LG Twins manager Yeom Kyung-yeop called the hot summer months of July and August “backup time. He said he would use the backups to give the starters a break because if he continued to use the starters during the hot summer months, they could lose their stamina and struggle later on.
Yeom chose Lee Jae-won and Kim Min-sung Son Ho-young as the backups to replace the main players. Lee Jae-won will replace Hong Chang-ki, Park Hae-min, Moon Sung-joo and other left-handed outfielders, while Son Ho-young will replace Oh Ji-hwan at shortstop. Kim Min-sung will back up the first, second, and third base infielders.
Yoon said he intends to use Lee Jae-won in particular often in the future. “If I rest Hong Chang-ki, Park Hae-min, and Moon Sung-joo, Lee Jae-won will naturally play more often,” he said. “Lee Jae-won didn’t feel like hitting too much in June, but he trained a lot. He came out early to take batting practice and continued to take batting practice after the game. The hitting coaches had a hard time with it.” “If Lee Jae-won’s hitting isn’t too bad, I’ll continue to use him,” Yeom said.
Unfortunately, Yeom’s backup’s time in the lineup struggled from the very first day against the Jamsil KT Wiz. Lee Jae-won was still not hitting well, and Kim Min-sung was not feeling well and was replaced early. Son Ho-young made an unfortunate error that led to a run.
The most unfortunate player was Lee Jae-won. Lee started the game in left field and went 0-for-3 with two strikeouts. In his first at-bat in the first inning, he hit a 136-kilometer cutter up the middle on a 4-2 pitch, but it was flied out to center field.
His second at-bat with the bases loaded and two outs was a bit of a disappointment. Hong Chang-ki hit a two-run double to cut the deficit to 2-4. Bringing home the second baseman would have cut the deficit to one run and put pressure on KT.
The opposing starter, Benjamin, looked shaky with two consecutive first-pitch strikes, and Lee Jae-won fouled off three straight pitches. The seventh pitch was a 139-kilometer drop cutter, but he struck out swinging.
Trailing 2-6 in the fifth inning, he was also unable to handle the bases loaded. He was aggressive from the start. After hitting a 133-kilometer changeup for a foul, Lee swung at a 136-kilometer cutter in the second pitch. In the third pitch, he picked a low 122-kilometer curveball, but Lee couldn’t hold onto the fourth pitch. He struck out again on a 137-kilometer cutter that fell toward his body. He was replaced by Moon Sung-joo in the top of the sixth inning.
He still hasn’t gotten over his poor handling of balls in play, which has been criticized since the beginning of his debut. After going 6-for-6 with five strikeouts in 2S, 14-for-1 with 10 strikeouts in 1B2S, 17-for-12 with 12 strikeouts in 2B2S, and 4-for-1 with two strikeouts in 3B2S, he is just 2-for-41 after 2S, with a 4.09 batting average and a whopping 29 strikeouts. That’s a 70.7% strikeout rate, and that’s a lot to handle in 2S.먹튀검증
Even if I wanted to play him consistently, I’d be reluctant to leave him out and put Lee Jae-won in at this point. This is the year he chose not to join the team. Yeom promised to keep him in the lineup, but three injuries have already diminished his role, and his slump has further diminished it. I wonder when we’ll see the power of his batting speed of over 180 kilometers again.