“I think this is the best matchup of the day, huh?”
A national right-hander and a living legend batsman. There was a hint of disappointment in the legend’s voice as he spoke.
The pitcher had done his job. But the adage “baseball is not a one-man show” was painfully clear. The outfield didn’t help him, but they kept making silly mistakes that sapped his strength, and eventually his knees gave out before he could get over the final hurdle.
Day 21, Suwon KT Wiz Park. Lotte started with Na Kyun-ahn, who is about to be called up to the Hangzhou Asian Games squad. The opponent was the ‘Lotte Killer’ Yoo Ji-seong.
Na Gyun-ahn had thrown more than 110 pitches in three consecutive games, breaking his own single-game record. All three games were quality starts. Acting Lotte manager Lee Jong-woon said, “I expect him to throw at least five innings again today. Six innings would be best.”
Last appearance before the national team call-up. Na Gyun-an’s determination was exceptional. His fastball was up to 148 kilometers and his cutter reached 141 kilometers. His forkball, his main weapon, had a big drop. KT’s top hitters, including Kang Baek-ho and Park Byung-ho, were seen panicking after swinging wildly.
In the first inning, he handled the first and second base crisis well. The second inning was a three-run deficit. And the fateful third inning. 토토사이트
The first batter, Oh Yoon-seok, hit a grounder to shortstop. However, Noh Jin-hyuk made an error. The top of the order was saved by the ninth batter. Na Gyun-an, who had gotten stronger, gave up a hit to Kim Min-hyuk and a walk to veteran Hwang Jae-gyun after a seven-pitch battle.
But Kookdae Blood had a different story. He struck out Kang Baek-ho with the bases loaded. He then faced Park Byung-ho with the bases loaded.
Smelling a game-winner, the pinch-hitter was persistent. He fouled off Na Gyun-ahn, who worked every inch of the zone, and lasted until the 10th pitch. Commentator Kim Sun-woo, a former major leaguer, said, “This was the best play of the game.”