Kwak Bin’s “AG Behind Story”

Doosan won two consecutive games by winning 3-1 in the final regular season match against the KIA Tigers of the 2023 Shinhan Bank SOL KBO League at Jamsil Baseball Stadium in Seoul on the 13th. Doosan, which finished the match against KIA with 12 wins and 4 losses this season, marked 73 wins, 2 draws and 65 losses.

Kwak Bin’s good pitching in charge of starting was crucial. Kwak Bin pitched 109 pitches in six innings, and won his 12th win of the season with two hits, two outs, nine strikeouts and one run. Following the match against KIA in Gwangju on the 18th of last month, which was the previous game, he achieved a quality start for two consecutive games.

Kwak Bin, who joined the national team at the 2022 Hangzhou Asian Games, has been away for more than two weeks due to the call-up of the national team. In addition, after leaving Hangzhou, China, in the process of preparing for the first group match against Hong Kong, he felt a sore back and was unable to take the mound normally. Although he belatedly raised his physical condition, he had to finish the tournament without taking the mound.

Kwak Bin, who focused on recovery for a while even after returning to Korea, prepared everything in time for this day. Before the game, Doosan manager Lee Seung-yeop said, “It is said that there is a very slight (biliary symptoms) left, but I don’t think it is a situation where we can’t play. “Today is the day the team sufficiently matched (Kwak)bin, and I prepared for the game accordingly because he said it was okay today,” he said, expecting Kwak Bin’s good pitching.

Kwak Bin dispelled concerns by spraying a fastball of more than 150km/h from the top of the first inning, and continued his scoreless march until the top of the third inning. In the top of the fourth inning, leadoff batters Kim Sun-bin and Socrates caused a crisis of first and third bases with no outs, but Kwak Bin’s one run was all he had on the day.

Kwak Bin finished the inning without additional runs by striking out Kim Tae-gun and Byun Woo-hyuk, respectively, in the top of the fourth inning, and in the top of the fifth and sixth innings, he showed his power with two consecutive three-and-out innings. In particular, he struck out nine, recording the most strikeouts since the away game against Hanwha (10) on August 1.

After the game, Kwak Bin said, “In fact, after joining the national team, the balance was so good that I thought there was only one thing left to do well, but I think I forgot about that balance a little bit because I had symptoms of stiffness. Whether the team’s ranking will go up or down depends on one game, and it seems to have been difficult continuously listening to bad things. With this game, I think I strongly recognized and threw it, saying, “Let me show you a little bit,” he said. “It was honestly bad at the beginning of the game, but the coach helped me and the batters scored and threw it with a comfortable mind, which led to a good result.”

The fact that the number of sliders (54) was higher than the number of fastballs (35) had some effect. Coach Lee Seung-yeop said, “Starting pitcher Kwak Bin pitched well. Catcher Yang Eui-ji skillfully combined the ball and blocked six innings with one run.

What does Kwak think. He said, “The fastball doesn’t go into the strike zone. (Yang) Eui-ji senior also quickly found out (that part) and asked for a lot of sliders, but the sliders went really well into the strike zone. I think that’s why I used the slider boldly and aggressively,” he said.

I’m not in perfect shape. Kwak Bin said, “To be honest, my symptoms of gall have not completely healed, but I think they are almost all better now. “I still have a slight feeling, but it’s not enough to throw with care,” he said. “I think I had no choice but to throw only six innings because I had a lot of pitches in the first place.”

Kwak Bin, who finished taking the mound in the regular season following the Asian Games, had a lot to say. “It was so hard. “I felt so sorry for (Kim) Dong-ju and other players,” he said, first mentioning his sorry for his teammates and then explaining the situation after the symptoms occurred in China.

Kwak Bin said, “I was warming up two hours ago ahead of the Hong Kong match in the first round of the group league, but I thought I had a stiff neck, so I asked the trainer, ‘Can’t you do something?’ The training part asked me not to overdo it and take a break that day, and the next day, pitching coach Choi Il-eon asked me to go out and play catch, so I thought I could throw it if I took a break. However, the fever went up nearly 39 degrees that night because of the body aches,” he confessed. In addition to the symptoms of gall, there was another reason why Kwak Bin was not in good condition.

He said, “In that state, I groaned alone at dawn and got three injections to relieve my pain after getting an IV in the morning, but it didn’t get better. I got a shot on my day off, and I got a needle that loosened my muscles, and my throat was relieved. I think I’ve been preparing since then,” he said. “I waited from the second round of the Super Round against China, and I also pitched at that time. He also relaxed his arms from the second inning in the final against Taiwan, and fortunately, the starting player (Moon) threw it so well. “In the second half, there are must-win groups, so I thought it was right to leave them,” he said.

Kwak Bin, who won the gold medal without playing a game, went home with a heavy heart, but encouragement from his colleagues and seniors poured in. I learned some things while preparing for the competition.

Kwak Bin said, “Every time I saw him, I said sorry. My brothers and juniors said they were okay and encouraged me a lot, he said. “I went to the national team twice this year to the World Baseball Classic (WBC) and the Asian Games, and I always felt that ‘I’m still an infinitely poor player’. Taiwanese and Japanese pitchers were really good. “I don’t think I’m that good yet, so I always seem to be humble when I come back,” he lowered his stance.

Kwak Bin, who made up for his disappointment with his last regular season appearance, now pledges to play in fall baseball. “I think I’ve relieved a little bit, and if I get selected for the national team again at the next international competition, I really want to show it then,” he said. “I believe that good results will come out if you rest well and maintain this sense and throw it in fall baseball with strength.”


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