The left-handed ace who unleashed the Doosan Bears’ championship run is saying goodbye to the mound he’s called home for 20 years.
Jang Won-jun recently announced his intention to retire from active play to the Doosan Baseball Organization. A left-handed pitcher from Busan High School, Jang was drafted by the Lotte Giants in the first round of the 2004 rookie draft and signed with Doosan as a free agent prior to the 2015 season. In his first year with the organization, Jang went 12-12 with a 4.08 ERA in 30 games, establishing himself as the first “V4” pitcher in 14 years. The following year, in 2016, he went 15-6 with a 3.32 ERA in 27 games, leading the Fantastic Four to the title.
In nine years in a Doosan uniform, Jang compiled a 47-42 record with one save and 12 holds in 188 games with a 4.49 ERA. This year, he became the 11th left-hander in KBO history and the oldest in the league with 130 wins (37 years, 9 months, 22 days) and the ninth in history to reach 2,000 innings pitched, impressing fans with his ‘romantic baseball’.
Jang Won-jun said, “The choice to leave Jeongden Grounds was never easy. However, I made this decision because I thought it was time to stop playing baseball,” said Jang. “I am grateful to owner Park Jung-won for letting me start my second baseball life as a free agent and giving me more opportunities when I was struggling with injuries.”안전놀이터
He continued, “I’m glad that I was able to fulfill the last goals I set for myself. However, when I think of my juniors, my steps don’t slow down,” he said. “There are many talented juniors in our team, so I will support them to train diligently and lead the team to a leap forward.”
“I remember the faces of coach Lee Seung-yup, the coaching staff, and my teammates. It was all thanks to ‘Team Bears’ that I was able to leave with applause at the end.” “I will never forget the cheers of the fans who gave me tremendous strength that I lacked. I am so grateful.”