Shadow of 20-win monster pitcher chasing them “It’s natural to be compared”

Last year, NC Dinos Eric Peddy dominated the KBO League.

20-6 losses in 30 games, 209 strikeouts in 180 ⅓ innings, 2.00 ERA. No. 1 ERA, multiple wins, and No. 1 strikeouts. Winning against teams before the minimum number of games under the 10-team system. Triple crown for the first time as a foreign pitcher. 20 wins and 200 strikeouts in a single season as a foreign player. And the 2023 KBO League MVP.스포츠토토

As an active major leaguer, I had high expectations since I joined the league, but when I opened the lid, it was more than that. After dominating the league, he made his big league comeback after just one season. He was treated more favorably and opened his second chapter as a big leaguer with the Chicago White Sox.

Because he was such an outstanding pitcher, NC’s new foreign pitchers Kyle Hart and Daniel Castano naturally have Peddy’s shadow. Since Peddy’s comeback to the Major League, NC has replaced both foreign pitchers with new faces. The season started with question marks that led to “Can I do as well as Peddy?”

So far, both players have been satisfied. Though not as strong as Pedi did in the early days of last year’s season, he has displayed A-list performances side by side. Hart posted a 3-1 record with a 3.00 ERA in six games. At a match against the Lotte Giants held at NC Park in Changwon on Sunday, he became the winning pitcher by allowing no runs, including four hits, 10 strikeouts, and four outs, in seven innings, the highest since the season’s opening.

Castano struggled somewhat with six runs in five innings against the Doosan Bears in Jamsil on the 25th, his most recent appearance, but he had a 100% quality start in all of his previous five appearances. As foreign pitchers do not skip the rotation and consistently make quality starts, NC’s domestic starters also gain stability. NC’s domestic starters, Shin Min-hyuk, Lee Jae-hak, and Kim Si-hoon, have never missed the rotation.

The label on him is taken as a sense of goal, not a burden. “Peddy really did a great job. I think it’s only natural to be compared to him,” Hart told reporters after the Lotte match on Wednesday. “I want to throw as well as Peddy, but I think it’s better to fill the victory in my own way, in my own style.”

At the match against KIA on Tuesday, right before the Lotte Giants took the mound, he allowed six runs (four earned runs) in five innings, the most since the opening of the match. “As I failed to put the ball into the strike zone, I was not able to exert an active competition. However, it was not that I was not good at the game, but rather that the flow of KIA batters was so good, and they performed very well. I would like to consider that even greater,” Hart said.

Despite their unfamiliar life in Korea, Hart and Castano are adapting to the KBO League by relying on each other. Hart said, “I’m talking a lot with Castano. They complement each other’s strengths and weaknesses. In my case, I’ve been listening to a lot of Castano’s feedback since I pitched. I have trust in Castano.”

NC didn’t have a chance to win the championship last year, but since the opening, the team has turned around with “Ace” Peddy. In the postseason, he started with the wild card game, went through the semi-playoffs, and advanced to the playoffs. As Peddy took the center stage, the rest of the team settled down.

This season, Hearts and Castano were given this role. So far, it has been very smooth. If the two players, who are adapting to the KBO League by relying on each other, continue to play as they have been, NC can look higher than last year.

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