Gwangju, the promised land…
Samsung’s veteran closer Oh Seung-hwan (41) will get his 400th career save this season. Oh pitched one inning of one-hit, two-strikeout ball against Hanwha on May 5 to earn his long-awaited 399th career save. He then pitched one inning of scoreless relief against KT on the 6th, striking out one,메이저사이트 but was not in a save situation.
Seung-hwan Oh has definitely declined over the last year or two. He’s had more ups and downs than in his prime, but there’s still no other closer in the league quite like him. In 57 games this season, he’s 4-5 with 29 saves and a 3.52 ERA. It’s not spectacular, but it’s not terrible either.
He’s been bumped from the closer’s role for a while, and even spent some time in the secondary, but at the end of the day, he’s the closer for Samsung. The Samsung bullpen is significantly weaker than in previous years, but the last resort is still Oh Seung-hwan. Even if you say ‘Seung-hwan Oh at any given time’, it doesn’t really count without him.
Seung-hwan Oh didn’t get a chance to pitch on August 8-9 in Gwangju. Samsung lost back-to-back games 1-2 and 1-3. Seung-hwan Oh was not inspired by Gwangju this time. In fact, if you look back at his timetable, he had a lot of fun in Gwangju.
His 50th career save (August 16, 2006), 100th career save (September 18, 2007), and 300th career save (April 25, 2021) all came in Gwangju. Of course, his 50th and 100th saves came in the unofficial stadium, not at KIA Champions Field. Still, it would have been unforgettable if he had achieved his 300th and 400th saves at Champions Field. He didn’t have much left in his career.
Samsung now has just three games left in the season. Immediately after the game against KIA, they traveled to Seoul. On the 10th, they will play against Gochuk Kiwoom. After three days off, they will play Daegu SSG on the 14th and Changwon NC on the 15th to close out the 2023 season. This means that Oh Seung-hwan will not be able to reach 400 saves this year unless he adds more saves in the remaining three games.
Oh Seung-hwan is 41 years old. He is known to have a strong commitment to staying active. If that’s the case, he could reach 400 saves as early as the 2024 season. However, Samsung fans will want to see him reach 400 saves as soon as possible, preferably in the final home game on April 14.
By the way, Oh is the KBO’s all-time leader in career saves. 1st place for all active and retired players. He has a comfortable lead over second-place KIA Futures manager Son Seung-rak (271 saves). In addition, he has 521 career saves in Korea and Japan (80 saves in Japan and 42 saves in the major leagues). He leads Lim Chang-yong (258 saves in Korea, 128 saves in Japan) with 386 career saves.