It keeps the fielding time short, so the guys don’t make mistakes. It keeps them focused at the plate.”
KT Wiz head coach Lee Kang-cheol also had high praise for Ko Young-pyo, who has been pitching well of late.
Selected by KT with the 10th overall pick in the 2014 second round, Ko is a right-handed sidearm pitcher who is known for his accurate delivery and a changeup with a big drop. In 203 career games (746 innings) through last year, he compiled a 43-43 record with seven shutouts and a 4.25 ERA.
This season, Ko has continued to show his true colors, going 10-5 with a 2.44 ERA in 20 games (19 starts – 125.2 innings) on a 9-day basis. His upward trend has been especially pronounced as of late. He has 10 consecutive quality starts (six or more innings pitched and three or fewer runs allowed), and since last month’s game against the Suwon KIA Tigers, he has had five consecutive quality starts plus (seven or more innings pitched and three or fewer runs allowed).
KT manager Lee Kang-cheol, who met with the team before their game against the Suwon Hanwha Eagles on the 8th, said of Ko, “He’s a really good pitcher. If any team has a pitcher like this, it will be easy to organize the starting rotation,” and gave him a thumbs-up, saying, “He seems to be throwing really well.”
The best thing about Ko is that he doesn’t give up a lot of strikes, and he has the ability to induce walks. His walks per inning allowed (WHIP) is just 1.00. That means he only leaves an average of one runner on base per inning.
This has led to less time on defense for the outfielders, as well as shorter games. The average duration of Ko’s 19 starts this year is 2 hours and 57 minutes. That’s well below the average for 10 clubs.
“Sometimes I wish I could avoid it, but it just comes in (laughs). “Sometimes I wish I could get away with it, but he just comes in.” “He keeps the defense short, so the hitters don’t make mistakes. It keeps them focused at the plate. That’s probably why his winning percentage is better.”
Young-pyo Ko’s best pitch is his changeup, which, as mentioned, has a big drop. However, the commander had a different idea. The power of the changeup is one thing, but Ko’s pitch selection is another.
“He uses his head a lot,” Lee said. It’s not that he doesn’t know (the changeup), but he chooses it well. As you play more and more games, pitching patterns come out, and he changes them well with (catcher) Jang Sung-woo,” Lee said. “Sometimes he goes to a fastball when he thinks he should go to a changeup, and sometimes he goes to a slider.”
“When (the changeup isn’t good), you throw it and it’s yours. Then later in the inning, I’ll throw my changeup again. He’s good at finding good spots. He’s got experience and he knows what he’s doing,” he said, adding, “That’s what makes him a really good pitcher.”
After falling to the bottom of the standings early in the season due to a series of injuries to key players, KT has seen a resurgence in its starters, including Go Young-pyo, and now sits in fourth place with 50 wins, two draws, and 344 points, tied with the third-place NC Dinos (49 wins, one draw, and 43 points). After struggling to accumulate wins early on, Ko Young-pyo picked up his 10th win of the season against the Jamsil Doosan Bears on Nov. 6 to reach double-digit wins for the third straight season.메이저놀이터
Manager Lee Kang-cheol said, “When things weren’t going well in the beginning, it was frustrating because he was throwing well and not getting results. Now, if I can keep him in check, the batters give up two or three runs, and the bullpen has improved a lot,” Lee said.