Sidearm pitcher Lim Ki-young, 30, has been the lifeblood of the KIA bullpen this season. Just look at his innings pitched this year. As of July 7, Lim has appeared in 41 games and pitched 59 innings.
His roles have been varied: He started the season in long-relief duties, then took over when closer Jung Hae-young struggled. Right now, he’s primarily a closer, but his role could change in the remaining games depending on the team’s needs. He’s been performing well in both roles.
Ki-young Lim has logged the most innings of any bullpen pitcher in the league this season, and he’s done so with a 1-1 record and a 2.44 ERA in 11 appearances. His WHIP (walks allowed per inning) is a low 0.88, and his batting average is just 0.187 on the season. His WAR (wins above replacement) is 1.84, the highest of any KIA pitcher, including starters.
One concern is his stamina. He’s already thrown a lot of innings, and as a bullpen pitcher, he’s likely to feel the strain towards the end of the season. He even pitched three days in a row against the Gwangju Lotte last month on April 28-30. Lim, however, is not concerned about his physical condition. Instead, he said, “I want to complete 100 innings as a middle reliever.”
“I’m not the only one who’s struggling,” he said on June 6 at Gwangju-Kia Champions Field. I try to fulfill most of the schedules given by the trainer, such as weights and running, to maintain my physical fitness.” “I set a goal to pitch 100 innings as a middle reliever from the beginning of the season and contribute to the team,” he said.
Lim’s journey to the bullpen this season has taken some twists and turns. Originally hoping to be a starter, Lim lost the fifth spot to high school rookie Yoon Young-cheol in the offseason competition. He’d be lying if he said he didn’t feel disappointed, but he quickly dismissed any negative feelings.토토사이트
“I didn’t think much of it because I thought the team would be better if (Yoon) started and I went to the middle and pitched long (relief),” he said.
“Team performance always comes before individual performance,” Lim said, adding, “I think it’s right to throw in the direction the team wants, and I think it’s my place to do a good job.”