“We played our best game in a long time.”
KT Wiz head coach Lee Kang-cheol applauded his players for their success in pushing the playoffs to Game 4.
KT, led by Lee, defeated the NC Dinos 3-0 in the third game of the best-of-five 2023 KBO Postseason Playoffs at Changwon NC Park on April 2.
KT, which had lost both the first and second games of the series, took the series to four games. Game 4 of the playoffs will be played tomorrow (March 3) at the same venue.
Starting pitcher Ko Young-pyo was brilliant, throwing six innings of three-hit ball with two walks and five strikeouts on 105 pitches to earn the win. Behind him, Son Dong-hyun (one hitless inning), Park Young-hyun (one hitless inning), and Kim Jae-yoon (one hitless inning) effectively shut down the NC bats.
In the batting lineup, Choi Jae-dae (2-for-1 with a double, home run, two RBIs and two walks) stood out as the hero of the final two runs in the top of the second inning. Moon Sang-chul (1-for-4, 1 RBI, 1 home run, 1 RBI), who drew a wedge solo arch in the top of the seventh inning, also contributed.
After the game, KT head coach Lee Kang-cheol was pleased, saying, “We played like a team for the first time in a long time.”
The following is a one-on-one interview with Lee Kang-cheol.
Q. How would you summarize the game?
- It must have been tough for Ko Young-pyo, but he overcame it well. He pitched well and brought us the win. Son Dong-hyun, Park Young-hyun, and Kim Jae-yoon also pitched well. The batting lineup was down in the first inning (runners on first and third with no outs), but Bae Jae-dae’s home run got us going. After that, with no runs scored, Moon Sang-chul’s home run allowed the young pitchers to relax. I think we played like a team for the first time in a long time. (Second baseman) Park Kyung-soo made a good defense (on Jason Martin’s hit in the seventh inning) and (catcher) Jang Jang-woo made a good steal (of Kim Joo-won’s double in the sixth inning).
Q. What can you say about Young-pyo Ko.
-It was a long break (due to injury), and it must have been hard for him to pitch after two losses. He pitched his way out of a tough situation, which is typical of Young-pyo Ko, and I think that’s why he was able to go to Game 4.
Q. You chose William Cuevas, who started Game 1, to start Game 4.
- As soon as Game 1 was over, I told him to get ready for Game 4 because he had a good pitch count. I knew we were going to go to Game 4, so I got Cuevas ready. He was ready, too.
Q. Moon Sang-chul has been filling the void left by Kang Baek-ho.
- (Kang) Baek-ho is also a Baek-ho, but it’s a shame that (Kim) Min-hyuk can’t come out. Moon Sang-chul has been hitting really well and doing a good job.
Q. Bae Jae-dae and Moon Sang-chul are good, but Anthony Alford and Park Byung-ho’s batting is a little disappointing.
- It would be easier if those players did well, but they can’t all do well. Obviously, there are players who are in good form. I hope I can get a chance in front of him. I’m glad that (Bae) Jung-dae and (Moon) Sang-chul played well today. We played the kind of baseball we’ve been playing in the pennant race.
Q. Before the game, you expressed confidence that KT would have the edge if the series went to Game 4.
- In Game 1, Cuevas (three innings, six hits, one run, two homers, two walks, seven strikeouts, four earned runs) didn’t have a bad outing. He told 메이저토토사이트 me he checked some boxes. It’s not that (opposing starter) Song Myung-ki isn’t good, it’s just that we have the edge on paper.
Q. Closer Kim Jae-yoon did a great job in the ninth inning.
I went to the plate and saw him pitching and thought it was fine. He got a hit, but he threw his own ball. I think he’ll be good enough.