KT Wiz officially announced on the afternoon of the 12th that it has renewed its contract with foreign player Wes Benjamin (30) for a total of 1.4 million U.S. dollars.

“In his third season, Benjamin played a key role in the starting lineup, recording 15 wins and six losses with a 3.54 ERA in 29 regular-season games, and displayed ace-level performance in the postseason as well,” KT said.

Benjamin wore the KT uniform as a substitute for ace William Cuevas, who left due to injury in May 2022. Benjamin’s annual salary was only 331,000 dollars at the time. When he joined the team, Benjamin gained attention due to his relationship with Yang Hyeon-jong, the ace player of the Kia Tigers. After moving to the Major League in the 2021 season, Yang joined the Texas Rangers while playing for the same team, and Lee Kang-chul asked his former student Yang Hyeon-jong for Benjamin’s information, helping him recruit him. “Hyun-jong (Yang) highly recommended Benjamin,” Lee said.

Benjamin complained of elbow pain after three scoreless innings against Gocheok Kiwoom on June 9, 2022, when he made his KBO league debut, but recovered his health 15 days later and pitched well with 5 wins and 4 losses and an ERA of 2.70 in 17 games. He made quality starts in 11 of the 17 games, and both WHIP (1.02) and hit percentage (.216) were worthy of foreigners. He was only a little unlucky, but he became a pitcher who could take responsibility for at least six innings with a quick adjustment to the league.

Benjamin displayed strength in big games as well. He pitched in a surprise relief pitcher in the first wild card game against KIA, displayed a strikeout show by KKK, and became the winning pitcher in the second game by pitching hard with nine strikeouts and no run in seven innings. Thanks to this, Benjamin renewed his contract with KT for 1.3 million U.S. dollars.

As recently as June this year, the prospects for Benjamin’s renewal seemed bleak. He assumed the role of ace in the team, but his frequent ups and downs added to manager Lee Kang-chul’s concern. Meanwhile, Cuevas returned as a substitute for Bosher, and Benjamin switched to become a second starting pitcher and regained the status of a special left-hander. After garnering four wins and a 1.67 ERA in four games in July, he continued strides and finished the season with 15 wins and six losses and a 3.54 ERA in 29 games. He ranked second in multiple wins, following Eric Peddy (20 wins) of the NC Dinosaurs who won the MVP award in the regular season. 토토

Benjamin is famous for his great personality as well as his skill. When he joined KT, he drew attention as a foreign player who eagerly studied the Korean language and culture, as part of Benjamin’s efforts to communicate and get to know his colleagues. As a result, he has a special team chemistry with his teammates on the ground and in club houses. He has such a gentle personality that Lee Kang-chul said, “Benjamin is too nice to be a problem.”

KT was the first among the 10 teams to complete the composition of foreign players for the 2024 season by extending its accompaniment with Benjamin. KT re-signed foreign hitter Mel Rojas Jr., who won the MVP of the 2020 season, for a total of $900,000 (about 1.1 billion won) on the 7th, and re-signed with foreign pitcher William Cuevas, who won the undefeated victory rate this season, for a total of $1.5 million (about 1.9 billion won).

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