The celebration is over, the glory is in the air… Three first-time title winners, only two batters, and a third pitcher, Pedi Chungha.
The 2023 KBO League has come to a close.
Following the LG Twins’ regular-season title, five teams – KT Wiz, SSG Landers, NC Dinos, and Doosan Bears – advanced to fall baseball.
There was also a reigning titleholder.
Many new faces across the lineup.
The batting title race was fierce all year long. The eventual winner was NC Son Ah-seop. He beat out Samsung’s Koo Ja-uk (0.336) with a .333 average. Overcoming the shock of a poor first season with NC, he went 3-for-4 with an incisors injury to claim the title for the first time in his career. He also won the fourth most hits in his debut (187).
Hanwha’s “Young Guns” Noh Si-hwan became the first player to reach the 30-homer, 100-RBI plateau with 31 home runs and 101 RBIs. SSG’s Choi Jung-jeong came within two with 29 homers while competing in the Asian Games, but a hamstring strain ended his season on March 13. He tried to win a third title with a 5-for-4 slugging percentage, but fell behind Choi (.548) in the final stretch.
Doosan’s Jung Soo-bin led the league in stolen bases in his 15th season with 39. LG Cinderella Shin Min-jae (37 stolen bases) overtook him in the final innings.
LG’s “RBI machine” Hong Chang-ki became the top run scorer for the first time in his career with 109 runs. He also won the second prize for returning to the top of the batting average (0.444) after a two-year absence.
The pitching staff is also full of new faces.
NC newcomer Eric Peddie had a breakout season.
Pedi led the league with a 20-6 record, 2.00 ERA, and 209 strikeouts in 180⅓ innings pitched in 30 games this season.
He led the league in wins, ERA, and strikeouts. He also became only the fifth pitcher in history to reach the 20-win, 200-strikeout plateau in 37 years, 먹튀검증 since Seon Dong-yeol in 1986. Only three batters won two awards. He is one of the favorites for the season MVP.
SSG’s Seo Jin-yong, the KBO’s first-ever 30-save Noblon, became the first player in 13 years to reach the 40-save mark with 42 saves, one of only five players in history to do so. He surpassed Ha Jae-hoon (36 saves) in 2019 to become the team’s all-time leader in saves.
KT’s second-year “Enfant Terrible” Park Young-hyun, who has surged this season, realized his dream of becoming the first ever hold king with 32 holds despite missing the Asian Games. Second place went to SSG veteran Noh Kyung-eun (30 holds).
KT’s returning ace, William Cuevas, earned his first win percentage title with a 100% winning percentage in 18 games with 12 wins, 12 draws and a 2.60 ERA.