KT WIZ, which was in danger of being eliminated from the fall stage, fought back.
KT defeated the NC Dinos 3-0 in the visiting team’s third game of the 2023 Shinhan Bank SOL KBO Postseason Playoffs (PO) at Changwon NC Park on April 2.
After dropping the first and second games of the best-of-five series at home, KT was on the brink of a best-of-three PO, but took a breath of fresh air with the win in Game 3.
NC, which had won nine straight postseason (PS) games from Game 4 of the 2020 Korean Series (KS) to Game 2 of this year’s PO to tie the KBO’s longest PS winning streak, achieved by the Hattae Tigers from Game 4 of the 1987 PO to Game 3 of the 1988 KS, failed to set a new record with the loss.
NC’s undefeated streak in the 2023 postseason (six games) was also halted in the seventh game.
The two teams will play Game 4 at 6:30 p.m. on March 3 at Changwon NC Park.
KT announced William Cuevas, who started Game 1, and NC announced Song Myung-ki, who pitched for the first time in the PO, as the starters for Game 4.
Before the game, KT manager Lee Kang-cheol said, “If we take the lead early in the game, we have a chance to win.” He also expressed his trust in starter Ko Young-pyo.
True to Lee’s wishes, KT took the lead in the top of the second inning with a two-run home run by Jae-hyun Choi, and the bullpen shut down the NC bats to secure a valuable first win.
In the top of the first inning, back-to-back singles by Kim Sang-soo and Hwang Jae-gyun put runners on first and third with no outs, but center fielder Anthony Alford, Park Byung-ho, and Jang Jang-woo were stranded with back-to-back walks and failed to score.
However, in the top of the second inning, Choi Sung-ho lined a single up the middle.
With the bases loaded and one out, he took a 122-kilometer-per-hour slider from NC starter Tanner Tully for a two-run arch over the left field wall, giving KT the lead for the first time in the PO.
After hitting a walk-off home run in the bottom of the ninth inning of Game 1, Choi hit the game-winning two-run shot in Game 3, becoming the first KT batter to hit two or more home runs in a single postseason.
He also became KT’s second multi-homer hitter in a single postseason.
Moon led off the top of the seventh inning with a 2-0 lead and hit a 130-kilometer-per-hour slider from NC left-hander Kim Young-gyu over the left field wall.
Moon Sang-chul, who hit a three-run solo shot in the first game of the PO, continued his exhilarating touch in the third inning, giving KT the “extra run” they were eagerly awaiting.
KT’s homegrown ace, Ko Young-pyo, pitched six innings of three-hit ball, striking out five with his ‘dancing changeup’.
Ko got a double treat by picking up his first career postseason win on his son’s first birthday.
He was also named the Most Valuable Player (MVP) of the day and took home a $1 million prize.
With Ko Young-pyo on the mound, the NC batters didn’t even reach second base.
KT bullpen Son Dong-hyun, Park Young-hyun, and Kim Jae-yoon, who were activated from the seventh inning, also pitched one inning each to secure the win.
The NC batters, who had hit home runs in six consecutive PS games this year until the second game of the PO, ended the game without reaching second base.
NC’s Park Min-woo hit an infield single in the bottom of the ninth inning to tie former LG Twins manager Ryu Ji-hyun’s PO record of 12 consecutive games with a hit, but he was unable to smile as his team lost. 토토사이트