The LG Twins held up six fingers and the KT Wiz held up seven when asked by the host how many games they thought the Korean Series would go to.
At a media day event at Jamsil Stadium in Seoul on Saturday, a day ahead of the start of the long-awaited Korean Baseball Classic, the managers and players of the two teams said they expected a long series.
Manager Yoon Kyung-yup, captain Oh Ji-hwan and pitcher Im Chan-kyu attended on behalf of LG, while manager Lee Kang-cheol, pitcher Park Young-hyun and veteran infielder Park Kyung-soo represented KT.
“KT is not an easy opponent because they have good experience in winning the combined (regular season-Korean Series) title two years ago, and they came here with solid power and starting baseball,” said LG coach Yeom Kyung-yup, who took the microphone first.
“Despite our lack of experience, I strongly felt the desire and desire to win from the players as we prepared for the Korean Series,” he said. “We will focus on what we can do better than preparing for the opponent. We will do our best to smile with our fans with a good result at the end.”
“KT has a solid starting line-up and a good batting line-up,” said Yeom, adding, “In terms of the regular season head-to-head, we have the edge with 10 wins and 6 losses, but it’s always been tricky and we’ve won a lot of games with luck, so I hope it ends in Game 6.”
“At the pre-season media day, many people picked us and LG as favourites to win the title, and I’m glad we lived up to that,” said KT head coach Lee Kang-cheol. “LG is the most harmonious two-hit team, and we have a lot to be wary of. We will be well-prepared and strive to reach the top with our team, players and fans in the first Korean Series to be held in Suwon.”
Due to the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), KT lifted the unified championship trophy two years ago at Seoul’s Gocheok Sky Dome, which was played on a neutral field.
“I always think of baseball as a marathon, and I think of the last 42.195 kilometres as the seventh game, so I think this series will go to the end,” Lee said.
The two managers have named Casey Kelly (LG) and Young-pyo Ko (KT) as their starting pitchers for Game 1, which kicks off at 6:30 p.m. on Sunday.
“In the Korean Series, we will play cautious stealing with a high probability,” said Yeom, who led the baseball team in regular season play this year. “Closer Ko Woo-seok threw 16 pitches yesterday and was reported to be fine, so he will close as normal from Game 1.”
Go stopped pitching due to back pain during a practice game and was diagnosed with simple back myalgia at the hospital.
In response to LG’s mobility, KT manager Lee Kang-cheol sent a strong vote of confidence, saying, “As we saw in the 2021 first-place game, the ability of the main catcher, Jang Sung-woo, to prevent stolen bases is completely different in the regular season and the postseason.” “We believe in Jang Sung-woo,” he said.
The relationship between the two coaches, who were two years apart in age at Gwangju Ilgo and worked together as head coach and manager of the Nexen Heroes (now Kiwoom Heroes) for four years from 2013 to 2016, also attracted attention.
The junior Yeom praised Lee’s leadership, saying, “It’s a great strength that KT has come this far with the strength of its starting pitchers.” He added, “He’s a man of steel in the dugout, but I’m glad we can play together in the Korean Series, and I hope we can give the fans a fun game. He knows me so well that he can be a bit of a nuisance.”
He also praised Lee as “not only a good baseball player, but also a coach who is constantly studying.”
“One of the reasons I wanted to go to the Korean Series was to play against him on the best stage,” Lee said, “I didn’t know he was so tough when I was with him as a head coach in the Heroes, and I think that’s why I’ve come this far. Please take care of yourself,” he said, adding that he was concerned about his junior’s health.
The soft-spoken Im Chan-kyu made the audience laugh when he said, “Our team has a brilliant offence, a brilliant bullpen that can throw from 1 to 9 innings, and we can win because we have a manager with a brilliant game plan.”
Park Kyung-soo, who played for LG before moving to KT, said, “The feeling I had when I won the championship two years ago is irreplaceable,” and promised, “We came to the Korean Series with difficulty to enjoy that feeling again, so we will play until the seventh game to show the fans emotional baseball.” 토토사이트