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Agent management ahead of ML love call?

NC Dinos' super ace Peddie is ultimately unable to play in what could be the team's last fall baseball game. Although the club, not a 'super agent', is fully monitoring the situation, it seems that the fatigue that has already accumulated cannot be helped.

NC announced Shin Min-hyuk as the starting pitcher for the game against KT Wiz in the 5th game of the '2023 Shinhan Bank SOL KBO League' postseason playoffs held at KT Wiz Park in Suwon on the 5th. KT, as expected, is Wes Benjamin.

They are facing a situation of 2 wins and 2 losses to advance to the Korean Series. NC gained momentum by winning the 1st and 2nd games, but lost the 3rd and 4th games and was pushed to the brink. As the team marched hard from the wild card game, their stamina and concentration gradually decreased. As they lost both games 3 and 4 without any help, the trend shifted towards KT. The person who could lift this depressed atmosphere and turn the tide was Fedi.

However, Peddie's starting pitch in Game 5 failed. After the 4th game of the playoffs, coach Kang In-kwon said about the starter for the 5th game, “Peddy’s condition has not recovered to 100%. “Shin Min-hyuk’s condition is not bad at the moment,” he said, adding, “I will check his condition tomorrow (4th) morning and make a decision.” He did not confirm whether Peddie will start.

In the end, Shin Min-hyuk was announced as the starting pitcher for Game 5 instead of Peddie. Maybe it was decided early on that Shin Min-hyuk would start. Pedi's fatigue was higher than expected and did not go away even after 5 days of rest.

During the regular season, Peddie was a special ace in the KBO League. Until last year, the experience of playing the starting rotation at a major league club was at a level that overwhelmed the league. In 30 regular season games, he recorded 20 wins, 6 losses, an earned run average (40 earned runs in 180⅓ innings), and 209 strikeouts.

He achieved the Triple Crown by ranking first in both wins, ERA, and strikeouts. It was the 4th in history as a player and the 7th in terms of number of times. Sun Dong-yeol recorded the triple crown a total of four times, in 1986 and from 1989 to 1991. Since then, Hanwha Ryu Hyun-jin in 2006 and KIA Yoon Seok-min achieved the triple crown in 2011. Pedi has set a record for the first time in 12 years.

In addition, his record of 20 wins and 200 strikeouts is also the 5th in history. Sammi Jang Myeong-bu (30 wins, 220 strikeouts) was the first to achieve this in 1983. Afterwards, Choi Dong-won of Lotte (27 wins, 223 strikeouts) in 1984, Kim Si-jin of Samsung (25 wins, 201 strikeouts) in 1985, and Sun Dong-yeol of Haitai (24 wins, 214 strikeouts) in 1986 achieved this record. recorded. Fedi became the first player in the 21st century and the first foreign player to record 20 wins and 200 strikeouts 37 years after Sun Dong-yeol.

However, on the 16th of last month, in the game against Gwangju KIA, which was his last appearance during the regular season, he collapsed after being hit by a hard ball on his right forearm. He devoted himself to recovery. He skipped both the wild card game and the semi-playoffs. Because they showed overwhelming performance throughout the season, fatigue was bound to build up. He has already surpassed the career high number of innings. He prepared to start the third game of the semi-playoffs, but his start was postponed due to symptoms of right elbow impingement syndrome. The team finished the semi-playoffs in three games, giving Peddie plenty of time to rest.

Finally, after about two weeks of rest, he started in the first game of the playoffs on the 30th of last month. He showed off a more powerful pitch than in the regular season. Two-seam fastballs (37) with a maximum speed of 155km penetrated every corner of the strike zone, and the main weapon sweeper (49) was also sharply deflected. Peddie made the KT batters go crazy and showed his all by throwing 98 pitches in 6 innings, allowing 3 hits (1 home run), 1 walk, 12 strikeouts, and 1 run. The 12 strikeouts was a new record for most strikeouts in a single game in playoff history.

After resting for 5 days, it seemed like I could get back on the mound. However, it was not possible to completely recover from the already accumulated fatigue. He threw a total of 186⅓ innings in the regular season and postseason (180⅓ innings in the regular season + 6 innings in the postseason) and 3,002 pitches (2,904 pitches in the regular season + 98 pitches in the postseason). He's never thrown so many balls in his career.

There is only one win left in the Korean Series, the best stage of the KBO League. It is a winner-takes-all game, and if you lose, you are eliminated. However, NC did not push Pedi's appearance schedule too far. The NC club and Peddie did not make the final move.

Currently, Major League Baseball's interest in Peddie is increasing. cited Merrill Kelly (2015-2018 SK), who led the Arizona Diamondbacks to the World Series this year, as an example, saying, “Kelly, who grew up in the KBO League, became a key player in Arizona’s National League championship. It is predicted that Peddie will also return to the big league and enter the starting lineup.”

In a situation where there is already a successful case of reverse export, major league clubs have no choice but to keep a close eye on Peddie's outstanding performance. Therefore, there is a possibility that the agency, not the club, can manage the physical condition of Peddie, who has already played a lot. Peddie's agency is Boras Corporation, run by 'super agent' Scott Boras.

NC used Jeff Manship from Boras' division as a foreign player in 2017. However, the agency, Boras Corporation, managed the rehabilitation schedule of Manship, who suffered from elbow pain in the middle of the season. NC had difficulty managing Manship's rehabilitation schedule at the time. Manship showed an overwhelming performance of seven consecutive wins in the opening game, but was sidelined for about two months starting in May due to elbow pain. He left Korea after one year with relatively average records of 12 wins, 4 losses, and ERA of 3.67 in 21 games.

But Pedi’s situation is completely different. NC Director Lim Seon-nam said, “There was no additional examination for Pedi. “He needs to manage the fatigue that has accumulated in his elbows and shoulders as he goes through the season,” he said. Regarding whether the agency would intervene, he said, “Not at all.” That doesn't happen at all. I hope things like that don't come out anymore. “That will never happen,” he said firmly. It has been confirmed that the club is fully managing Peddie's physical condition and that Peddie's physical condition is currently not 100%.

NC, which has to play the game without a pedi, entrusted the fate of advancing to the Korean Series to Shin Min-hyuk, the Cinderella of this year's postseason. Shin Min-hyuk laid the foundation for victory in the first game of the semi-playoffs against SSG on the 22nd of last month by allowing 4 hits, 1 walk, 3 strikeouts, and no runs in 5⅔ innings. He also won the second PO game against KT on the 31st with a pitching pitch of 6⅓ innings, 1 hit, 1 walk, 2 strikeouts, and no runs. He is showing his presence as a big game feature with 12 scoreless innings. His fastball velocity is not fast at a maximum of 144 km/h, but he has good ball control, and he dominated the postseason by combining the cutter and change-up he learned from Peddie.
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