The biggest concern of young Korean men is when to leave the military and finish their military service. In particular, in the case of KBO league players, choosing the timing of military service can be a very important decision for the team as well as the player himself. Some players enlist as soon as possible and complete their military service, while others delay enlistment for the sake of team performance.
Born in 1996 and graduating from Dong-A University, right-handed orthodox pitcher Lee Jeong-yong, who joined the LG Twins as the first choice in 2019, pushed for enlistment as a managing director after the end of last year’s season. However, along with his teammate Lee Jae-won, he canceled his enlistment. This is because coach Yeom Kyung-yeop, who is aiming to win the championship by taking the baton of LG, asked Lee Jeong-yong and Lee Jae-won to continue playing in 2023.
There was also an expectation that Lee Jung-yong would be selected for the Hangzhou Asian Games scheduled for September. Last year, Lee Jung-yong appeared in 65 games and recorded 4 wins, 4 losses, 1 save, 22 holds, an earned run average of 3.34, and an OPS (on-base percentage + avoid slugging percentage) of 0.639, the most holds since his professional debut. If he continued to fight at a level similar to or better than last year, he could have tried to benefit from military service by participating in the Asian Games in Hangzhou. 메이저놀이터
However, Lee Jung-yong’s start this season has been extremely sluggish. He appeared in 15 games and recorded 2 wins, 3 holds and 1 save, but his detailed indicators are poor with an average ERA of 5.93 and an OPS of 0.834. He also has a high WHIP of 1.61, the average on-base allowed per inning.
Lee Jeong-yong, who served as the temporary closer in place of finisher Go Woo-seok, who was delayed joining the first team due to injury, recorded 5 blown saves, which is the most in the league. After Go Woo-seok’s return, Lee Jung-yong returned to last year’s position as setup man, but he is still uneasy. In the 3rd home game against the KIA Tigers last weekend, Lee Jeong-yong recorded blown saves on the 28th and 30th of April. LG, which had Lee Jeong-yong’s hunting difficulties, fell into a 3-game losing streak after losing 3 games in a row over the weekend.Lee Jung-yong’s sluggish performance seems to be related to a decrease in fastball velocity. The average velocity of the fastball, which was 146.8 km/h last year, decreased by 1.6 km/h to 145.2 km/h this year. Moreover, the location of the fastball as well as the breaking ball is generally high, so it is easy to allow decisive long hits. In the games on the 28th and 30th of last month, all high misses led to long hits, resulting in blown saves.