‘KBO 3rd place’ regular season final day decided today
The winner of the ‘3rd place regular season’ battle between the SSG Landers and NC Dinos in the Korean Baseball Organization will be decided on Sunday. It’s the final day of the season.
SSG Landers’ Kim Kwang-hyun (left) and KIA Tigers’ Yang Hyun-jong.
With both teams in desperate need of a win, the KBO’s two best pitchers, Kim Kwang-hyun (SSG) and
Yang Hyeon-jong (KIA Tigers), hold the casting lots for the third-place battle. SSG hopes Kim Kwang-hyun
can lead them to victory, while NC needs Yang Hyun-jong to get the job done.
SSG and NC will play the final game of the day for the third spot. SSG will take on the fifth-place Doosan
Bears at SSG Landers Field in Incheon, while NC will face KIA at Gwangju-Kia Champions Field.
SSG currently holds the advantage in the race for third place.
In the 16th game, SSG and NC had mixed results. SSG earned a 3-2 win against Doosan in Jamsil, while
NC suffered a 2-4 upset loss against KIA in Gwangju.
With 75 wins, 3 draws and 65 losses, SSG moved into third place, ahead of NC (75 wins, 2 draws and 66
losses). As a result, SSG can clinch third place on its own if it wins the regular season finale against Doosan.
SSG coach Kim Won-hyung said,
“There is only one last game left. Let’s play a game without regrets,” he encouraged the team.
With a golden opportunity, SSG is determined to finish third on their own. “We’re not thinking about the
postseason at all,” said Kim. We’re going to play our best until the last game of the regular season,” said Kim.
SSG Landers’ Kim Kwang-hyun in action.
SSG made the decision to use Kim Kwang-hyun, who was the starter in last year’s Korean Series, in the
final game of the regular season instead of the first game of the postseason.
The question is whether he can live up to expectations. In 29 appearances this year, Kim went 8-8 with a
3.66 ERA. This is down from last season (13-3 with a 2.13 ERA), when he returned from his Major League
Baseball (MLB) challenge. His streak of double-digit wins in consecutive seasons, dating back to 2013, also came to a halt at seven.
Kim Kwang-hyun hasn’t pitched cleanly in his two October outings either, giving up four runs in both.
Doosan also has the highest batting average against him this season at .305.
For NC, which has slipped to fourth place, to climb to third, it’s a matter of case by case. If SSG loses to
Doosan and NC wins or draws against KIA, NC will take third place. However, if SSG catches Doosan, NC
will have to play the wildcard match in fourth place regardless of the outcome.
Kia Tigers’ Yang Hyun-jong battles back.
NC must first take care of KIA and then wait to see the outcome of the Doosan-SSG game. For NC to beat
KIA, they’ll need to take down their starting pitcher, Yang Hyun-jong.
Like Kim Kwang-hyun, Yang has only won eight games this year (11 losses), ending his quest for double-
digit wins for the ninth straight season. Since June, he hasn’t looked like himself, pitching up and down.
However, he rebounded with a no-hitter against the Gwangju Kiwoom Heroes on April 11, striking out six over eight innings. Yang Hyun-jong is also determined to finish the job in front of the KIA fans at the stadium.
NC has faced Yang twice this year, scoring four runs each and going 1-1. However, it remains to be seen how explosive the NC batting lineup will be. NC hasn’t exactly been a hot offense in their last five games, scoring 2-1-8-5-2-2. 카지노사이트존