Friday, May 03, 2002

BK IS BACK: Remember Byung-Hyun Kim? The guy who gave up two game-costing homeruns in the World Series last year. He's still a Diamondback, and apparently doing fine:

"As far as I can tell, he's fine," manager Bob Brenly said. "I haven't been given any reason to believe he's been affected by this. Obviously, it might have been different if we'd lost, but I guess we'll never know that, will we?"

So far, Kim looks more than fine. Not only does he appear unaffected by his World Series misfortune, he seems energized by it. In his first 10 appearances, he has five saves, a 0.84 ERA and a remarkable 20 strikeouts in 10 2/3 innings. That's 20 strikeouts out of 32 outs, territory usually reserved for his teammates Randy Johnson and Curt Schilling.

When it was mentioned to Brenly that it's a good bet Kim has never even heard the tragic tale of Donnie Moore, Brenly's voice acquired an edge that could slice rock. "No, he doesn't," he said. "And you know what? He doesn't need to know, either."

Moore, by the way, gave up a game-winner in the 1986 ALCS, preventing the Angels from getting into the World Series. And he floundered around after that and killed himself and tried to kill his wife in 1989. Moore was about 32 when he gave up that homer; Kim was 22 --so maybe his youth is healing the psychic wounds.

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