“I feel like I am always confident. You can look forward to every match. I am running towards my goal every game, trying not to be lazy.”안전놀이터
‘Great Pitcher’ Yang Hyeon-jong (35, KIA) won his 161st personal career win against SSG in Gwangju on the 9th, rising to a tie for second place in the KBO League’s all-time winning streak. He stood shoulder to shoulder with Jeong Min-cheol and came closer to the record of the most wins by “Peregrine Falcon” Song Jin-woo (210 wins).
His highest velocity was 146km and his lowest speed was 129km, so he was excellent at controlling the speed of his ever-changing fastball. In addition, Yang Hyeon-jong threw a variety of sliders (29 pitches), changeup (19 pitches), and curve (2 pitches) to effectively subdue the SSG lineup for 8 innings.
Photo = Reporter Kim Won-ik
And Yang Hyeon-jong conveyed his confidence in recovering to the best times in front of the fans who chanted him after the game. The same was true in the interview that followed. He said, “There is still a long way to go” to his goal of 210 wins, and he expressed his simple but great sincerity, saying, “I will do my best diligently while preparing every day so as not to be lazy.”
The following is a Q&A with Yang Hyeon-jong.
It must have been a stressful game (with Kim Gwang-hyun and the opponent winning 5 consecutive wins)
. Since I am not fighting the pitcher, I am fighting the opponent hitters, so I thought more about analyzing my battles and things like that. I think it led to good results because I was in good condition.
Han Seung-taek, whom I worked with, said, ‘The fastball was especially good,’ but
I wasn’t in bad shape, and I rested a lot, so I climbed the mound with my shoulders and other parts in good shape. It seems that I pitched aggressively, managed the number of pitches, and things like that worked well.
The relay camera caught me burning my willpower in the ninth inning.
(Slightly laughing) I was a little greedy because I thought this kind of opportunity wouldn’t be common anymore, but the coach said, ‘There is also a Sunday game.’ In addition, I trusted Hae-young because (Jeong) Hae-young was in the stage where his condition was improving a lot. He had such a desire to throw if the score gap increased, but unfortunately the score ended scoreless at the end of the 8th inning, so he trusted Hae-young and came down.
At the end of the 8th inning, what did you talk to pitching coach Jung Myeong-won?
He asked if I would throw more, but I honestly wasn’t sure, but (Han) Seung-taek said, “Believe in yourself and throw because the ball is good,” so I trusted Seung-taek and told Coach Jung, “I’ll throw more.”
I caught 10 strikeouts against opponents who are winning 5 consecutive wins. What was your pitching strategy?
The biggest thing was that I was in good condition, and I was able to pitch where I wanted because the location and things like that worked well. In the 7th and 8th innings, the strength decreased, but it seems that throwing while adjusting the speed of the fastball or the speed of the breaking ball gave results physically and in various ways.
In fact, the lowest fastball speed came out to 129 km. Was it part of the rapid adjustment
? After a long selection, I now have a feeling. If there is a feeling that this batter is a little ‘not likely to hit’ (adjust the tempo). I practiced steadily since the camp, and now that I am older, I feel the limits of my stamina to forcefully threaten. That’s why I tried to make adjustments as quickly as possible. The overall balance was not bad, so I was able to save a lot in terms of physical strength as I was able to control it where I wanted.
Did you practice the slow fastball separately?
I did it little by little. I don’t have the same speed as when I was young and in good condition, so I think studying and training worked well for today’s game.
Photo = KIA Tigers
There was a lot of interest in the head-to-head matchup with Kim Gwang-hyun. Have you thought about past matches
? As I said before, I deal with SSG hitters. Before the game, it was a burden and I thought a lot, but from the moment I entered the game, I think I thought and analyzed SSG hitters more. That’s why I didn’t have time to think about confrontation with (Kim) Gwanghyeon. I think I was thinking more about trying to block SSG hitters well.
There is a possibility that they will face each other again in the rotation this season. Wouldn’t it be a head-to-head match that fans are still interested in?
I wanted to win in a case like today, but I don’t think we’ll ever meet, no matter how much the rotation goes together. Me and (Kim) Kwang-hyeon would feel burdened by meeting him. That’s why I don’t want to play games like this anymore. I hope that Gwanghyeon wins and I win and always have good results.
in the past, since high school, we have always heard the word ‘rival’, but now that the older players are getting older and more young players are coming up, I think of it as ‘companion’ who have been playing baseball together for a long time rather than the word rival. do. Like Gwanghyeon and I, I want to continue without getting sick. We are working hard so that the younger players can beat us up more, and we and the players of our age are also working hard. That’s why rather than describing us as rivals, we’re companions and friends who have been together since we were really young in our 20s. I hope that both I and Gwanghyeon will always do well, and I really want to play baseball for a long time without injury.
Photo = KIA Tigers
With a personal total of 161 wins, he became tied for second in the KBO League’s all-time winning streak
. Commissioner Jeong Min-cheol is also a really great senior, so I always respect him. Now, that goal (210 wins) is too far away, so I’m really trying not to be lazy about exercising or preparing various things. The future is too far away, but while trying to chase after it, I am running towards my goal without becoming lazy. We will prepare for the next match and the match after that.
Even at the beginning of this season, there are 3 games with 7 or more innings. He also said to the audience, “I think I can return to my good form,” but
he always seems to be confident. When I stand on the mound or the day I pitch, my goal is always to win. so you have confidence Of course, my body isn’t the same as before, but I’m preparing well. While preparing for the start, I am preparing a lot of things so that I am not lazy, so I think it would be good to look forward to every game. I plan to do my best (always) to throw.