“The professional baseball veteran is alive” The cheerful rebellion of released players

SSG veterans in their 40s, Noh Kyeong-eun and Ko Hyo- jun, overcome the sorrow of being released and sign a salary increase. Lim Chang-min signs a 2-year, 800 million won free agent contract with Samsung. Kim Jin-seong takes a key position in LG’s bullpen.

For veteran players, ‘release’ usually means the end of their career. However, there are players who turned their release into an opportunity. The player’s earnest heart and the team’s faith in the veteran combined to produce an unexpected result.

Professional baseball SSG’s veteran bullpen duo in their 40s, Noh Gyeong-eun (40) and Ko Hyo-jun (41), are representative examples. According to the results of the 2024 season salary negotiation announced by SSG on the 6th, Noh Kyung-eun signed for 270 million won, a 100 million won increase from last year, and Ko Hyo-jun signed for 153 million won, a 68 million won increase.

The two players were on the verge of retirement just two years ago. This is because after the end of the 2021 season, the team at the time was notified that the contract could not be renewed. However, after changing to SSG uniforms ahead of the 2022 season, the two became indispensable players for the team. As the core of the right-hand and left-hand bullpens, respectively, they contributed greatly to SSG’s combined victory in the 2022 season.

The age-defying performance of the two continued last year. Noh Kyung-eun pitched in 76 games, more than half of the regular season, in which each team plays 144 games, and recorded 9 wins, 5 losses, 2 saves, 30 holds, and an ERA of 3.58. It was the most appearances in a season since 2003, when he made his professional debut at Doosan. Although he lost the title by 2 holds to KT’s second-year pitcher Park Young-hyun (21, 32 holds), the competition was fierce until the last minute.

Ko Hyo-jun also pitched in 73 games last year, leaving a record of 4 wins, 1 loss, 13 holds, and an ERA of 4.50. He appeared on the mound the second most times after appearing in 75 games in 2019 during his Lotte days. Ko Hyo-jun, who received an annual salary of 50 million won when he joined SSG in 2022, rose to an annual salary of 85 million won this time, followed by 85 million won last year.

Veteran pitcher Lim Chang-min (39), who signed a two-year free agent contract with Samsung on the 5th for a total of 800 million won, is also the protagonist of the released player rebellion. Lim Chang-min, who served as NC’s closing pitcher for three years from 2015 to 2017, was named on the list of releaseees after the end of the 2021 season due to a decline in skill. He wore a Doosan uniform in 2022 and appeared in 32 games, recording 2 saves, 6 holds, and an ERA of 3.95, but was released again after one season. However, after transferring to Kiwoom last year, he revived with 2 wins, 2 losses, 26 saves, and an ERA of 2.51 in 51 games. Samsung said, “By recruiting Lim Chang-min, we have built the best bullpen in the league. “It will create a positive synergy effect with the younger players on the team.”

Kim Jin-seong (39), who went from being a released player to becoming the core of LG’s bullpen, also played the best performance of his career last year at the age of 38, contributing to LG winning the Korean Series for the first time in 29 years. After being released from NC after the 2021 season, Kim Jin-seong called the remaining 9 clubs to find a new team. In the end, Kim Jin-seong, who started a new home at LG, established himself as LG’s sure-to-win team in the 2022 season and signed a free agent contract for 700 million won for two years. In the 2023 season, he appeared in 80 games, the most since his debut, and recorded a career-high ERA of 2.18. 스포츠토토맨

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