Lotte Giants manager Larry Sutton made the decision to remove left-hander Kim Jin-wook and right-hander Kim Sang-soo from the roster ahead of the team’s eighth game of the season against the KT Wiz on Sunday.
Kim and Kim have been the mainstays of the Lotte bullpen this season. Kim went 2-1 with a 2.82 ERA in 27 games with five saves, and Kim Sang-soo went 3-1 with a 3.32 ERA in 29 games with one save and eight saves, making him one of the best middle relievers in the league. The two pitchers have been instrumental in Lotte’s current third-place finish.
However, both Kim Jin-wook and Kim Sang-soo have been struggling lately. In his last five appearances, Kim Sang-soo has given up five runs on nine hits in 3⅓ innings, while Kim Jin-wook has given up three runs on five hits in two innings. Compared to their peak form, they are not dominating hitters.
Sutton first said, “Kim Jin-wook and Kim Sang-soo are down physically. We decided to take advantage of the 10-day window and give them time to recover and reset,” Sutton said, explaining the move.
That doesn’t mean they’re taking it easy. Kim went straight into a Futures League game against Samsung’s second team on July 7, pitching one inning of one-hit ball with two strikeouts. Kim isn’t scheduled to pitch in the Futures game, but he’s open to taking the mound for the second team at any time depending on his health.
While it’s tempting to give physically exhausted pitchers two or three days of rest and then pitch in a first-team game to get them back in shape, Lotte made the bold decision to keep Kim and Kim Jin-wook out of the first team for at least 10 days. 메이저사이트
“Kim Sang-soo and Kim Jin-wook will focus on their recovery, but Kim Jin-wook is expected to continue playing in the Futures Game,” Sutton said, emphasizing that “it’s not like they’ve been on vacation for 10 days.”
“As a manager, you always want to put your best pitcher out there to win the game, but baseball is a human game, and if you keep pushing, there’s a point or a moment where you’re going to break or get hurt, and you need to manage that. He gives them a break when they need it, and when they need training, he pushes them through exercises and transforms them into performers. We talked about this a lot.”