Hit by a 1-homer batter, ‘league’s strongest’ Pedi hesitates
Sajik Stadium was shocked. A major league pitcher, throwing a major league pitch, collapsed. The KBO’s career 1-homer hitter was hit by a single and collapsed. NC Dinos Eric Peddie pitched his worst game in the KBO and was sent down.
Pedi started the regular season game of the 2023 Shinhan Bank SOL KBO League against the Lotte Giants at Sajik Stadium in Busan on Feb. 2 and gave up five runs on nine hits (one home run) in four innings with one walk and two strikeouts. The team fell to 3-6 and suffered its third loss of the season (14 wins).
Peddy, who was a five-starter in the major leagues until last year, came to the KBO and dominated the league by “destroying the ecosystem. But on this day, Pedi pitched his worst game of the season. He pitched the fewest innings, most hits, and most runs of the season. His streak of sub-1 ERAs came to an end. After 17 games with a sub-one ERA (1.74), his worst outing of the season pushed his ERA to 2.10.
He started the game with a triple play in the first inning, but faltered in the second and gave up a run. In the top of the second, he gave up back-to-back singles to Jeon Jun-woo and Lee Jung-hoon to put runners on first and third. Park Seung-wook gave up a single to right field that went over the first baseman’s head. He allowed a stolen base and a walk to Noh Jin-hyuk to load the bases.
He induced a foul fly to center field and showed willingness to chase it down and handle it himself, but a wild pitch allowed the second run to score.
The Tigers got a run back right away, and in the bottom of the inning, Kim Min-seok gave up back-to-back singles to Goodrum, putting runners on first and third with no outs. However, Jeong Hoon Jeon and Lee Jung-hoon overcame the deficit by striking out the key hitters. The bats then gained momentum and scored two runs in the top of the fourth inning. With the score 3-2, they were on their way to the winning pitcher requirement.
In the bottom of the fourth inning, Pedi suffered an unexpected blow. He gave up an infield single to leadoff hitter Park Seung-wook. He then induced Noh Jin-hyuk to fly out to second base, but it wasn’t enough for the kill. Shortstop Kim Joo-won’s throw to first base went just wide.
The improbable happened. With the bases loaded and one out, he threw a 130-kilometer sweeper (a curveball in home run analysis) for a two-run home run to left field. It was the seventh home run of the season for Pedi, who had six this year. And it was against a guy who had hit just one home run in 235 games and 478 at-bats in his career.
Pedi couldn’t believe it either, as he threw a body sweeper and hesitated immediately after the hit. He hoped that the ball wouldn’t go over, that it would bounce off the foul pole, but as he hesitated, he put his head down and realized the tragic ending.
It ended up being a 3-4 count. Ahn Kwon-soo then flied out to left field for the second out, but two batters later, he gave up a leadoff double to Kim Min-seok and a single up the middle to Gudrum. It was the fifth run.
In the end, Pedi had only thrown 78 pitches by the fourth inning before being replaced by Kim Si-hoon in the fifth. He took the loss. 스포츠토토