After an ambitious start, Uhm Sang-baek’s (28-KT Wiz) preliminary free agency season hasn’t gone as expected. The majesty of the winning percentage king, who once beat Kim Kwang-hyun (SSG Landers), is nowhere to be seen.

Uhm suffered his fourth loss of the season after giving up four runs on seven hits with one walk and five strikeouts in five innings of work in the third game of the 2024 Shinhan SOL Bank KBO League against SSG Landers at KT Wiz Park in Suwon on Thursday.

The Rangers jumped out to an early lead in the first inning. Landers struggled with the table-setter. After giving up a leadoff single to Choi Ji-hoon, he stole second and then walked Shin-Soo Choo on seven pitches. He then struck out Choi on a swinging strikeout to get out of the jam, but gave up a leadoff single to left field on a seven-pitch at-bat to Guillermo Heredia. Han Yoo-seom struck out swinging to end the inning and Park Sung-han flied out to left field to end the threat.

In the second inning, things settled down temporarily.

He faced Go Myung-joon, Lee Ji-young, and Kim Sung-hyun in an 11-pitch, three-hit shutout inning and gave up a single to Choo Shin-soo in the top of the third, but struck out Choi Jung on a fly ball to left field and Heredia on a swinging strikeout in the bottom of the seventh. He upped his fastball velocity from the low 140s to the mid-90s and shut down SSG’s center field.

Uhm Sang-baek ran into trouble again in the fourth inning, still trailing 1-0. After leading off with a single to center, 바카라사이트 Han Yoo-seom was hit by a pitch to put runners in scoring position. He got Park Sung-hwan to fly out to first base and Ko Myung-joon to ground out to center field, but gave up three consecutive singles to Lee Ji-young, Kim Sung-hyun and Choi Ji-hoon (who doubled) to load the bases. Fastballs in the low 140s fell prey to them in quick succession. He then got Choo Shin-soo to fly out to shortstop to end the inning, but three runs had already been scored.

Uhm struck out Choi Jung, Heredia, and Han Yoo-seom in the fifth inning, again on nine pitches. He reached 90 pitches and was down 0-4 when he gave way to Lee Chae-ho in the sixth inning.

KT fell to 1-8 and suffered its fourth loss of the season.

Uhm Sang-baek, KT’s first pick in the 2015 rookie draft out of Duksugo, has been a consistent first-team regular and will enter his preliminary free agency season at the young age of 28. He was often referred to as a love-hate pitcher in the early stages of his career as he often fell short of expectations, but he used his move to the Sangsang as a turning point in his career and made the leap to become one of the top submarine pitchers in the league.

His career high came in the 2022 season.

He settled into the starting role and increased his value by going 11-2 with a 2.95 ERA in 33 games. He won his first 10 games in his debut on September 25 against NC and his first 10 starts on October 8 against KIA, and his .846 winning percentage made him the KBO’s leading ace, surpassing Kim Kwang-hyun (.813-SSG).

Last year, he was limited to 20 games and 111⅔ innings before suffering a microfracture of a rib late in the season. However, he has been consistently earning opportunities and taking the mound since his debut in 2015, which is why he is entering this year’s pre-free agency season. If he finishes the 2024 season without incident, he will be eligible for free agency.

He was selected as the fourth starter behind William Cuevas, Wes Benjamin, and Young-pyo Ko after attending spring training camps in Busan and Okinawa, Japan. “You don’t think of it as a free agency season, you think it’s the same year. Even if you think about it, you shouldn’t be too conscious of it,” he said of his determination to play this season.

However, after five games, Uhm Sang-baek is struggling with a 1-4 record and a 6.55 ERA.

After giving up four runs in four innings against Samsung Electronics in Suwon on March 24, he gave up four runs in three innings against Hanwha in Daejeon on March 30, three runs in five innings against KIA in Suwon on April 3, and rebounded with one run in five innings against Changwon NC on April 9, but the day before, he bowed his head again and became the pitcher with the most losses in the league (four).

Just like last year, KT is having a tough time this year, slumping to 15-15 and ninth place in the early going. With Ko Young-pyo suffering an unexpected injury, the team is practically starting with Cuevas, Benjamin, and Uhm Sang-baek. 안전 토토사이트 Even though he is a free agent, the team desperately needs Uhm Sang-baek to rebound. He needs to regain the majesty he once had when he overtook Kim Kwang-hyun for the win percentage title.

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