The Korea Herald


Cuban veteran to duel homegrown pitcher to begin KBO postseason series

By Yonhap

Published : Oct. 21, 2023 - 10:55

    • Link copied

(Yonhap) (Yonhap)

A veteran left-hander from Cuba will be up against a homegrown right-hander to begin a South Korean baseball postseason series on Sunday.

The SSG Landers, defending Korean Series champions, announced Saturday that Roenis Elias will start Game 1 of their first round Korea Baseball Organization (KBO) playoff series against the NC Dinos.

The Dinos will counter with right-hander Shin Min-hyeok.

The first pitch is 2 p.m. Sunday at Incheon SSG Landers Field in the western city of Incheon.

As the No. 3 seed, the Landers will have the home field advantage over the fourth-seed Dinos in this best-of-five series.

Elias, who joined the Landers in May, went 8-6 with a 3.70 ERA in 22 regular season starts, but the 35-year-old struggled against the Dinos, with a 7.53 ERA across three outings. It was the worst ERA Elias had against any opponent this year.

He pitched well in his final regular season start on Monday, holding the Doosan Bears to a run on four hits in seven innings.

Shin, 24, will be making his first career postseason appearance. He split his time between the rotation and the bullpen in the regular season, going 5-5 with a 3.98 ERA.

He had trouble against the Landers, pitching to a 6.57 ERA in four appearances.

Like Elias, though, Shin finished the regular season on a strong note. He threw five shutout innings against the Kia Tigers on Tuesday.

By sending Elias and Shin to the mound Sunday, both clubs are saving their best starters for Monday's Game 2.

For the Dinos, it's Erick Fedde, who became the first foreign pitcher to win the Triple Crown in league history by leading the KBO with 20 wins, 209 strikeouts and a 2.00 ERA.

Fedde was struck in the right forearm by a batted ball in his most recent outing on Monday, but the Dinos said he has been making progress and should be able to pitch in this series.

The Landers have decided to give left-hander Kim Kwang-hyun an extra day of rest, after the 35-year-old last pitched on Tuesday. Kim has a wealth of postseason experience, having won five championship rings with the Landers franchise. (Yonhap)