Left-hander Thomas Panoni (29), who wore a KIA uniform as a substitute foreign player last year, heard somewhat embarrassing news after the season ended. As a player, he thought he would be able to renew the contract safely, but the news he heard was that the contract renewal was not possible.
It was not unreasonable for Panoni to expect a renewal of the contract. Since joining, Panoni has thrown 82⅔ innings in 14 games, recording an average ERA of 3-4 and 2.72. He didn’t have much difficulty attaching the word ‘stable’ even if it wasn’t to overwhelming grades. His grades were proving it.
He didn’t have very fast average velocity, but his walks per 9 innings weren’t high at 2.61, and he averaged 6 innings per game. 메이저놀이터 He was talking about consequences, not redemption. Considering the fact that there is a shortage of pitchers in the major leagues and the upper limit on the annual salary of new foreign players ($1 million), there was no 100% guarantee of finding such players again.
However, KIA decided to find a player with a stronger pitch than Panoni and Sean Nolin, who last year were together. It was an adventure to climb higher. With Sean Anderson and Adonis Medina recruited, Panoni left Korea alone. He also had a difficult time going through the process from Triple-A after signing a minor league contract after failing to receive a major league guaranteed contract offer.
However, the relationship with KIA did not end there. KIA, who felt threatened by Medina and Anderson’s uneasy pitching, contacted Panoni again and presented a contract, and Panoni chose to go to Korea. And while still showing off good skills after re-enrollment, the possibility of renewing the contract this year is increasing.
Panoni has played 22⅓ innings in 4 games since joining, recording 2 wins and an undefeated ERA of 2.01. On the 5th, against Hanwha in Gwangju, he led the team to victory by making a good fight with 10 strikeouts and 3 runs in 6⅔ innings to save the tired bullpen. If his first 2 games were a process of readapting to the Korean stage and improving his condition, in the next 2 games where the restrictions were removed, he showed his strength by recording quality starts (6 or more starting innings and 3 earned runs or less).
There is no big difference between last year and the average speed of the four-seam fastball itself. However, the tracking data shows that the vertical and horizontal movements have improved little by little. KIA coach Kim Jong-guk also said of Panoni, “I think his adaptability has improved. There were some areas where he had difficulties while rotating in the second half, but he threw 6 innings steadily.” It comes in well. The trajectory is almost the same as the four-seam. I feel that the movement has improved for both the four-seam and the cutter.”
Veteran catcher Kim Tae-goon, who received the ball from Panoni on the 5th, also praised the ball for being more powerful than it looks. It is a ball with an average speed of 140 km per hour, so the physical restraint is not that fast, but it has more power than restraint.
Kim Tae-gun said, “There is something that touches me a little more than restraint. Here is the cutter.” It’s not an absolutely fast ball, so it’s visible, so batters’ bats go out, but because it moves well, it induces a lot of hits and misses. In fact, Panoni’s strikeouts per 9 innings improved from 7.95 last year to 9.27 this year. Fireballer-class strikeout ability.
It is KIA that struggled greatly after changing all foreigners this year. If Panoni plays such an active role, there is a high possibility that a spot for a foreign pitcher next year will be decided early. First of all, there is a big difference between carrying a card that has been clearly verified and not carrying it. However, the concern lies elsewhere.
Sanchez, who was called by KIA after working as the highest level pitcher in the Taiwanese league, raised expectations by making an outstanding performance with 10 strikeouts and 1 run in 6⅓ innings against kt on July 9, which was his first appearance. Although he gave up 4 runs against Doosan on July 21, he showed his power with 10 strikeouts in 6⅔ innings. But lately it’s been sluggish. After collapsing with 10 hits and 7 runs in 4 innings against Samsung on the 1st, he failed to fill another 5 innings with 5 hits, 4 walks, 6 strikeouts and 4 runs in 4⅓ innings against Hanwha in Gwangju on the 6th.
Sanchez was also praised for his power on the ball, although he is not a fast-paced player. He also has many pitches he can throw, such as slider‧cutter‧sweeper‧changeup. However, after 2S, he is struggling a bit in the game, and the pattern of winning the deciding ball is becoming clear as the opponent batters read the strengths.
KIA is the team with the most games remaining among the 10 clubs. When the starting rotation is stable, they can plan a counterattack in the second half. To make matters worse, it is all the more so considering that Eui-ri Lee is missing from the Asian Games schedule. Panoni as well as Sanchez have to do their part to survive, but if even one player goes wrong, the burden on the bullpen will increase and the last minute schedule will inevitably become burdensome. Although it is still five games, Sanchez’s average ERA for the season is 6.49, which is no better than Medina (6.05), who was expelled.