In the second game of the playoffs (best-of-three PO-5) against KT WIZ in Suwon on March 31, the NC bats finally cooled down after Park Gun-woo singled up the middle in the third inning.
Seventeen consecutive batters were retired before Park hit a two-run double in the eighth inning.
NC, which scored three runs in the third inning to take control of the game, went cold at the plate and allowed two runs in the eighth inning to fall behind 3-2.
A ninth-inning RBI single by shortstop Kim Joo-won sealed the win and made the series 2-0, but it could have been much easier with an extra run.
The key to NC’s six-game winning streak in this year’s fall baseball, which took them through the wild card decider (1 game), semi-playoffs (3 games), and the PO, was their offense.
NC was hot at the plate, batting .333 (12-for-36) as a team in the Wild Card Decider against the Doosan Bears, and .283 (28-for-99) in the Semi-Po against the SSG Landers.
Not only did they have a high batting average, but they also had long balls in the right place at the right time, and thanks to the so-called “crazy players” in the rotation, they continued their winning streak.
In the PO against KT, NC took the first two games, but the power of the batting lineup has definitely dropped.
In the two games of the PO, NC’s team batting average is 0.243 (18 hits in 74 at-bats). In Game 2, the team’s batting average dropped to .147 (5-for-34).
Three of NC’s five team hits in Game 2 came from Park Gun-woo alone, while Park Min-woo and Kim Joo-won each had one.
There are so-called “cycles” in hitting.
No matter how good a player is, he can’t stay in good form all year long, and the same goes for a team batting lineup.
While batting can be rekindled in a single day, it’s hard to deny that the NC batting lineup’s strength has been declining.
They’ve fallen out of the hitting cycle when they were at their best, and it’s time for them to face the physical challenges that come with playing in a wild-card game.
NC will return home to Changwon NC Park on the 2nd to play the 3rd game of the PO against KT.
A win in either game of the home two-game series will give them a chance to return to the Korean Series for the first time in three years, and their second title since 2020.
The best-case scenario for NC would be to overwhelm their opponents with their mound strength, even if their bats are down a bit.
Indeed, in Game 2 of the PO, when the bats were down, NC was able to win thanks to Shin Min-hyuk, who pitched 6 1/3 innings of one-hit ball with one walk and two strikeouts.
NC manager Kang Myung-hwa, who announced Tanner Tully as the starter for Game 3 and vowed to “prepare well and finish the PO as soon as possible,” wants to give his players one more day of rest.
On the other hand, the desperate KT will have to take advantage of NC’s weaknesses, as their hitting has been dampened by a drop in physical strength. 카지노사이트