Kim Byung-hyun (44), a former special closer for the Arizona Diamondbacks, visited Dodger Stadium on the 12th.
He visited the stadium to produce a promotional material for the 2024 Korean season opening game between San Diego Padres and LA Dodgers, prepared by Korea MLB.com. We will stay until the 14th to produce interviews with Dodgers and Padres players. Of course, Padres’ Kim Ha-seong is also included.
The reporter has known Kim Byung-hyun and his father for 24 years since he covered them through his agent Jeon Young-jae (the late) when he made his major league debut in 1999.
Through this meeting, I talked about various things with Kim Byung-hyun and the producers who accompanied him. When asked about how he transformed into an entertainer despite not being media-friendly during his active career, and about his outstanding business acumen, Kim Byung-hyun laughed and said, “I can’t even talk about it even now.”
Byung-Hyun Kim signed an amateur free agent contract with the Arizona Diamondbacks in 1999. He appeared in 22 games in the minor leagues in 1999 before being promoted to the big leagues. Kim Byung-hyun recalled, “I experienced 1 month of Double A and 1 month of Triple A and moved up immediately.”
It was unconventional because he was not from the KBO league and had signed an amateur free agent contract. There is a reason. This is because minor league hitters were unable to properly attack Byung-Hyun Kim’s balls. In short, it was an unhittable performance. The batters were helpless as the underhand throw was peppered with a 155km fastball. The club decided to promote Kim Byung-hyun to the big league because there was no reason for him to remain in the minor league anymore.
What I personally regretted while covering him in the U.S. was why he insisted on being selected. The reporter said to Kim Byeong-hyun, “If he had remained as a closer or bullpen pitcher, he would have continued his pitching career for a long time and left many records…”
Byung-Hyun Kim is the only Korean pitcher to write an ‘Immaculate inning.’ An immaculate inning is striking out 3 batters with 9 strikes. This is a record set 114 times by 104 pitchers in MLB history.
Kim Byung-hyun explained the reason why he insisted on being a starting pitcher in the bullpen: “Currently, the importance of the bullpen is highlighted, and the pitchers who take charge of the 7th to 9th innings are very important. But at the time, I thought it was natural to select a good pitcher,” he said of the situation at the time.먹튀검증
After transferring to the Colorado Rockies in 2005, Byung-Hyun Kim began his career as a starting pitcher. He played in a total of 394 games over 9 years in MLB, starting 87 of them. He is not eligible for a pension fully paid by the Major League. This is because he did not complete 10 years full-time.
Kim Byung-hyun is a reliever who could have had a long run in MLB if he had not insisted on starting.