The KBO announced the list of players eligible for free agency in 2024 on Friday. There are a total of 34 players eligible for free agency in 2024. By FA classification, there are 8 players in Class A, 14 players in Class B, and 12 players in Class C. Of the 34 players, 12 are first-time free agents, eight are re-qualified, and 14 are players who already qualified for free agency but did not apply for FA approval and remained eligible. Oh Seung-hwan (Samsung), who became the first KBO player to record 400 career saves, is categorized as a Class C player.
After graduating from Kyungpook National University and Dankook University, Oh began his professional career in 2005 in a Samsung jersey, and in his third year in 2007, he reached 100 saves in the fewest games and shortest season, and in 2009 and 2011, he broke the fewest games and youngest season records, reaching 150 and 200 saves, respectively. The 200 saves in 334 games was a new world record for the fewest games.
Oh also became the first KBO pitcher to record 250, 300, 350, and 400 saves, creating an unrivaled record for saves. Despite being away from the KBO for six years, from 2014 to 2019, Oh accumulated saves at an incredible pace. In June, he reached the 500-save mark in Korea, the United States, and Japan.
Seung-hwan Oh has accumulated enough saves to win the division title six times, the most in history. In 2021, 바카라사이트 Oh became the oldest player in KBO history to record 40 saves in a season, as well as recording 20 or more saves nine times.
This season, he was criticized as a “bust” and even talked about retiring. Seung-hwan Oh wasn’t going anywhere.
After finishing the first half of the season with a 2-3 record with 10 saves and two shutouts (4.80 ERA), Oh regained his composure in the second half, going 2-2 with 20 saves and two shutouts (2.20 ERA) to preserve the team’s victory. Oh became the first KBO pitcher to record his 400th career save with 1⅓ scoreless innings in the final home game against SSG on March 14.
Seung-hwan Oh, who is eligible for free agency after this season, expressed his desire to stay with the club. The negotiating table was opened for discussion. Seung-hwan Oh is an integral part of Samsung. While he’s not quite at his peak, there’s no one else who can guard the back door. In fact, this season, the team tried left-hander Lee Seung-hyun as a fireman, but it didn’t work out.
“It was a great experience for me,” said Lee, who never thought he would be pitching behind Seung-hwan Oh, whom he has admired since childhood. Who would have thought that I would be pitching behind Seung-hwan. It was a great honor.” “I wanted to do well because he gave me a great opportunity, but it’s not for everyone. Every time I pitched, I felt that Seung-hwan was really great,” he said.
Samsung, which has struggled to manage its bullpen this season due to loose pitching, is reportedly planning to sign a bullpen staff in the free agent market. Aside from outside transfusions, Oh Seung-hwan is a must-have. He is a key resource for the first team, as he has shown that his skills are still not rusty, having recorded 30 saves for three consecutive years since 2021. The “Living Legend” is a true leader in the locker room who can inspire not only the pitching staff but the entire team.
With a gradual generational shift, veterans like Oh need to give the younger players time to develop.
This means that the future of Samsung’s mound, including Kim Yoon-soo, Yang Chang-seop, and Lee Jae-hee, will need Seung-hwan until Young-gun returns from military service and settles into the first team. A two-year contract would be more appropriate than a one-year deal.
All of Samsung’s previous permanent signees, including Lee Man-soo (22), Yang Joon-hyuk (10), and Lee Seung-yeop (36), were hitters. Seung-hwan Oh deserves to be the first pitcher to receive the number. Not to mention his individual achievements, he played a crucial role in the team’s five Korean Series titles in 2005, 2006, 2011, 2012, and 2013. If Oh doesn’t get his number, it’s safe to say that none of Samsung’s pitchers will get it in the future.
Both sides will need to be considerate and make concessions to reach an amicable agreement at the negotiating table. Oh Seung-hwan should realize that it’s not easy to get paid as much as he made this season (1.8 billion won), and the club shouldn’t devalue his value because of his age.