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Groin doesn’t bother Cards’ Kwang Hyun Kim in 2 shutout innings

UPDATED: Thu., March 5, 2020

St. Louis Cardinals pitcher Kwang-Hyun Kim throws during the first inning of a spring training baseball game against the Miami Marlins Wednesday, Feb. 26, 2020, in Jupiter, Fla. (Jeff Roberson / Associated Press)
St. Louis Cardinals pitcher Kwang-Hyun Kim throws during the first inning of a spring training baseball game against the Miami Marlins Wednesday, Feb. 26, 2020, in Jupiter, Fla. (Jeff Roberson / Associated Press)
By Chuck King Associated Press

JUPITER, Fla. – Kwang Hyun Kim showed no signs of the groin tightness that kept him from making his previously scheduled start, pitching two shutout innings for the St. Louis Cardinals against the New York Mets on Thursday.

After Adam Wainwright gave up five runs and eight hits in four innings, Kim extended his spring training scoreless streak this year to five innings. He allowed his first three hits.

“I’m pretty satisfied with the results and my groin is 100% right now,” Kim said through a translator.

With runners on second and third in the sixth, Kim escaped the threat by inducing a comebacker from Robinson Cano.

“I really appreciate how he just continued to compete and execute and bear down,” St. Louis manager Mike Shildt said. “It’s a really, really positive sign. He’s clearly got multiple pitches to be effective and I thought he had a nice day.”

Kim had been scheduled to start three days earlier, but due to the groin threw a bullpen session instead.

He’s next scheduled to take the mound on Monday in Fort Myers against Minnesota, where he’s likely to start. Shildt said Kim is a little behind the program of the other starters, but not by much.

“He’ll get out there in four days, so he’ll be able to come back sooner, and then he’ll be able to go a little bit longer,” Shildt said.

Kim went 17-6 with a 2.51 ERA as a starter last season for the SK Wyverns and was selected best pitcher in South Korea. St. Louis signed him to an $8 million, two-year contract.

The Cardinals have not said whether the lefty will begin the season as a starter or in the bullpen.

With the Cardinals off on Friday, Kim is looking forward to getting a haircut, then getting on a boat.

“I hope I can catch a big fish,” Kim said. “If I do, I will take a photo and then show you later.”

Wainwright didn’t strike out a batter.

“I’m missing the last little bit of life – the jump on the heater, and the last little bit of sink on the sinker, the last little bit of slide on the slider, the last little bit of drop on the curveball,” Wainwright said. “I had two strikes a lot, couldn’t put anybody away.”

New York No. 9 hitter Johneshwy Fargas completed a cycle with an eighth-inning home run off John Brebbia. The 25-year-old Fargas has not played above the Double-A level.

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