KBO S zone expansion, was it just a shady ‘temporary prescription’?

The KBO League touched the strike zone (S zone) ahead of the 2022 season. Heo Woon, chairman of the Korea Baseball Organization (KBO) referee who attended the briefing session before the opening, said, “(If it is ambiguous), the majority of judges were judged with the ball. raised his voice. Chairman Heo emphasized the expansion of the S zone, saying, “The zone changes with the times. Normalization of abnormality.”

It was not wrong. In the baseball rules, the S zone is ‘the upper limit of the horizontal line between the upper part of the shoulder and the upper part of the pants of the uniform, and the lower limit of the lower part of the knee. and define However, in the actual game, the S zone was applied differently from the rules, so the pitchers had a hard time. This is why the S zone was pointed out as one of the backgrounds for the increase in walks in the league.

Unfortunately, in the 2021 KBO League, a walk feast took place. His walks per nine innings (BB/9) was 4.19 per game. It was the first time since 2009 that four or more BB/9s had been recorded in 12 years. Trends are more important than numbers. In 2021, 스포츠토토 7 out of 10 professional baseball teams had 4 or more BB/9s. The lowest ranked Hanwha Eagles came close to 5 with 4.81. As he went through the humiliation of a no-medal at the Tokyo Olympics held in July of that year, the voice of concern about the ‘hunting for the ninth’ grew louder. The KBO expected that the expansion of the S zone would lower the number of walks in the league and strengthen competitiveness in international competitions. In reality, KBO expands the S zone and “

There was a lot of talk on set about the expansion of the S zone. Outfielder Choo Shin-soo (SSG Landers) from the major leagues said, “Not only me, but many players and referees will have a hard time with the sudden change in the S zone.” After reviewing, the system is changed. It seems that the S zone that has been learned since childhood is changed too quickly overnight.” The S-zone expansion was a hot topic throughout the season. Because the decision is at the discretion of the referee, various complaints have erupted over this. One foreign pitcher wrote, “There doesn’t seem to be a clearly defined S zone. Some umpires catch the ball off the home plate as a strike, and some umpires don’t. It feels like playing with a different S zone every game.” spit out The hitter’s dissatisfaction was greater than the pitcher’s, and the BB/9 in the 2022 KBO League was 3.45, down 0.74 from the previous year.

In the first three matches of the first round of the WBC held this time, the national team allowed 15 pitches. Excluding the match against the Czech Republic (1), which is rated one number lower, the number of walks per game goes up significantly. In the match against Japan held on the 10th, he destroyed himself with 9 sand dunes. There were not one or two pitchers who were frustrated because they could not throw strikes. Although the number of walks was reduced by expanding the S zone, it was not a fundamental solution in the end. The players themselves proved that it was nothing more than a temporary prescription. 

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