KT’s momentum is scary. From 10th place at the beginning of June, KT has made a remarkable rise to second place. They are considered to be a challenger to LG, which is in the lead. “We just have to play our baseball,” said LG manager Yeom Kyung-yeop in response to KT’s momentum.
As of the 23rd, LG has a record of 64 wins, 2 ties, and 38 losses (.627 winning percentage). KT is 59 wins, 2 ties, and 46 losses (.562 winning percentage). That’s a 6.5-game difference.
KT was in last place until the beginning of June due to injuries to two starters early in the season. On June 2, they were 16 wins, 2 draws, and 30 losses (.348 winning percentage) with a -14 win-loss margin. The team gradually climbed back up as key players returned from injuries and the team was bolstered by the addition of foreign pitcher Cuevas and the trade of Lee Ho-yeon.
KT is now 43-17 (.717 winning percentage) since June, 28-9 (.757 winning percentage) since July, and 15-3 (.833 winning percentage) in August. The starting lineup (Ko, Cuevas, Benjamin, Uhm, Sang-baek, and Choi) is solid, and the pitching staff has good consistency. The team has rebounded from a -14 win-loss margin to a +13 in just over 80 days.
LG had a rainout against Lotte on the 22nd and 23rd. When asked about KT’s resurgence at Jamsil Stadium on the 23rd, Yoon said, “We’re not looking down, we’re not looking up, we’re just trying to do our best in each game since before the opening day. The players did so well. I didn’t give up a game, they didn’t give up a game, so we came from behind 32 times, and that’s why we are where we are,” he said.
“The next 40 games are the same. It doesn’t matter who we play, it’s most important that we play our baseball. The most important thing is to win the number of games we want to win. At the end of the day, our goal is 88 wins. With 40 games to go, we need to be +5 to +4, 24 wins and 16 losses, a .600 winning percentage. Those are not very difficult numbers.”
LG has been playing consistently at a winning percentage of six or better since June, going 33-1-21 (.611 winning percentage), 18-12 (.600 winning percentage) since July, and 11-5 (.688 winning percentage) in August. With 40 games to go, a winning percentage of 6% is not too far-fetched a goal.
If LG were to reach the 88-win plateau, KT would need to go 29-8 (.783 winning percentage) in their remaining 37 games to tie. KT will need to keep up the incredible pace they’ve been showing since June all the way to the end of the season to catch up. There’s also the Asian Games at the end of September.
“It’s a battle now,” said Yeom. “We have 40 games left, and the most important thing is that none of our players are tired. We have eight players in the winning group, not three. We can achieve our goal in the remaining matches, and we can get stronger as we go.”안전놀이터
In addition to the usual suspects of Ko Woo-seok, Jung Woo-young, and Kim Jin-sung, Ham Deok-ju, Yoo Young-chan, Baek Seung-hyun, and Park Myung-geun are new to the team this year.