“I want to throw a lot of innings with fewer pitches”…what’s next for NC’s Song Myung-ki, who won his first start in 119 days
“I will do my best to throw a lot of innings with fewer pitches in my next appearance.”
This is what NC Dinos pitcher Song Myung-ki had to say about his recent rebound after a rough start to the season.
Song Myung-ki started a home game against the Kiwoom Heroes of the 2023 KBO Baseball League at Changwon NC Park on June 6.
Drafted by NC with the seventh overall pick in the 2019 second round, Song is a right-hander whose strength is his powerful fastball. In 59 career games (321.2 innings) in the first team through last year, he posted a 22-19 record with a 4.87 ERA. In the 2020 season, he pitched Game 4 of the Korean Series against the Doosan Bears, earning the win and helping the NC win the title.
However, Song has struggled this year. He started the season as a starter, but struggled to pitch consistently and often found himself in the Futures (second division) league for the first half of the year. He then made it to the first division, but couldn’t find a spot and was used in the bullpen. Before this Kiwoom game, his record was 2-7 with a 5.37 ERA in 22 games (68.2 innings).
Fortunately, he rebounded with a strong outing against the Busan Lotte Giants (6-3 NC win) on April 1, pitching six innings of three-hit ball with two walks and three strikeouts. Although he was unable to get the win due to a late rally by the bats, it was certainly a promising performance.
Song Myung-ki was also in great form from the start of the day. In the top of the first inning, he struck out Kim Jun-wan, Kim Hye-sung, and Ronnie Dawson for a triple play. In the top of the second, the leadoff hitter Kim Hui-jip was hit by a pitch and Lee Ju-hyung’s sacrifice bunt put runners on first and second, but Kim Dong-heon and Kim Tae-jin got out of the inning with a grounder to third and a fly to center, respectively.
Stability continued in the top of the third. Kim got Kim Soo-hwan and Ye Jin-won to fly out to center field and ground out to first base. They gave up a walk to Kim Jun-wan, but induced Kim Hye-sung to ground out to second base to end the inning.
The no-hitter and scoreless streak was broken in the top of the fourth inning. He struck out the leadoff batter, Dawson, but gave up a walk to Kim Hwijip and then a two-run arch over the right field fence to Lee Ju-hyung.
The crisis continued. Kim gave up an infield single to Kim Dong-heon. Kim Tae-jin followed with a grounder to the second baseman, but a wild pitch put runners on second and third, where Song Myung-ki gave up a single to center field to Kim Soo-hwan. He struck out Ye Jin-won to get out of the jam.
In the top of the fifth, he settled down. He induced back-to-back flies to right field against Kim Jun-wan and Kim Hye-sung. Against Dawson, he got the final out of the inning with a fly to left field.
The final line was five innings, three runs, one hit, three walks, five strikeouts and three hits. His total pitch count was 86. Coming off the mound with his team leading 8-3, he picked up his third win of the season as NC never allowed the tying run to score and went on to win 12-7. It was Song’s first start in 119 days since April 9 against the Changwon Kiwoom.스포츠토토
After the game, NC head coach Kang Myung-hwa praised the pitcher, saying, “Song Myung-ki did his job perfectly as a starter and laid the foundation for the victory.”
With the win, NC extended its winning streak to four games and moved into sole possession of third place in the standings with 48 wins, one draw and 43 losses, ahead of KT Wiz (49 wins, two draws and 44 losses).
Song Myung-ki said through the club, “The team can win and continue the winning streak.