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Bae Jeong-dae couldn’t smile even when the bases were loaded

KT Wiz, who finished the regular season in second place, missed out on victory in the first game of the playoffs. Still, I was able to take comfort in Bae Jeong-dae’s grand slam.

KT lost 5-9 to NC Dinos in the second game of the 2023 Shinhan Bank SOL KBO Playoffs held at Suwon KT Wiz Park on the 30th. Starting pitcher William Cuevas performed poorly, allowing 6 hits (1 home run), 2 walks, 2 strikeouts, and 7 runs (4 earned) in 3 innings, and excluding Moon Sang-cheol's solo shot in the bottom of the 3rd inning, it was disappointing that only 1 run was scored until the bottom of the 8th inning.

The grand slam hit, but it was too late.

Bae Jeong-dae, who came to the plate with bases loaded and 2 outs in the bottom of the 9th inning when the team was trailing 1-9, hit NC's closing pitcher Lee Yong-chan's first pitch fastball and hit a grand slam that went over the left wall. It was his second career postseason home run since the 2021 Korean Series against the Doosan Bears.

On this day, Bae Jeong-dae recorded 2 hits and 4 RBIs in 4 at-bats, including a home run, and was the only player on the team to achieve multiple hits. KT coach Lee Kang-cheol also praised Bae Jeong-dae, saying, "I think it's encouraging that Bae Jeong-dae ended the game on a good note with a grand slam at the end."

Bae Jeong-dae, who met with reporters before the second game of the playoffs on the 31st, said, "I watched a video of (Lee Yong-chan's) pitching before the game, and it was mainly about fastballs. So I went in aiming for a fastball on the first pitch, and it turned out to be a home run with good results. “I looked back.

Bae Jeong-dae said, "The players didn't talk much among themselves, and I think that if they keep doing what they were doing, there will be better results than the previous day." He added, "Opponent starter Eric Peddy's ball was very good, and William Cuevas' ball was also good, but the NC players "There were parts of the game that were tilted because we were good at targeting Cuevas. Everyone knows about the defense, but there were parts that were a bit uneasy. I think a stable defense will come first, and I think today (game 2) will be different," he said.

Last year, Bae Jeong-dae led the team to the semi-playoffs with 2 hits in 3 at-bats, 3 RBIs, and 1 walk in the wild card game against the KIA Tigers, while in the semi-playoffs against Kiwoom Heroes, he led the team with a batting average of 0.304 with 7 hits in 23 at-bats, 1 RBI, and 1 walk. I raised my grades. Bae Jeong-dae is showing a strong performance even in big games.

Actually, I don't really care. Bae Jeong-dae's opinion is that the team's victory takes priority over individual performance. He said, "I don't think that that part is particularly important, and if it helps the team win, it's the happiest thing as a player." He said, "I hit a home run yesterday, but honestly, I wasn't that happy after hitting the home run."

Although we lost the first game, we still had a chance. It is also true that, having rested for three weeks, he has more physical strength compared to NC, who came up from the wild card match. Bae Jeong-dae said, “Physically, it seems like we have definitely recovered (during the break), and the players seemed a little nervous yesterday,” adding, “Today, we will try to relieve that tension and produce good results.”

KT is Kim Sang-soo (shortstop) - Hwang Jae-gyun (third baseman) - Anthony Alford (left fielder) - Park Byeong-ho (first baseman) - Jang Seong-woo (catcher) - Moon Sang-cheol (designated hitter) - Cho Yong-ho (right fielder) - Bae Jeong-dae (center fielder) - Park Kyung-soo ( The lineup was organized in the order of (second baseman). There is no difference from the previous day, except that Cho Yong-ho and Moon Sang-cheol's batting order were adjusted.

The assigned unit was placed at number 8. KT coach Lee Kang-cheol took out the 'No. 8 assigned table' card for two days in a row, considering that many scoring situations occur in the 4th or 5th inning and that there may be chances at 3rd or 8th in the batting order.

Bae Jeong-dae said, "I heard about that from the power analysis team, so I'm aiming to get on base more, and I'm thinking of trying to score runs by getting on base rather than feeling like I'm solving the problem myself." He added, "Our team decided on a wild card. “I think the players will find themselves as they have experienced the Korean Series before,” he said.



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Friday, December 22, 2023
 
 
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