Moon Dong-joo 157km, PAVG 0.181 vs 0.290… What happened to one, two, three, four?

“On one-two-three-four, I almost throw it home.”

Hanwha fireballer Moon Dong-ju (20) will be a full-time starter for the first time this year. There is no doubt that he, along with Kim Seo-hyun, is the man to end the dark ages and usher in a new era for Hanwha.

However, Moon Dong-ju still needs to fill in the details as a starter. His fastball is still more of a raw, rough stone. In eight games, he’s 2-4 with a 4.74 ERA. There are command and delivery issues that come with being a fireballer. That doesn’t mean he walks a ton of batters. 20 in 38 innings. That’s not unmanageable. Of course, we have to look at the slight increase in May.메이저놀이터

The underlying concern is his BABIP. With runners on base, it’s 0.181, but with runners in scoring position, it’s 0.290, and with runners in scoring position, it’s 0.300. Against KIA on the 25th, he pitched rather shakily with runners on base. No-decision in 4 innings with 5 hits, 2 walks and 3 strikeouts. His fastball touched 157km.

SPOTV commentator Lee Dae-hyung, who broadcast the game, said, “Moon Dong-ju has a high strikeout rate with runners on base. He almost always pitches to one, two, three, four. If you pitch at a certain tempo when there are runners on base, the runners anticipate it and start.”

This is very important. Obviously, a fireballer has to gather less energy when pitching from a set position than when pitching from a windup. This could have a subtle effect on the difference in ERA with and without runners on base. Furthermore, if you pitch at a constant tempo with runners on base, you’re giving them the opportunity to steal or aggressively run the bases, which means you’re more likely to give up a run when you get a hit.

It also means that Moon isn’t a very good runner stopper. In the first inning, with the bases loaded and Socrates Brito at bat, he committed a walk. Commissioner Lee Dae-hyung said, “The balk was called because the step was twisted in the blocking motion and the pitch was not delivered. My foot didn’t come off (the pitching plate), so I was forced to throw a blocking pitch, but it wasn’t balanced. I’m not a long-time pitcher yet, so I’m not good at catching runners,” he said.

A pitcher’s greatest virtue is minimising runs. While it’s important to keep runs out of scoring position, improving your ability to strand runners also increases your chances of containing them. “If you’re off-balance in your delivery, it’s because you’re in a hurry,” Lee said.

He added, “You have to be erratic with the timing of your pitches. It’s not good to pitch at a constant tempo, like four or three and a half. You can give up a stolen base that takes away your timing. He’ll get better as he gains more experience.” Moon still needs to work on his runner control and pitching tempo.

The encouraging thing is that he hasn’t given up a single home run this year, which means he can be more aggressive with his pitches. The quality of his curveball and changeup has also exceeded expectations.

Lee Dae-hyung said, “It’s hard for hitters to hit Moon’s pitches if they don’t have the timing in front of them, but if the ball is too fast, it’s hard to move forward. That’s why he needs to pitch aggressively. After the second inning, it’s much better to be bold than to give up four runs.”

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