가을야구 향한 ‘의지’…NC, KIA와 다시 0.5경기 차이

장군 멍군. 한 차례씩 주고받았다. 다시 격차는 0.5경기다.

엔씨(NC) 다이노스는 23일 경남 창원엔씨파크에서 열린 2022 KBO리그 기아(KIA) 타이거즈와 운명의 3연전 두 번째 경기에서 5-2 승리를 따냈다. 이날 승리로 6위 엔씨는 5위 기아를 다시 0.5 경기 차이로 바짝 따라붙었다. 가을야구 마지막 티켓을 두고 벌어지는 경쟁이 다시 뜨거워졌다.

이날 엔씨는 선취점을 가져오며 좋은 출발을 했다. 1회말 선두타자로 나선 박민우가 리드오프 홈런을 터뜨리며 1-0으로 주도권을 가져왔다. 이후 3회초 기아 김선빈이 타점을 내며 1-1 균형을 맞췄지만, 엔씨는 3회말 1사 1, 3루 기회에서 박건우가 적시타를 터뜨리며 다시 2-1로 앞서갔다.

치열하게 펼쳐지던 경기는 점점 엔씨 쪽으로 기울었다. 4회 1사 1, 2루 기회에서 박민우가 적시타를 때리며 1점을 추가했고, 5회말 1사 1, 3루 상황에서는 서호철이 땅볼을 친 틈을 타 3루 주자가 또 한 번 득점을 내며 4-1까지 밀고 갔다. 이후 기아는 6회초 1점을 내며 추격 불씨를 살리려 했지만, 엔씨가 8회말 5-2로 격차를 벌렸다. 결국 이 차이는 좁혀지지 않았다.

이날 엔씨는 선발투수 드류 루친스키가 48일 만에 승리를 따내며 설욕에 앞장섰다. 루친스키는 이날 6이닝 6피안타 3볼넷 4탈삼진 2실점(2자책)을 기록하며 9승(11패)째를 챙겼다. 개인적으로는 4연패를 끊는 중요한 승리이기도 했다.

반면 전날 경기에서 양현종을 앞세워 9연패를 끊어냈던 기아는 다시 한 번 패배 쓴맛을 봤다. 두 팀의 외나무다리 경기는 24일 창원에서 이어진다.

 

 

최지만, 양키스 상대 시즌 4호 홈런

탬파베이 레이스 최지만(31)이 시즌 4호 홈런을 터뜨렸다.

최지만은 30일(한국시각) 미국 플로리다주 세인트피터즈버그 트로피카나필드에서 열린 2022 메이저리그(MLB) 뉴욕 양키스와 안방 경기에 4번 지명타자로 출전해 팀이 0-1로 뒤지던 2회말 첫 타석에서 동점 홈런을 뿜어냈다. 상대 선발 우완 루이스 세베리노의 4구째 시속 95.7마일(154㎞)의 포심패스트볼을 공략해 타구를 왼쪽 담장으로 넘겼다. 지난 25일 마이애미 말린스와 경기 이후 4경기 만의 홈런. 최지만은 7회말 무사 1루에서는 세베리노로부터 볼넷을 얻고 출루한 뒤 홈을 밟기도 했다. 3타수 1안타 1볼넷 1타점 2득점. 시즌 타율은 0.260(종전 0.258)으로 살짝 올랐다. OPS(출루율+장타율)는 0.832.

탬파베이는 이날 겨우 2안타만 쳐냈는데 모두 솔로 홈런이었다. 홈런 외에 사사구 5개를 얻어내 동부지구 1위 양키스에 4-2, 승리를 거뒀다.

 

The strongest shield – the strongest spear is back… Goo Chang-mo and Kang Baek-ho’s comeback countdown

NC (NC) Dinos and Katie (KT) Wiz, who won the combined championship in the 2020 and 2021 seasons, respectively. The glory days were short, and the two clubs are hovering in the top 8-10 in the 2022 season. However, a rescue force is coming, who will be the driving force for the rebound. They are Gu Chang-mo (25, NC) and Kang Baek-ho (23, KT). They were the main players in the team’s first unified championship, but start the 2022 season late due to injury.

 

Gu Chang-mo is expected to be registered in the first-team entry this weekend as early as possible. He disappeared from the first team after appearing in Game 6 of the Korean Series in the 2020 season. Changmo Koo stood as the best left-hander in the KBO league with a record of 9 wins and an undefeated ERA of 1.74 in 2020, but took the entire 2021 season off due to a stress fracture in his left forearm (between the elbow and wrist). He was expected to be together from the start this year, but suffered a hamstring injury during spring camp and had to spend time in rehabilitation again.

 

In the Futures League, they had a warm-up time. He showed good pitching content against Sangmu on the 11th (2 innings, 2 hits, 1 strikeout and 1 run), against Kia on the 17th (3 innings, 2 hits, 3 strikeouts), and on the 22nd against Samsung (4⅔ innings, 2 hits, 5 strikeouts and 1 run) . His top speed was set at 148 km/h. NC acting coach Kang In-kwon said, “I plan to schedule a later date after pitching the bullpen on the 26th and seeing the condition.” Since he has already increased the number of pitches to 68 in the second team, he is expected to start against Doosan at the earliest this weekend. In NC, Song Myung-ki was moved to the second team, and there is currently a shortage of starting pitchers.

 

Kang Baek-ho, who helped Katie win the championship last year, is expected to return in early June. Kang Baek-ho fell off the stairs at the end of March, just before the opening ceremony, and suffered a fractured right little toe. He was initially expected to have a hiatus of about a month, but as a result of the re-examination, he was diagnosed that it would take three to four months to recover. Fortunately, the recovery speed is fast, and it is known that he will be able to join the first team in early June. Kang Baek-ho helped the team to top the KBO league with a batting average of 0.347 and 16 home runs and 102 RBIs, including over 40,000 batting average until the first half of last year.

 

In addition to Kang Baek-ho, foreign batter Henry Ramos (30) has been out for more than a month with a toe injury. However, Park Byeong-ho (36), who has awakened his home run instinct, is barely holding on to the other line, but it is not enough. Ramos is also expected to return to the first team with Kang Baek-ho. This is why director Lee Kang-cheol emphasized until recently, “You only have to endure until May.”

Shim Jae-hak, commentator of MBC Sports Plus, said, “It will be of great help to NC if Goo Chang-mo fills the starting rotation with a healthy figure in a situation where Song Myeong-ki, Parsons, and Lee Yong-chan are missing.” Regarding Kang Baek-ho, he said, “Katy has been showing a different side from last year, but when Kang Baek-ho returns, the weight of the other ship will change and he will have the strength to run in the future.”

 

‘1703’… Hyunjong Yang sets record for most strikeouts in Kia Tigers history

The returning Ace wrote a new history once again.

Yang Hyun-jong (34) of the Kia Tigers started out in a home match against the Samsung Lions of the 2022 KBO League held at Kia Champions Field in Gwangju on the 1st and struck out Kang Min-ho in the second inning, striking out his 1703th career. It is the record for most strikeouts in Kia club history. The previous record was 1702, held by Lee Kang-cheol, KT (KT) Wiz.

With this, Yang Hyun-jong recorded the second most strikeouts in Korean professional baseball history after former Hanwha Eagles coach Song Jin-woo (2,048). Yang Hyun-jong previously recorded 1,700 strikeouts in the match against Katie in Suwon on the 26th of last month, surpassing former manager Seon Dong-yeol (1698).

In the match against the Lotte Giants held in Gwangju on the 14th of last month, Yang Hyun-jong set the record for 2000 innings, the 7th and youngest (34 years, 1 month, 13 days) in KBO league history.

 

Meet Lee Jung-hoo, Koo Ja-wook, and Hong Chang-gi in Metaverse

Fan meetings with popular professional baseball stars will be held in virtual reality.

The Korea Baseball Organization (KBO) announced on the 26th that it will hold a metaverse fan meeting where players and fans can communicate. The participating players are Ja-wook Koo (Samsung Lions), Chang-gi Hong (LG Twins), and Jeong-hoo Lee (Kiwoom Heroes).

Kbio said, “Players participate in real-time Q&A, quiz events, and avatar participation-type events, and fans who join can receive various prizes such as autographs, mobile gift certificates, and MyShinhan Points.”

You can participate in the event through ‘Shinhan Sol Baseball Park’, a metaverse baseball field in the Shinhan Sol (SOL) application.

 

쿠에바스의 100구, KT에 역사적 첫 승 안겼다

야구 역사를 만든 팀들의 첫 대결. 승자는 ‘마법사들’이었다.

정규리그 1위 케이티(KT) 위즈는 14일 고척스카이돔(고척돔)에서 열린 2021 KBO리그 포스트시즌 한국시리즈(7전4선승제) 1차전에서 두산 베어스를 4-2로 꺾었다. 팀 창단 처음 오른 한국시리즈 무대에서 7번 연속 한국시리즈에 오른 두산을 제압하며 통합 우승에 한 발자국 다가갔다.

역대 통계로 보면 한국시리즈 1차전 승리 팀의 우승 확률은 73.7%(38차례 중 28차례). 하지만 두산은 정규리그 3위로 한국시리즈에 오른 2001년과 2015년 1차전을 내주고 우승한 바 있다. 2차전은 15일(오후 6시30분) 같은 장소에서 열린다.

삼성 라이온즈와 타이브레이커(1위 결정전) 때 케이티를 정규리그 1위로 이끈 윌리엄 쿠에바스(31)는 이날도 호투를 이어갔다. 투심 패스트볼과 커터를 결정구로 사용하면서 위기를 봉쇄했다. 4회초 1사 2·3루에서 양석환을 투심, 박세혁을 커터로 삼진으로 엮어낸 게 이날 경기 백미였다. 7⅔이닝 7피안타 1사사구 8탈삼진 1실점. 투구수는 100개(스트라이크 71개)였다. 커터는 37개. 시리즈 전 “팀 포스트시즌 첫 승”을 다짐했던 그는 케이티에 역사적인 한국시리즈 첫 승리를 안겼다.

두산 곽빈(22) 또한 준플레이오프 2차전(5일) 등판 이후 8일간 푹 쉰 덕에 선발 몫을 다했다. 5이닝 3피안타 1볼넷 3탈삼진 1실점(비자책). 하지만 두산은 이어 등판한 ‘믿을맨’ 이영하(1⅔이닝 4피안타 3실점), 이현승(1피안타)이 위기를 극복하지 못했다.

정규리그 종료 이후 2주간 쉰 케이티 선수들이었지만 경기 중반을 넘어가며 서서히 타격감이 살아났다. 4회말 상대 실책에 기대 선취점을 뽑아낸 케이티는 1-1 동점이던 7회말 선두 타자 배정대가 두산의 철벽 불펜 투수 이영하를 저격하는 좌월 솔로포로 균형을 깼다. 이영하의 2구째 높게 제구된 시속 134㎞ 슬라이더를 두드렸다. 심우준의 안타와 도루, 그리고 상대 실책으로 만든 1사 1·3루에서는 황재균의 내야 땅볼로 추가점을 뽑았고 이어 강백호가 바뀐 투수 이현승을 상대로 좌전 적시타를 터뜨리면서 4-1로 달아났다.

두산은 2회초 무사 1루, 3회초 1사 2루, 4회초 1사 2·3루 기회 때 쿠에바스에 막히면서 선취 득점 기회를 잃었고, 5회초 1사 3루에서 김재호의 희생 뜬공으로 1점을 얻었다. 9회초 강승호의 적시타로 1점을 따라붙었으나 거기까지였다.

올해 한국시리즈도 추위 때문에 고척돔에서만 열린다. 돔 인조구장 특성상 내야 타구가 빠르고 외야로 공이 뜰 경우 천장 때문에 순간적으로 공을 놓치기 쉽다. 이는 두산 수비 때 그대로 드러났다. 두산 3루수 허경민은 4회말 무사 1루 때 유한준의 타구를 뒤로 흘렸다. 허경민의 실책을 발판 삼아 무사 1·2루 기회를 만든 케이티는 호잉의 희생번트에 이은 장성우의 중견수 희생뜬공으로 손쉽게 선취점을 얻었다. 비록 실점으로 연결되지는 않았으나 두산 좌익수 김재환 또한 5회말 1사 뒤 심우준의 뜬공을 놓쳤다. 1-2로 뒤진 7회말 1사 2루 때는 유격수 김재호가 조용호의 땅볼을 더듬어 1사 1·3루 기회를 내줬고 결국 추가 실점의 빌미가 됐다.

Will the Moon Bear be a ‘probability destroyer’ in the Korean series?

Even the modifier ‘Miracle’ is insufficient to explain. Without a foreign starting pitcher, he went through wild cards (2 games), semi-playoffs (3 games), and play-offs (2 games) to step on the stage of the Korean Series for the first time in history for 7 consecutive years.

Doosan Bears’ ‘Game of Thrones’, which started in 2015 right after Kim Tae-hyung took over as manager, has been featured by Yang Eui-ji (NC), Kim Hyeon-su (LG), Lee Won-seok (Samsung), Min Byung-hun (Lotte/retired), Oh Jae-il (Samsung), Choi Joo-hwan (SSG), etc. It continued despite the steady outflow of players. This year, especially in the absence of foreign players (rockets, Miranda), he showed the potential to rise to the final stage of autumn baseball as if to break the dojo.

Doosan, which defeated the Kiwoom Heroes (5th place), LG Twins (3rd place) and Samsung Lions (2nd place) in order, is now challenging the regular league leader Katy (KT) Wiz for the presidency. Their record this season is 9-7, with Katie leading. The two teams also met in the playoffs last year, and at the time, 3rd place Doosan defeated 2nd place Katie, who was a beginner in fall baseball, with 3 wins and 1 loss.

Doosan showed a strong sense of hitting through wild cards (team batting average of 0.346), semi-playoffs (0.306), and playoffs (0.380). On the mound, Lee Young-ha, Hong Geon-hee, and Lee Hyun-seung were the center of the bullpen. Using the ‘Autumn Baseball DNA’ that he had accumulated over the years as a stepping stone, baseball worked out well as coach Kim Tae-hyung thought. However, there is a physical problem because I played 7 games.

Shim Jae-hak, commentator of MBC Sports Plus, said, “Doosan has the upper hand in the fight for the atmosphere. Because of the physical aspect, I think Doosan will have to see the match within Game 5.” Regarding Katie, he said, “The reason why Samsung lost to Doosan in the playoff despite their superiority was because the players could not control their excitement and tension. . In addition, he predicted that “the timing of pitching change will be the main variable” for this Korean Series.

After the union into a single league in 1989 and the establishment of the semi-play-off system, there have been three cases where the third-placed team in the regular league won the Korean Series. Lotte Giants in 1992 and Doosan in 2001 and 2015. However, the fourth-placed team has never ascended to the throne. This is because there is a physical burden as well as a difference in power.

There was a time when the 4th placed team reached the threshold of the championship in the Korean Series. That was the case with Doosan in 2013. Doosan, who was 4th in the regular league at the time, played 9 matches in the semi-playoffs (5 games) and playoffs (4 games), and went on to the Korean Series against Samsung, winning 3 games (1 loss) first. For the first time in history, it was predicted that the fourth-placed team would revolt, but after that, they fell like a lie and lost three matches and gave up the presidency. The shockwave caused Doosan to fire coach Jin-wook Kim, who was the runner-up in the Korean Series.

Doosan was the first team to compete in a wild card match to perform in the Korean Series. In the best-of-seven Korean Series, the winning team in the first round has a 73.7% chance of winning. However, Doosan won the championship after losing the first match in 2001 and 2015 as well. In 2007, they became the first team to give up the series even after winning the first and second games. This is the reason why Doosan, who was the destroyer of fall baseball probability, is more curious about the move.

The first game of the Korean Series will be held at Gocheok Sky Dome on the 14th (2pm). This year’s Korean Series will be held only at Gocheok Dome due to the cold like last year, and only those who have completed vaccinations are allowed 100% admission.