Oh Seung-hwan (41), the ‘final boss’, played a reverse fight as if he were originally a starting pitcher. In his out-of-bullpen start, he put on a ‘fight for life’ in front of 13,394 spectators.
Seung-hwan Oh started the game against the Kiwoom Heroes held at the Daegu-Samsung Lions Park on the 3rd and recorded 5 hits (1 home run), 6 strikeouts, no 4 walks and 3 runs in 5 innings.
Oh Son-hwan pitched in all 620 games of his KBO career as a relief pitcher. He established himself as the best closer in Korea with 374 career saves. The nickname ‘the final boss’ could sum up Oh Seung-hwan’s career in one word. 80 saves in 127 games in Nippon Professional Baseball. In the major leagues, he also showed off his competitiveness as a ‘final boss’ by posting 42 saves in 232 games.
However, this year, Oh Seung-hwan came down from the finishing position as his pitching and pitch hunting came at the same time this year. He had an average ERA of 4.50 with 1 win, 1 loss, 4 saves and 2 holds in 10 games this year. He came down from the finishing position and had his first start to get some sense.
Starting in 621 games brought many new records not only to Oh Seung-hwan but also to the KBO League. He broke the records of the most games (621 games) and the oldest first start (40 years, 9 months, 18 days). His previous highest number of games was 336, which was recorded by KT Jeon Yoo-su in a match against Gocheok Kiwoom on June 18, 2019. His oldest record for first start was Chan-ho Park’s age of 38 years, 9 months and 13 days on April 12, 2012 against Doosan in Cheongju.
Oh Seung-hwan was deeply regretful in the first episode. Leading hitter Lee Jung-hoo handled the pitcher’s ground ball after three pitches. However, he threw a flat slider to Chun-Hyeok Park and allowed a double to left center. He threw a side slider after a full count match with Kim Hye-sung in the crisis of 1 company and 2 base, but it was hit. Connected with superiority two run four. Third home run of the season.
Afterwards, Russell gave up a double in the middle, but Lee Won-seok was caught with a shortstop ground ball and Lee Hyeong-jong with a center fielder’s floating ball to finish the first inning. He threw 21 balls.
The second time went smoothly. Lim Byeong-wook struck out three pitches with a fastball and curve combination, and Kim Hui-jip threw three straight fastballs to eliminate a swinging strikeout. However, after two outs, Ji-Young Lee got a hit to the right, and Jung-Hoo Lee gave up a double at the right time in the middle left, conceding an extra run. Park Chan-hyeok finished the second inning with a floating ball to the second baseman.
In the 3rd inning, he made his first tripartite inning. Leading batter Kim Hye-seong induced the second baseman to ground, and Russell caught it with a floating ball to the right fielder. It was a good hit, but it went straight to the right fielder. And Lee Won-seok threw a curve with 1 ball and 2 strikes and struck out with a swing. 3rd strikeout.
Oh Seung-hwan threw 47 balls until the third inning. In the 4th inning, the first batter Lee Hyung-jong was struck out by looking. Against Lim Byung-wook, he struck out on a swing with a curveball. And even Kim Hwi-jip was set up as a first baseman foul fly. 2 consecutive innings, 3-way offense.
Even in the 5th inning, Oh Seung-hwan came to the mound. The lead hitter Lee Ji-young was grounded by the pitcher in three pitches, and Lee Jung-hoo was caught by the catcher with a grounder in the first pitch. And after a full count match against Park Chan-hyuk, he struck out on a swing. He filled 5 innings in his first start, breaking all of his personal records for the most innings pitched, the most strikeouts, and the most strikeouts. 안전놀이터
With 34 fastballs of up to 149 km, 21 sliders, 12 forkballs, and 6 curveballs, he cooked Kiwoom’s batting line while using various pitches as well as stone fastballs. In particular, the more innings he went through, the more he found stability and even showed how he was adapting as a starting pitcher. He was the adaptability of the oldest starting pitcher who could promise even the next opportunity.
However, Oh Seung-hwan’s fighting spirit did not lead to ideal results. The Samsung batters could not overcome the fact that they allowed 2 runs in the 1st inning and 1 run in the 2nd inning. Kiwoom starter Ariel Hurado could not overcome 8 innings and 1 run. Oh Seung-hwan became a losing pitcher.