“Playing hard, defending and encouraging each other is what unites us.”
NC, which was expected to crash after the Tokyo Olympics, is showing unexpected results. In the second half of the season, it is hard to believe that a team with four main fielders is missing.
According to the Korea Baseball Organization (KBO) on the 24th, NC recorded the second highest win rate (0.625) after the KIA (0.667) with 5 wins, 3 losses and 2 draws from the 10th to the 23rd of this month after the Olympics. In addition, from the SSG match on the 19th to the LG match on the 22nd, they achieved 3 consecutive wins, and eventually placed 4th. It is the first time since June that it entered the fourth place.
NC is currently not a normal power. Last month, due to a drinking scandal at an away dormitory that violated quarantine rules, 2nd baseman Park Min-woo, third baseman Park Seok-min, and outfielders Myung-gi Lee and Hee-dong Kwon were suspended for 72 games and the season was out. Also, the starting shortstop Noh Jin-hyuk left due to back pain, and Yang Eui-ji also suffered from elbow pain, making it difficult to play as a catcher.
However, these positions are filled with prospects with little first-team experience, giving vitality to the team. Choi Jeong-won, who is in charge of second baseman Park Min-woo emptied, hit a batting average every day with a batting average of 0.429 in the second half, recording second place in on-base percentage (0.500) and second in stolen bases (four) this month. Kim Ki-hwan had an on-base percentage of 0.262 and showed a throwing defense, making him forget Lee Myung-gi. Kim Joo-won, who is hitting shortstop instead of Noh Jin-hyeok, made his first RBI and stolen bases in his professional debut, recording a batting average of 0.250 in the second half of his stable defense.
The youthful spirit is being proven in foot baseball. In the first half, they stole only 0.6 bases, but in the second half, they increased by one per game to 1.6. Choi Jeong-won, Kim Ki-hwan, and Kim Joo-won tied for 2nd place with 4 stolen bases each. NC coach Lee Dong-wook explained, “I don’t think about winning a few games or getting a few places.
In response to the enthusiasm of rookies, major hitters are also doing their part. In the case of Na Seong-beom, he ranked first in the monthly home run and RBI category with 4 home runs and 10 RBIs this month. Yang Eui-ji is also gaining strength with the highest monthly batting average (0.467) and the highest on-base percentage (0.543). Na Seong-beom said, “There are a lot of hard-working players, so I don’t feel that the team is weak.
Mound stability was also achieved. The original ace Jae-hak Lee achieved two consecutive quality starts in the second half of the season and won two, and Min-Hyeok Shin also achieved two consecutive starts. Kang Tae-kyung, the son of head coach Kang In-kwon, made his debut as the first starter (against Hanwha on the 15th) and showed potential (2 runs in 6 innings). In the bullpen, Hong Seong-min (3 hold) and Lee Yong-chan (3 save) are throwing salt water pitches.
Captain Yang Eui-ji said, “I will do my best to ensure that the players who have filled the vacant positions of the existing players achieve good results.” We will take good care of our players so that we do not disappoint again, and we will work harder to win the hearts of our fans.”
Park Kwan-gyu reporter [email protected]
Issues you may be interested in