Moon Dong-ju, 20, the “160-kilometer fireballer” prized by the Hanwha Eagles of the Korean Baseball Organization (KBO), is in a bit of a slump. He was the ace of a young, generationally-changing national team at last year’s Asian Games and Asian Professional Baseball Championship (APBC), winning Rookie of the Year honors, but he hasn’t gotten off to a good start this year.

Moon gave up nine runs on 10 hits (three home runs), one walk, one hit batsman and one strikeout in 3 1/3 innings against Doosan in Daejeon on April 28. The nine runs were the most allowed in a single game for Moon, who made his debut in 2022. Moon, who suffered his second loss of the season (one win) as Hanhwa fell to 8-17, also saw his ERA jump from 6.56 to 8.78. His ERA is the highest among the 35 pitchers with at least 25 innings pitched.

Moon, who has pitched in an up-and-down fashion, winning his first start of the season only to struggle in the next game, struggled in both games last week. Against Suwon KT on the 23rd, he failed to make it out of the fifth inning after allowing five runs (four earned) on seven hits, two walks, 스포츠토토 and one hit batsman in 4⅔ innings with four strikeouts.

He gave up a big five-run inning in the first inning and his pitches didn’t respond.

After giving up a single to Jung Soo-bin, he threw a three-pitch fastball to Heo Kyung-min that was too deep and led to a double play. He induced a grounder to Yang Ji, but after getting two strikes, his next three to five pitches were well out of the zone. In the second and third pitches of the inning, he threw a 1-2 changeup to Kim Jae-hwan that was a ball. The first pitch was high and away. The third pitch, a 124-kilometer curveball, was left high and dry up the middle. Woo smashed it over the fence for a three-run home run.

The next batter, Yang Seok-hwan, saw a four-seam 126-kilometer curveball driven to center for a solo home run to left. One after another, the changeup found its way to the hitters. In the next at-bat, a fastball to Henry Ramos was high and outside. The ball was heavily bound in front of the first baseman and went out to right for a double. Jun-young Park fouled off a fastball and a changeup, both of which were out of the zone. With the bases loaded, Cho gave up a sacrifice fly to deep right field, again on a high fastball. In the first inning alone, he threw 33 pitches, giving up five runs on five hits.

After a scoreless second and third inning, the Hanwha bats scored six runs to pull within 6-5, but Moon gave up another big inning in the fourth. After giving up an infield single to Cho Sung-yueng on a wild pitch, a stolen base and a sacrifice bunt led to a single to left by Heo Kyung-min to tie the game. Yang then hit a mis-hit ball that landed in front of the center fielder to put runners on first and second, and Kim Jae-hwan gave up another three-run homer. The second pitch was a 137-kilometer slider down the middle that Kim couldn’t miss. A three-run home run, 120 meters away.

Moon’s total pitch count for the day was 75, with 45 strikes for strikes, a 60 percent ratio.

His fastball was up to 157 kilometers per hour and averaged 150 kilometers per hour according to TrackMetric, but it wasn’t in the zone. There were a lot of balls, and the ones that were centered or high up the middle went straight for long balls. Even with the fastest pitches, he was unable to hold onto them.

Before the game, Hanwha manager Choi Won-ho explained Moon’s up-and-down pitches, saying, “It’s not like he has a physical problem or anything. He’s in good shape, but his performance varies from day to day depending on his physical condition.”

His velocity is lower on the PTS than on the Trackman, but even with that in mind, his velocity has dropped a bit. His average fastball velocity on the PTS dropped from 151.0 kilometers last year to 149.0 kilometers this year, a decrease of two kilometers. While the drop in velocity may not be a complete loss, he still has the fastest average velocity among Korean starters. His home runs have increased significantly to six this year, but only one was hit by a fastball.

The biggest reason for the decline may be the shakiness of his pitches. His walks per nine innings have increased from 3.2 last year to 4.4 this year. Meanwhile, his first-pitch strike rate has dropped from 62.6% to 54.3%. The pitches he’s throwing into the zone for strikes in unfavorable counts are hitting the bats of hitters.

Whatever the reason, Moon’s faltering performance has put the Hanwha starting rotation in jeopardy.

Last week, not only Moon, but also Ryu Hyun-jin (5 innings, 7 hits, 2 walks, 4 strikeouts, 7 runs, 5 earned) and Felix Peña (4 innings, 7 hits, 1 homer, 3 walks, 2 strikeouts, 5 runs, 4 earned), Hwang Jun-seo (3⅔ innings, 6 hits, 2 doubles, 2 homers, 5 walks, 2 strikeouts, 6 earned runs), and Ricardo Sanchez (4⅓ innings, 10 hits, 2 walks, 2 strikeouts, 6 earned runs).

After bursting onto the scene early in the season with strong starting pitching, Hanwha has been fading. After giving up five or more runs in six straight games, 슬롯사이트 순위 Hanwha’s starting ERA dropped from third (3.78) to eighth (5.25) in a single week. It’s unfortunate that Kim Min-woo, who started the season strong, is out for the season due to elbow surgery. It’s also difficult to give a starter like Moon Dong-joo time to regroup if he continues to struggle.

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