Blister controversy, national team exclusion…Lee suddenly has an 80-ball challenge

September 24, 2023 | by

KIA Tigers left-hander Lee Yi-ri, 21, was given the task of throwing 80 pitches.

Lee was dropped from the Hangzhou Asian Games squad. He had been selected for three consecutive international tournaments since joining the team: Tokyo 2020 and the 2023 WBC, followed by Hangzhou. His importance to the team and expectations were high. However, his exclusion was announced on August 22, just one day before the national team was to convene.

After pitching a six-inning, one-run shutout in Kiwoom Jeongne on Aug. 10 to win 10 games, he suffered from shoulder pain and blisters and calluses on his fingers. He was scratched from the roster twice. In four games, he didn’t make it past the fifth inning. He made his comeback against Hanwha in Daejeon on April 21, but didn’t last more than two innings.

Manager Ryu Jung-il was disappointed and decided to replace Lee. “I saw the blister before the game, he couldn’t throw less than two innings, and then I saw the blister afterward,” he said, “He’s the main player who should be in charge of the Taiwan-Japan game. I was wondering if he could throw 70-80 pitches as a starter with this blister. We realized that he couldn’t throw more than 80 pitches, so we decided to replace him.” 토토사이트

Coach Ryu Jung-il has been checking and observing the objections through the national team trainer. As the head of the national team who needs to build the best team possible, this decision was made after much thought. After losing two of the national team’s ace pitchers in NC Koo Chang-mo and Lee Yi-ri, Ryu is the one who is most upset.

Lee Yi-ri, who is out of the national team, will be pitching for KIA in the starting rotation to compete for the top five. “He will pitch in the doubleheader against NC in Changwon on the 27th,” Kim Jong-guk announced. Since he pitched on the 21st, he will be on the mound every five days. The blisters on his fingers are not a problem, so he will start. No manager would pitch a sick player.

For Lee, the game against the Changwon NC on the 27th was a chance to prove himself. His sudden departure from the national team will not be easy for him. With the controversy surrounding his exclusion from the national team, he had to pitch under extra pressure. All eyes will be on Lee as he throws 80 pitches in Changwon to prove his fitness.


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