Why did LG invest 200 million won in pitchers with “zero actual games in two years”

The NC Dinos were more worried about which player would play in the second draft than about which one to choose. “When I compared the 35-member draft protection list with other teams, I expected that four players from our team would leave unconditionally,” manager Kang In-kwon said. This meant that NC had an abundant player base, and the leak was considered force majeure.

The second draft can be selected from 35 protected players, registered players excluding players with first to third years of experience, foreign players, or FA players, players who foster them, and players who maintain their military presence. This year’s rankings will be reversed, and the third round will be played until the third round. Teams ranked eighth and 10th will be given a maximum of two additional picks. In addition, the maximum number of sebum-named players per team was limited to four in order to prevent leakage of players from certain teams discovered in the second draft.

As manager Kang In-kwon predicted, NC had four players leave. SSG selected catcher Park Dae-on in the first round and Hanwha named pitcher Bae Min-seo in the second round. And in the third round, KT picked infielder Kim Chul-ho and LG picked pitcher Lee Jong-joon. Kim Chul-ho and Lee Jong-joon are currently in the status of fostering players. 슬롯머신

The leakages of Park Dae-on and Bae Min-seo were expected to some extent. In the case of Kim Cheol-ho, he was recovering from his injury, but he made an internal conclusion that KT had been watching him consistently. In fact, NC was agonizing over it when making a list of 35 players to protect, and the player who unexpectedly escaped was Lee Jong-joon, LG’s choice.

After graduating from Gunsan Commercial High School, Lee Jong-joon was named 81st in the second round of the ninth round in 2020. He is 191 centimeters tall and weighs 93 kilograms. He is not highly ranked on the list and is currently a player of training. After returning from active military service, he was preparing for his return by throwing in the Education League this year.

Since he served in the military, he has never played in an actual game for two years. In 2021, he had three wins and zero earned runs in eight games, which is all his record in actual games. While his ball control was shaky, he garnered 11 strikeouts. He was an orthodox pitcher who could throw fastballs in the mid-140km range. It hardly constitutes an instantaneous power.

However, he took note of his potential for growth. Having passed both rounds, LG nominated him in the third round, its last chance. In other words, LG invested 200 million won (approx. 200 million won) in a pitcher who had never played in an actual game for two years.

Manager Kang In-kwon said, “In fact, Lee Jong-joon was a player who thought a lot about whether we should also put him in the 35-member protection team,” and expressed his high potential within the club.

However, within the club, it was determined that Samsung and Lotte in the Yeongnam region would have been paying attention to Lee Jong-joon. Rumors have it that he faced off relatively often in the education league and displayed good pitching during the process as well. Therefore, NC was wary of Samsung and Lotte’s choice.

However, Lotte could not afford to pay attention to Lee Jong-joon. Lotte’s urgent priority was to fill the infield gap created by An Chi-hong’s transfer to the Hanwha Eagles as a free agent, while Samsung’s priority was to reinforce bullpen resources that can be deployed immediately from the first division. Both Samsung and Lotte passed Lee Jong-joon. However, LG surprised NC by naming Lee Jong-joon in the last order of designation in the third round.

“I had no idea that LG would nominate him. I think LG probably paid attention when I was playing an education league game after I was discharged from the military this year. I heard that his ball power was good at that time,” manager Kang In-kwon said. “I have no experience in the first division, but my ball power has improved beyond recognition. Now that I have completed the military service in my fourth year this year, I have a chance to grow.”

Although he recorded two scoreless innings against LG in the Futures League in 2021, he can be seen as discovering another potential for Lee Jong-joon, who met him in this year’s education league, and invested 200 million won in this potential.

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