Hanwha manager Choi Won-ho has yet to confirm the ace pitcher who will lead the mound of the Eagles in the 2024 season. While renewing his contract with Felix Peña, who had the most wins among his team last year, he established the third starting pitcher leading to Peña, Ricardo Sanchez, and Moon Dong-ju, that does not mean that Peña is definitely the first starting pitcher. Ryu Hyun-jin, the “99th ace,” has yet to sign an FA contract with a Major League club.라바카지노주소
Coach Choi Won-ho has completed his plan for rotation of starting pitchers for the 2024 season at the first spring camp, which is underway at the Melbourne Ball Park in Melbourne, Australia. Peña and Sanchez, who scored a renewal of their contracts side by side, will take the center stage, followed by Moon Dong-ju, who won the Rookie of the Year award with eight wins last year. The remaining two spots are Kim Min-woo, Lee Tae-yang, Kim Ki-joong, and rookie Hwang Jun-seo, who are included in the candidate list, and the final two winners of the 4-2 survival match will be decided through exhibition games with spring camps in Australia and Japan.
Choi, who met at the second day of the camp on the 2nd, made a cool assessment that there was no special selection. Choi said, “In my judgment, our mound does not have a special selection. It is the same for both starters and bullpen. There is no special express and only A-level. It can be said that there are even three-tier players, but now we have to divide the order of the players and make a good strategy.”
Hanwha has been thirsty for a “high-end starter” for more than 10 years since Ryu left for the Major League in 2013. While ace pitchers have often appeared in foreign pitchers, Ahn Young-myung (10 wins) in 2015 and Kim Min-woo (14 wins) in 2021 were the only pitchers in Korea that won 10 games. Foreign pitchers also did not have special resources such as Eric Peddy, Josh Lindblom, Eric Jokish, and Raul Alcantara to win 15 games or more.
Hanwha, which failed to take the fall stage at the end of the 2018 season, is looking at the upcoming 2024 season as the right time to take off. If there is a perfect harmony between Young Power such as Noh Si-hwan, Moon Dong-ju, Kim Seo-hyun, and Hwang Joon-seo and Old Power such as Kim Kang-min, Lee Jae-won, Chae Eun-sung and An Chi-hong, they will be able to advance to the semifinals. What is left is the strongest first starting position that overwhelms batters, but expectations are growing that Ryu Hyun-jin’s remaining project in the Major League will be difficult and that he may return after 12 years.
“I’m also waiting for (Ryu Hyun-jin), but I’m not sure what will happen,” Choi said with a smile. The team’s manager also said he doesn’t know what kind of future Ryu will take. However, it is true that expectations continue to grow as news of his contract with the U.S. has not been heard all along.
The head coach plans to lead spring camps in Melbourne and Okinawa with Ryu
s return in mind. The basic plan is the 2024 season without Ryu, but Choi also has a scenario in his mind when Ryu returns. The Hanwha Eagles 2024 season opener is the LG Twins, the unified champion last year, and if Ryu returns, he can face off with the champion team as the left-handed ace who has 78 wins in total in the Major League. Choi is a leader who believes that winning the opening series is so important that it determines farming conditions for a season.
Choi said, “We can stop expecting Ryu only when we hear the news of the U.S. contract. We will set up a strategy to distinguish between when Ryu is with and without him.”
Ryu Hyun-jin, who seeks to remain in the Major League, is currently constantly connected with multiple clubs, including the San Diego Padres, Baltimore Orioles, Boston Red Sox and San Francisco Giants, and is waiting for a contract. Although it was once expected to return to Hanwha, he is looking for major league teams that can sign contracts by conducting personal training.
The U.S. is giving a good impression on Ryu, who turned 37 this year. Even though his heyday is over, the fourth and fifth starters in the Major League Baseball are expected to be able to fully perform their duties. They have ample experience, insight, and precise control of the ball. The Major League’s spring camp is also about 10 days away, and Hanwha has been added to Ryu’s option again, but there are still quite a few teams in the U.S. that are keeping an eye on him.