice surgery, but last year, he went 8-9 (average ERA of 3.78) and played the role of a real ace on the Doosan mound. In particular, in the second half, he appeared in 11 games and showed outstanding pitching with an average ERA of 2.98 with 5 wins and 2 losses. Joon Sohn, who became the Rookie of the Year in 2020, led KT to the championship in 2021, and earned praise from the coaching staff for his heavy fastball and sharp cut fastball in bullpen pitching in Arizona.
After the match, WBC coach Lee Kang-chul praised Kwak Bin for his pitch. Director Lee said, “The pitch and the pitching of the changing ball were as good as I thought.” Kwak Bin said, “It was my first appearance this year, and it was better than I thought, and I was very satisfied.”
Meanwhile, the WBC national team won 12-6 with a batting line that concentrated 19 hits on the day. It is the second consecutive win following the first practice game against NC on the 17th.