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Choi Won-Tae to LG…Can 21-year-old fireballer afford to play in bullpen, ‘ultimate question’ needed

First, Jang Jae-young (21, Kiwoom) has been transformed into a bullpen player. Manager Hong Won-ki had hinted at it a few times. However, we need to think about Jang’s use in the long run.

With Choi Won-tae (LG) traded, the Kiwoom five-man rotation was realistically expected to consist of Ahn Woo-jin, Ariel Hurtado, Ian McKinney, Jeong Chan-heon, and Jang Jae-young. However, against Jamsil LG on February 1-2, Hong Won-ki defied expectations and used Jang Jae-young in the bullpen.

Of course, Jang Jae-young had started against Gocheok Samsung Electronics on the 30th of last month, but after being shaken up in the first inning, he left the game with a headshot. He gave up six runs on six hits with one walk and one strikeout in ⅔ innings. Threw 38 pitches. It’s not hard to see him going to the bullpen on one day’s rest.

It’s unclear if this is a temporary bullpen stint or a full-time move to the bullpen. Currently, there are some options in the first team that could be used as a fifth starter in addition to Jang Jae-young. This includes second-year starter Joo Seung-woo, who was a starter in the second team. Given Jang Jae-young’s track record, he is not guaranteed a starting spot.

To take advantage of his fastball, Jang Jae-young could be moved to the bullpen entirely. In fact, for two days against LG, he was hit and walked, but didn’t give up a run. It’s a win-win if the player gains confidence and the team benefits.

However, in his third year, it’s time for the organization to show a clear master plan for Jang Jae-young. It’s true that he’s bounced back and forth between the starting and bullpen over the past three years, but if Kiwoom ultimately sees Jang as a starter, temporary bullpen stints to rest the existing bullpen resources don’t mean much. If he’s going to be a starter, it makes sense to give him consistent opportunities as a starter.

If Jang Jae-young continues to struggle with his mechanics and command, there is a risk in moving him to the bullpen. Despite the internal debate, there are many outside observers who believe Jang should be a starter.

With a 1-3 record and a 5.30 ERA in 13 games this season, the 21-year-old fireballer’s third year as a highly touted prospect has gone by without much impact. Kiwoom gave the pitcher the highest contract in franchise history (900 million won). Kiwoom is good at recruiting and nurturing rookies, but they are having trouble with Jang Jae-young. The timing of his military service is also an important issue.먹튀검증

If all else fails, the last resort is the bat. Jang Jae-young was a pretty good hitter in high school. Last winter, he pitched for Geelong Korea in the Australian Professional Baseball League, and this year he took the bat in exhibition games. However, it’s unrealistic to expect him to bat in the first team, and if he doesn’t succeed as a pitcher, he can always switch to hitting later. It’s true that Kiwoom is missing one hitter. Of course, Jang Jae-young still has a great desire to succeed as a pitcher.

Even if he didn’t meet expectations for three years, he still has a long way to go at 21. He should try everything he can. However, he needs to show a clear direction.

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