Following the hardships of June, July is also hard. While the starting lineup was stable, the relief team was in trouble.
The strength of the Lotte Giants’ bullpen in April and changed selection in May stood out. However, with the hotter heat, the bullpen is collapsing.
Lotte’s bullpen ERA through the 8th was 5.20. It is the lowest among 10 teams. In particular, the average ERA since June has reached a whopping 6.22.
There is no clear winning trend. Set-up man Koo Seung-min, who stands in front of finisher Kim Won-joong, has an average ERA of 6.08 since June and 6.52 in the last 10 games. The sluggishness of Kim Sang-soo, who led ‘Movement’ at the beginning of the season안전놀이터, and Kim Jin-wook, who was included in Pil Seung-jo, is even more serious. Closer Kim Won-joong (2.25) is keeping face, and only Choi Yi-jun (1.74) and Jin Seung-hyeon (3.14), who usually pitch in games where the winners are divided, are only abiding.
It was worthwhile to end the losing streak on the 6th, and the collapse of Koo Gu-jin in the match against the LG Twins in Busan on the 8th led to a large number of runs. Expectations from home fans were hot as he ran for 8 consecutive games with quality starts (6 or more starting innings, 3 earned or less).
He gave Austin 3 RBIs including a home run, but the game was tight at 3-3 until the 5th inning. Park Se-woong gave up 1 point in the 6th inning and was replaced at 2nd, 1st and 3rd base.
It collapsed rapidly after Park Se-woong’s steel plate. Kim Jin-wook was hit with a timely hit, and Park Se-woong’s two successor runners all hit home.
In addition, 11 games have already been canceled due to rain, which is a burden on the mind. It is after September 10th that they are intensively organized, but Lotte has a gap between Park Se-woong and Na Kyun-an, who are called to the Hangzhou Asian Games national team. Good results are good for both the team and the players, but if it is limited to this season, it becomes frustrating.
The national team is convened around the 22nd to 24th, and after digesting domestic training for several days, departs for Hangzhou and participates in the Asian Games baseball held on October 1st to 7th. The rainy season is starting now. It is self-evident that more games canceled due to rain in July and August will increase.
For Lotte, there is no choice but to rely on Han Hyun-hee, who goes back and forth between selection and Pilseung-jo, with Kim Won-joong as the axis, and Choi Jun-yong, who has returned. The road to the top 3 in the regular season is a thorny road that gets more difficult as you go into the second half of the season.
On the other hand, the starting team’s strength, which has changed since May, is also revealed in the bullpen’s innings. The Lotte bullpen is digesting the fewest innings among 10 clubs with 257⅔ innings. There is also the style of Lotte coach Larry Sutton, who leads the starting lineup for a long time, but on the contrary, it means that the bullpen does not give as much trust. The starting lineup is ranked 4th overall and 5th even after June.
With Park Se-woong and Na Kyun-an at the center, Barnes is gradually regaining a sense of stability. If Strayley rebounds and Lee In-bok shows the same appearance as last year, he has enough potential to rise to the top. However, if the strong bullpen does not support the back, the starting pitchers will become impatient.