“I’ll take 100 pitches, even if you throw 135″… Salt-of-the-earth trust makes a difference
Behind “free agent” Im Chan-kyu’s (31-LG) 14-win career high was the unwavering trust of manager Yoon Kyung-yup, who gave the pitcher, who had been nothing more than a mediocre homegrown starter, more innings and pitches, and he pitched like never before.
On May 15, Lim started the season finale against Doosan in the 2023 Shinhan Bank SOL KBO League at Jamsil Stadium in Seoul and pitched 5⅔ innings of one-hit ball with one walk and three strikeouts to record his 14th win of the season. In the 144th game of the season, he helped the team to a 5-2 victory in front of a packed Jamsil Stadium, making the regular season championship trophy presentation ceremony even more special.
After the game, Lim Chan-kyu said, “I’ve been beaten by Doosan many times. I always gave up runs and became a losing pitcher,” he said. “I wanted to win every time I went out there, so I did my best, but I was disappointed that I didn’t do enough, but I’m happy that we won the final game today.”
When asked what it was like to hold the trophy for the first time, he laughed and said, “It was very heavy,” and added, “This is the first trophy in 29 years. In 2002, LG lost the Korean Series, so I didn’t see the trophy. I heard about it today because I’m a pitching coach under the consideration of the club, so I’m grateful to the club and my teammates.”
Lim’s final stat line for the 2023 season was 14-3 with a 3.42 ERA in 30 games and 144⅔ innings pitched. He set career highs in wins and ERA and was the winning ace in LG’s first regular season title in 29 years. He also pitched a complete game in the final game to overtake Ko Young-pyo (KT) and Kwak Bin (Doosan) as the all-time Korean wins leader.
A 2011 LG first-round pick, Lim has been a love/hate pitcher with only 11 wins in 2018 and 10 in 2020. He opted not to exercise his free agency rights after last year’s struggles.
“May was a big turning point for me. The manager told me that he would trust me to throw 100 pitches even if my fastball was 135 kilometers. He set the number of pitches to be thrown to be 90-100 and the innings to be five or more.” “It was the first time I’ve ever heard that in baseball. He gave me a number of pitches and innings to pitch, and from then on, it was a new baseball. I felt confident that no matter how I pitched, the manager would trust me,” he said, giving credit for the 14 wins to Yeom Kyung-yup.
Starting the season in the middle of the pack (four games) also contributed to the 14 wins. “It was really helpful,” said Lim. I was trying to relax, and the long-relief role was a chance to relax. When I went to the long man, the manager introduced me to new baseball, and I was able to embrace it.”
“I’ve never thought of myself as an ace,” he said. “I’ve never thought of myself as an ace. I’ve never thought of myself as an ace. It’s been a few years since I’ve been an ace. It’s just that this year has worked out well,” he said, adding, “I have two or three more years of this kind of performance. This year, I felt that I didn’t sacrifice enough for the team last year, so I prepared for the season for the team and it paid off. I think it will help us as we prepare for the upcoming season.”
He wasn’t too worried about his record for most innings pitched and most wins in a game. “Whether it’s positive or negative, it’s not good to think too much on the mound. I wanted to simplify it, but I kept thinking about it and chasing it,” he said. “I prepared a lot to throw the ball where I wanted. I practiced every day for ten days. I practiced every day for 10 days. I used image training to learn how to focus when I had such thoughts.”
“I do image training in detail. I imagine the color of the grass, the smell of the stadium, the manager of the opposing team, and even the worst case scenario of throwing three balls with the bases loaded. My arm doesn’t hurt even if I keep doing this. 바카라사이트 It only takes five to ten minutes. I practice drawing and erasing beforehand,” he said, explaining his image training know-how.
LG, the regular season champions, will begin preparations for the Korean Series at their secondary base camp, Icheon Champions Park, on April 19 after a three-day break. The long-awaited first game will be held on April 7 at Jamsil Stadium in Seoul.
“I cried a lot in my living room in 2002 when I saw LG lose the Korean Series, and I remember all the players. “I’m not going to worry about what I’m pitching until the manager tells me to come down, and I’m going to pitch my heart out. That’s the way to get good results,” he said.
We also heard from reserve free agent Im Chan-gyu about his determination to play in the StubHub League. “I’m thinking that the manager will take care of me a lot,” he said with a smile.