KT was completely defeated 5-9 in the first PO game against NC in the ‘2023 Shinhan Bank SOL KBO Postseason’ held at KT Wiz Park in Suwon on the 30th.
The loss was due to NC’s foreign ace Eric Peddy’s brilliant pitching of allowing one run and 12 strikeouts in six innings, which returned from a bruised right forearm, but the veterans’ silence and fatal mistakes to make in the big game were regrettable.
Coach Lee Kang-chul, who believed in the veteran’s experience, put Kim Sang-soo as the leadoff in the first round. Kim Min-hyuk and Cho Yong-ho, who mainly played first during the season, were assigned as top hitters, but Kim Sang-soo, not Cho Yong-ho.
However, Kim Sang-soo remained silent in the first game with no hits in four at-bats and one strikeout. In particular, in the eighth inning with no outs and first base, he got a chance to hit once again after avoiding a check swing decision crisis after a two-strike, but he stepped down with a double play and poured cold water on kt’s willingness to chase.
Hwang Jae-kyun, who played as the second batter and became a table setter with Kim Sang-soo, also left a regret as he never succeeded in getting on base with no hits and two strikeouts in four at-bats.
In the case of Hwang Jae-kyun, unlike a veteran, he bowed his head, making a fatal mistake in defense.
In the third inning, when kt was dragged 0-2, NC leadoff hitter Park Min-woo hit a normal infield fly toward the third baseman, but Hwang Jae-kyun made a catch error and allowed to get on base.
Soon after, a sharp hit by Park Gun-woo passed through Hwang Jae-kyun’s defense and led to an RBI double, widening the gap for NC. Even Park Gun-woo, who settled on second base, stepped home when Kwon Hee-dong hit a timely hit, completely controlling the early flow.
KT, which was being dragged, seemed to change the atmosphere as Moon Sang-chul, the leadoff hitter in the bottom of the third inning, launched a solo shot of pursuit against Pedi. Since then, Bae Jung-dae has had a great opportunity to shake Pedi as he got on base with an infield hit, but veteran hitters have been silent, with Park Kyung-soo striking out, Kim Sang-soo striking out an infield grounder and Hwang Jae-kyun striking out.
In addition, veteran Park Byung-ho, who played as the fourth batter, failed to meet expectations with one hit in four at-bats. He struck out in all three of his first at-bats. He got on base with a double in the last at-bat of the ninth inning when the game was over and scored in Bae Jung-dae’s grand slam, but his early performance was somewhat disappointing.