Just like the players, the referees started the game. Just as players prepare for the season through spring camps from February to early March, referees visit each club’s camp to enhance the sense of the game. In order to maintain continuity with the top of the strike zone, which was promoted from last year, we plan to judge many balls from behind the catcher.
The starting point is LG Spring Camp, which is being held at the Giants Complex in Scottsdale, Arizona, USA. The team, led by referee Lee Min-ho, visited the LG spring camp on the 12th (Korean time) and judged strikes and balls in bullpen pitching.
Last year, the space at the top of the strike zone was wide for fastballs, but this year, standards were set for curveballs with large angles. It rises high from the start and is stingy with curves that enter the top of the strike zone, but strike calls when it enters the middle or below the strike zone. Referee Lee Min-ho stepped into the at-bat and explained in detail the decision on the breaking ball.
Referee Lee Min-ho, who arrived in Arizona the day before, said, “In this camp, all referees are aiming to see 6,000 balls. Before coming to the camp site, I trained to judge the machine ball in Icheon, but the machine ball and the ball thrown by a person are different. Starting today, we will judge the ball thrown by the pitcher at camp.” 바카라사이트
He continued, “Since last year, it has been said that the upper part of the strike zone will be judged more generously. This year, we are trying to judge by looking at the high change structure more carefully,” he said. The coaches said, ‘It’s okay to hold the fastball at this height. However, there are cases where the breaking ball is held high from the batter’s point of view.” As far as we can see, a strike should be a ball that the batter can hit. So we set a standard and started training on this standard.”
As for the reason for using 6,000 as the baseline, “umpires usually judge 6,000 balls during the season. If so, it is necessary to train while watching 6,000 balls in advance during the camp,” he said. I am the team leader, but I am training with the position that I compete equally with my juniors,” he explained.
The referees plan to find all the places where the KBO League clubs are located. They are dispatched to Australia with Doosan, Guam with Lotte, and Okinawa with Samsung to participate in bullpen pitching, live pitching, or evaluation matches. Currently, in addition to LG, Kiwoom, Hanwha, KT NC, and KIA are training in Arizona, and the national team will be convened on the 15th. The referees will also participate in the national team’s training and matches. The first real game of the national team is the NC game on the 17th.
Referee Lee Min-ho said, “I plan to go out wherever there is a real fight. As the speedup in the upcoming season is also important, we will strictly look at whether the pitcher increases the pitching time by 12 seconds when there is no runner. We will work hard to adapt well to each other while communicating with the field in every part of the camp.”
The Korea Baseball Organization (KBO) has set an average game time of 3 hours and 5 minutes for the 2023 season. Based on 9 innings in the 2021 season, an average of 3 hours and 14 minutes per game, and an average of 3 hours and 11 minutes per game based on 9 innings in the 2022 season.