When asked about the possibility of playing in the KBO league next year, Eric Peddy (30, NC Dinos), who dominated the KBO league this year, said, “Of course,” leaving all possibilities open. Except for the NC Dinos, it can be said that the remaining nine clubs may have to be nervous.
Pedi won five trophies, including MVP, at the 2023 Shinhan Bank SOL KBO Awards held at the Westin Chosun Seoul Grand Ballroom on the 27th.
Pedi has been at his best this season, starting in 30 games, going 20-6 with a 2.00 ERA. Pedi, who ranked first in both the ERA and multiple wins and strikeouts (209 strikeouts), recorded a history of achieving 20 wins and 200 strikeouts at the same time for the first time in 37 years since Sun Dong-yeol (Haetae) in 1986. Pedi was the first foreign player to achieve 20 wins and 200 strikeouts at the same time. Previously, pitchers Triple Crown had conquered only Sun Dong-yeol (1986, 1989, 1990, 1991), Ryu Hyun-jin (2006), and Yoon Seok-min (2011).
On this day, Pedi won five awards by winning the Triple Crown in the ERA, multiple wins, and strikeouts, as well as the Defensive Award and MVP in the pitcher category newly established this year. Pedi won 102 votes (91.9% of the vote) out of a total of 111 votes in the press corps, beating Noh Si-hwan (6 votes, Hanwha Eagles), Hong Chang-ki (2 votes, LG Twins), and Choi Jung (1 vote, SSG Landers) to win the MVP award. Pedi won the trophy and MVP prize of 10 million won. Pedi won a total of 21 million won in prize money by winning three pitchers and the defensive award and MVP on the same day.
It was the eighth time in the KBO league that a foreign player won the MVP of the regular season. Earlier, Tyrone Woods (1998) and Daniel Rios (2007, Doosan Bears), Eric Thames (2015, NC), Dustin Nippert (2016), Josh Lindblom (2019, Doosan), Mel Rojas Jr. (2020, KT Wiz), and Ariel Miranda (2021, Doosan) won MVP awards.
In the meantime, many foreign players returned to their home countries after the season and missed the awards ceremony. In response, he also delivered his acceptance speech through a video. At the awards ceremony, William Cuevas (KT), who won the winning percentage award, and Guillermo Eredia (SSG Landers), who won the defense award in the left field category, also expressed their feelings through video.
But Pedi was different. Pedi, who returned to the U.S. after completing his entire fall baseball schedule earlier, entered Korea with his father Scott Pedi on the 26th for the award ceremony. “I’m incredibly happy,” Peddy said after holding the microphone after winning the award. I want to thank the KBO league itself. Because I came to NC, I was able to receive the honor of the award. I was able to have a good season. My mother, father, younger brother, and girlfriend came all the way to Korea and helped me a lot. “My father was a great help to come to the awards ceremony,” he said.
“If it wasn’t for my teammates, I wouldn’t be here,” Pedi said. I want to say that we are brothers until the end. Finally, I want to give this honor to the city of Changwon. “Wherever I go, Changwon will remain the second hometown for me,” he stressed. Pedi also shed tears when his team was eliminated in Game 5 of the playoffs, the last game of the postseason. Regarding the reason for the tears at the time, Pedi said, “Now (the host who asked) makes me cry again,” adding, “At that time, emotions rose because the team was eliminated.” “I think I was emotional because all of my teammates on the team are brothers,” he explained.
In an interview with reporters after the ceremony, Pedi said, “When I heard about MVP, of course, I thought of my family first. “I didn’t know I would win the MVP award at the end of the KBO League, but I’m really honored to receive the award,” he said.
Pedi had to spend some time adapting when he entered the KBO league for the first time this season. It was the beginning of the year when he joined the spring camp in Tucson, Arizona. Recalling that time, Pedi said, “First of all, while playing baseball, I felt like an outsider for the first time. I had to adapt to a new environment, and there was also a barrier called language. But I made a big effort to make the team like me. And I’m really happy to finally have a brother-like colleague,” he said.
Pedi, who arrived in Korea on the 26th to participate in the awards ceremony, is scheduled to leave the country on the 28th. “I attended the ceremony with hope that I could ride the MVP,” Pedi said. Finally, I’m really happy to receive the MVP,” he said.
The biggest concern is Pedi’s future course of action. Because he performed so well in the KBO League, a team that wants him in the Major League can appear again. In addition, Japanese professional baseball, which has strong financial power, can also seek to recruit Pedi. Re-signing with the NC Dinos is also a card.
Regarding his future next season, Pedi said, “I think I still have to talk to the NC Dinos. I have a great agent. After that, you may be able to talk to other teams. I’m also excited about what will happen. Whatever decision you make, you will put your family first. I will make the best choice,” he stressed.
Asked if the possibility of negotiations with NC is open, Peddy then said vigorously, “Of course (Of course), yeah, yeah,” and then said, “Of course, I have to talk to the NC Dinos.” NC is really a superior team to me. NC will occupy a place in my heart,” he said sincerely.
At the award ceremony, the honor of the Rookie of the Year award went to Mun Dong-ju of Hanwha. The two talked briefly on the platform and shared their affection. Actually, the two are related. They had a meal together just one day before the three consecutive games between NC and Hanwha in Changwon on August 14. Pedi and Moon Dong-ju didn’t know each other personally at all, but the meeting took place when Moon Dong-ju conveyed his desire to meet Pedi. An NC official said at the time, “Moon Dong-ju asked Hanwha’s foreign scout (Jinyoung Kim) to meet with Pedi, and the meeting took place because he was close to Pedi’s agent.”
At the meal, Pedi was shown telling Moon Dong-ju about his slider and change-up grip, drawing attention. It was a heartwarming scene where I could feel Pedi’s sincere warm heart toward Korean players along with Moon Dong-ju’s passion to learn baseball. At the time, Pedi said, “Moon Dong-ju is a friend who has a strong will to learn baseball, so such a position was made. We talked a lot about baseball, and most of all, I was really surprised because (Moon Dong-ju) was so good at English. The agent was good at English, so I talked without an interpreter, but Moon Dong-ju was good at English, so there was no problem, he said. “I played baseball in the United States for 10 years and tried to share as much knowledge as possible.” He also asked questions about Major League Baseball, but overall, he asked a lot about pitching.
Regarding meeting Moon Dong-ju again at the awards ceremony, Pedi said, “We took pictures together on the podium, and it was meaningful to be together. He also whispered to Moon Dong-ju, “I wish you could hold the trophy (MVP) I’m holding now.” Then Moon Dong-ju said he would do his best. It was a meaningful day,” he said with a smile.
At the end of this season, Pedi also experienced ups and downs. Pedi was replaced after being hit in the right arm by KIA Ko Jong-wook’s hard hit after pitching a scoreless pitch until two outs in the sixth inning in the final regular season game on October 16. He unfortunately missed the ERA in the one-run range due to a lack of one out count. After focusing on recovery, he failed to play in the wild-card game and semi-playoff, and led the team to victory by pitching six innings with 12 strikeouts and one run in the first playoff against KT Wiz. Twelve were the most strikeouts in a single playoff game. However, after two consecutive wins, as NC lost three consecutive games, Pedi’s fall baseball also ended. And Pedi wept hot as he left the stadium.
On the meaning of the 2023 season, Peddy said, “It’s been an incredible season. Even in the middle of the season, he did what he thought he could do. “I don’t think there will be a season as great as this season,” he said with joy. Regarding the storage of the trophy, he said, “There is a separate room at home to collect special souvenirs. I’m going to display it proudly there. And every time I pass by him, I want to remember good memories,” he said.
“There are so many colleagues,” Peddy said of the colleague who helped him greatly. If I have to choose one, I think it’s Kim Si-hoon. When I first met him in Tucson, there was a barrier to language, but I tried a lot to learn English. We became friends while living together in Tucson. I will probably remain one of the best friends in my life until I die,” he said, expressing his gratitude.
Pedi said, “I’m honored to play a role in the KBO league in the 2023 season. He is also well aware that he has recorded 20 wins and 200 strikeouts in a single season in 37 years. “I’m really grateful to be able to stand shoulder to shoulder with the players who set such a milestone,” he said, adding, “Unfortunately, this will be the last time I see you in person this year.” Now we have to start training again. So, I hope to be able to share another moment of award next season,” he said, promising the next time. 토토사이트