Crow, who showed off his ball power of 154km in maximum restraint

최고구속 154km' 구위 뽐낸 크로우, '투구수 관리' 숙제로 남았다 [광주 현장]

KIA Tigers foreign pitcher Will Crow harvested his second win of the season based on his strength of ball power. However, managing the number of pitches remained a homework.

Crow started Game 1 of the 2024 Shinhan SOL Bank KBO League season against the Samsung Lions held at Gwangju-KIA Champions Field on Monday, and recorded two hits, three strikeouts and no run in five innings. Crow pitched 93 pitches, following fastballs (34), sliders (31), changeups (16), sweeper (7), two-seam (3), and curve (2). The maximum speed of fastballs was 154 km/h.

Crowe won the opening game of the regular season against the Kiwoom Heroes on April 23 by allowing six hits (one homer) and five strikeouts (four earned runs) in five ⅔ innings, and became a losing pitcher in the game against the Doosan Bears in Jamsil on April 30 by allowing six hits (one homer) and five strikeouts and five runs in four ⅓ innings. Compared to his previous two appearances, Crowe was not too bad in terms of content.

Crow made a good start by blocking the top of the second inning without allowing a single run. However, the process was not easy. Kim Hyun-joon in the top of the first inning and Kang Min-ho in the top of the second inning dragged on to a seven-pitch game, and Kim Young-woong, who was at the batter’s box with two outs in the top of the second inning, bullied Crow by hitting a double after a 10-pitch game. Crow then threw 36 pitches during the first two innings of the game.

Crow finished the inning relatively quickly with 17 pitches in the top of the third inning and 11 pitches in the top of the fourth inning, but threw 22 pitches in the top of the fifth inning alone, and was no longer able to defend his mound. He had to be satisfied that he met the requirement to become a winning pitcher. KIA started its bullpen session from the top of the sixth inning with its 3-0 lead, and maintained its lead until the end with its 5-2 victory.

The coach encouraged Crow by stressing the positive aspects. “Crow was not responsible for many innings due to the number of pitches, but he did not allow any runs, contributing greatly to the team’s victory,” Kia Tigers coach Lee Bum-ho said.

Crow, who became the winning pitcher in about two weeks, was also aware of his shortcomings in the content of his pitches. Crow said, “I prepared a lot to throw according to the situation and count. I’m satisfied with the content of the game, and I like how the game went as I wanted.”

“It was a bit disappointing because I had a walk. I tried to control the number of pitches with changeups, my main weapon, but I think the number of pitches increased because Samsung hitters endured the changeups well. Next time, I think we need to find a way to further supplement that and control it,” he said.

Meanwhile, Crow also didn’t forget to mention catcher Han Jun-su. In the previous two games, he had a battery with Kim, and for the first time on the day, he played with Han. Crow expressed satisfaction, saying, “I prepared consistently before the game with Han Jun-su, and I had a conversation about how to throw and what I wanted, so I think this result came out.”


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