‘3G combined for 2’ cliffhanger third straight win, hopes of escape from last place on the line
The KT Wiz came from behind to win a dramatic three-game series. The victory was made even more precious by the mound. Finally, there is hope of escaping the bottom of the standings.
KT won 4-1 against the Samsung Lions in Daegu on the 26th. This is their third straight win. On the 24th and 25th, they played the Kiwoom Heroes at home in Suwon for two consecutive days. They finished the three-game midweek series against Kiwoom with a 2-1 victory in the ‘Winning Series’. In particular, they defeated their opponents’ “one-two punch” Ahn Woo-jin and Eric Yokishi in succession.
The momentum carried KT into the first game of the weekend series against Samsung. From the start, KT was plagued by injuries to their main players. The back-to-back losses dampened the team’s mood. The team’s ranking went from 3rd in mid-April to 9th in late April and 10th in early May.
However, thanks to their recent three-game winning streak, they are now tied for ninth place with the Hanwha Eagles. They’re not out of the race yet, but they’ve laid the groundwork for an escape. KT’s record in the last 10 games is 6-4, which is good for second place.
Most importantly, the pitching has stabilized the offense. During the three-game winning streak, KT’s team runs totaled just two runs. Against Kiwoom on the 24th, starter Ko Young-pyo pitched an ‘ace’ performance with seven scoreless innings to secure a complete game victory over Ahn Woo-jin. Thanks to Ko’s seven innings, KT was able to utilize its most ideal pitching combination of Park Young-hyun and Kim Jae-yoon to close out the game cleanly.
The momentum continued. The next day, Uhm Sang-baek tossed six shutout innings, and Park Young-hyun and Kim Jae-yoon teamed up for a second straight day of tailgate finishes. Young-hyun Park threw two perfect innings with 11 pitches. On the 26th, Choi Yeo-seong fulfilled his role as the starting pitcher with 5⅓ innings of one run (unearned), and the bullpen took care of the rest. The middle relievers of Kim Won-joo, Kim Min-soo, Son Dong-hyun, Park Young-hyun, and Kim Jae-yoon combined for 3⅔ scoreless innings. The team has won four of its last five games, which is a testament to its recent steady play 안전놀이터.
KT, which has been riddled with injuries, recently acquired Lee Ho-yeon in a trade to try and turn things around. The winning streak has given them a much-needed breather.
In various surveys leading up to the start of the season, KT was always a favorite to finish in the top five. Their current performance is rather unexpected. With a solid mound, can KT get back to its original lineup, and is this the beginning of a real rebound ahead of June? With so many games already lost, the future is more important.