“It’s the first time I’ve seen him use a fake stop like that”
Kia Sanchez made his first start of the 2023 Shinhan Bank SOL KBO League against KT at KT Wiz Park in Suwon, Gyeonggi-do, on the afternoon of 9 September.
Kia won 5-1 against KT on the day, extending its winning streak to five games and jumping to sixth place with 35 wins, one draw and 38 losses, one game behind seventh-place Kiwoom.
Sanchez, who plays for the Tung Yi Lions in Taiwan, earned the win in his debut against KT, allowing five hits (one home run) and one run in 6.1 innings with 10 strikeouts. Throwing 88 pitches, Sanchez recorded 19 outs. His four-seam fastball topped out at 147km/h and he baffled KT batters with a variety of pitches, including sliders, two-seamers, changeups and curves.
One in particular, a unique fake interception, was so unusual that commentator Park Jae-hong said, “I’ve never seen it before.” With a runner on first base, Sanchez would hesitate for a moment and look at first base, causing first baseman Kim Min-hyuk to rush home.
In the bottom of the sixth inning, Sanchez bent his left knee and faked a bunt before getting into a set position at second base. First baseman Kim Sang-soo flinched. Sanchez then twisted to first base and made the catch.
Both runner and batter were a little surprised. The next time, he threw the ball straight to first base without a fake. KT manager Lee Kang-cheol approached the umpire and appealed to the umpires about Sanchez’s fake catch, but it was not accepted.스포츠토토
KIA’s Sanchez looks at the runner at first base and goes into a set position.
Sanchez bends his knees again to look at the runner at first base after the set position.
Sanchez suddenly twists his body to cover first base.
The runner at first base reacts to Sanchez’s sudden interception.
Sanchez never allowed a single stolen base while playing for the Tung Yi Lions in Taiwan. His attention to runners kept him focused in the batter’s box.
In the bottom of the seventh inning, with Kia leading 5-1, Sanchez handed the mound to Choi Ji-min and headed for the dugout. The impressive Sanchez stands at 5-foot-11 and weighs 200 pounds. A native of Venezuela, Sanchez spent 10 seasons in the minor leagues and one season in the Chinese Professional Baseball League (CPBL).
This year, he pitched in 10 games for the Tung Yi Lions, going 8-1 with a 1.44 ERA in 62⅔ innings pitched. In the minor leagues, he appeared in 210 games (77 starts), compiling a 44-33 record with a 3.94 ERA, and earned a $280,000 salary to don the Kia uniform.