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"Powerful throw"

At the first practice match between the two teams, KIA manager Lee Bum-ho smiled broadly. At a practice match against Lotte held in Okinawa, Japan on Friday, Kia beat Lotte 3 to 0 thanks to the scoreless pitching of its new foreign pitcher James Nail (31) and the solo home run of Yoon Do-hyun (21).

Kia showed well-balanced offense and defense on the day. At the bottom of the second inning, Kim Tae-gun, who took the batter's box with runners on the first and third bases, scored a timely RBI by rolling up a low pitch by Lotte's starting pitcher Park Se-woong to take the lead. At the bottom of the third inning, Yoon Do-hyun took the batter's box with two outs and hit a mistake by Park Se-woong to score a solo shot over the right fence to make it 2-0.

That's all for Lotte starter Park Se-woong. He was not in perfect condition just yet. He started the game against Chiba Lotte Group 1 on Saturday and allowed two runs (39 pitches) in two innings, before leaving the mound against KIA in two innings.

Kia, on the other hand, showed off its thickening pitching depth. KIA's starting pitcher Nail displayed perfect pitching with three strikeouts and no runs in two innings. He posted a maximum speed of 149 kilometers per fastball, and showed off his perfect ball control.

Notably, the sinker for the nail was powerful. When striking out Lotte's left-handed batter Ko Seung-min in the top of the second inning, a high sinker was the decisive ball for the nail. Ko turned around thinking it was a ball, but the result was a strike. Nail finished the inning by grounding out Yoo Kang-nam and Jeong-hoon.

KIA's bullpen pitcher lineup, which started in the third inning, was also outstanding. Sideam Park Jun-pyo, who was considered the most demanding pitcher by KT Mel Rojas Jr., allowed no run in two innings, while Lee Joon-young, Jang Hyun-sik, Kwak Do-gyu, Jeon Sang-hyun and Jung Hae-young tied Lotte's batters tightly and kept one inning each without losing a point.

Lotte's batters, who hit 12 RBIs including three homers in a practice match against Samsung on the previous day, remained silent. On top of that, mistakes were made in outfield defense. The team also created a dizzying situation in which serious injuries could occur. Lotte's center fielder Hwang Seong-bin collided head-on with right fielder Yoon Dong-hee while trying to catch a fly ball of the outfield in the bottom of the eighth inning. Hwang, who had failed to catch a fly ball for a while, was eventually replaced. This is a clear mistake in call play, and Lotte seems to have to make up for the opening game.
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Wednesday, February 28, 2024
 
 
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