The KIA Tigers traveled to Suwon in high spirits with back-to-back wins over the defending champions SSG Landers.
KIA won two straight games against SSG in the 2023 Shinhan Bank SOL KBO League at SSG Landers Field in Incheon on May 5 and 6, moving the team from ninth to eighth in the standings.
Catcher Kim Tae-gun, who was traded to the team ahead of the game on the 5th, also contributed not only in terms of results but also in terms of content, as he hit for the second consecutive day. This helped revitalize the team’s sagging mood. However, the team’s 7-1 lead in the sixth game was short-lived as they gave up five runs in the bottom of the eighth inning.
“The players and coaching staff were tired, but we are a little less tired because we won,” said Kia head coach Kim Jong-guk before the 7th game against the Suwon KT Wiz. “The batters scored a lot of runs early on, and we were missing Park Sung-ho and Choi Jung. It was much better for the pitchers that the batters scored a lot of runs because their overall condition improved.”
As much attention as the game was paid to the game, it was also paid to Kim Jong-kook himself on the mound. With the bases loaded in the bottom of the eighth inning with KIA leading 7-4, Kim called out not only the Choi Ji-min-Kim Tae-gun battery but also the infielders for a brief chat. However, Choi had to hand the mound over to Jang Hyun-sik at second and third after Han Yoo-seom gave up a double to Guillermo Heredia.
“I think Choi Ji-min was a little more nervous because he didn’t have much experience, and I just told Kim Kyu-sung and the infielders to calm down. I didn’t order anything in particular,” said Kim Jong-kook, explaining the situation, “It was just for the players to calm down, and I thought the infielders as well as the pitcher should be more prepared.”
Choi Ji-min was unable to get out of the inning, but Jang Hyun-sik, who came on afterward, pitched 1⅓ scoreless innings to preserve the lead. “Jang Hyun-sik did a good job in a tight situation, and Jeon Sang-hyun made a mistake in the infield, otherwise he would have finished cleanly,” Kim Jong-kook said, encouraging his bullpen. After the back-to-back games, Jang Hyun-sik will get a day of rest, while the rest of the pitching staff will be available as usual.
The KIA lineup for the three-game series against KT is Choi Won-jun (center field), Kim Do-young (third base), Na Sung-beom (right field), Choi Hyung-woo (designated hitter), Hwang Dae-in (first base), Socrates Brito (left field), Kim Tae-gun (catcher), Kim Kyu-sung (second base), and Park Chan-ho (shortstop). The starting pitcher is Kim Gun-guk.메이저사이트
Kim, who pitched 2⅔ innings against the LG Twins in Jamsil on April 1, giving up two runs on two hits and two walks with one strikeout, will take the mound. “He did well last time, but I’m hoping he’ll go at least two more innings this time,” said Kim Jong-gook.