The KT Wiz continued their fearsome momentum in the Korean Series (KS) after a stunning comeback in the playoffs.
In the first game of the best-of-seven 2023 Shinhan Bank SOL KBO League Korean Series at Jamsil Stadium on Sunday, KT defeated the regular-season champion LG Twins 3-2 after Moon Sang-chul hit a celestial two-run homer in the top of the ninth inning.
With the victory, KT will return to the Korean Series for the first time in two years.
KT, the youngest club in the KBO since 2015, won its first Korean Series title in 2021.
In the history of the Korean Series, the team that wins Game 1 has gone on to win the title 29 out of 39 times for a 74.4% winning percentage.
After dropping the first two games of the playoffs to the NC Dinos, KT rebounded with a thrilling three-game sweep to advance to the Korean Series, extending their winning streak to four games this fall.
It was their fifth straight win in the Korean Series.
Game 2 of the Korean Series between KT and LG will be held at 6:30 p.m. on Aug. 8 at the same location.
William Cuevas will start for KT and Won-tae Choi for LG.
KT opened the scoring in the first inning with a clever play by first baseman Kim Sang-soo.
After leading off the first inning with a single up the middle, Kim stole second and advanced to third on a wild pitch before coming home on Hwang Jae-gyun’s grounder to shortstop to give KT a 1-0 lead.
LG turned the tide immediately after the offensive shift.
In the bottom of the first inning, back-to-back singles by Park Hae-min and Kim Hyun-soo put runners on first and third, and Austin Dean hit an infield grounder that KT second baseman Park Kyung-soo missed to make it 1-1.
In the next at-bat, Oh Ji-hwan singled to right to load the bases, and Moon Bo-kyung hit a sacrifice fly to right field to make it 2-1.
KT had runners on first and second with no outs in the top of the second, but Moon Sang-chul failed to lay down a sacrifice bunt, leaving all three runners stranded.
It had been 19 years since a triple in the Korean Series since Game 7 in 2004.
However, KT tied the game at 2-2 in the top of the fourth when Jang Sung-woo singled to right field with runners on first and second after two walks.
The next batter, Anthony Alford, was thrown out at home.
KT tied the game in the seventh inning when Kim Min-hyuk singled to right with runners on second and third, but Jang Jang-woo was tagged out at second base.
The tenuous balance was broken in the ninth inning.
With two outs in the top of the ninth, Choi Jae-dae drew a walk against LG closer Ko Woo-seok after a nine-pitch battle.
Moon Sang-chul, who stepped up to bat, drew a foul on a 2-ball-2-strike count and then scooped up a six-pitch curveball from Ko Woo-seok for a long shot that directly hit the top of the left field fence.
The pinch runner, Moon Sang-chul, drove home the dramatic final run as the pitch stretched out.
With the win in hand, KT brought in Park Young-hyun in the bottom of the ninth to strike out three.
After starting pitcher Ko Young-pyo gave up two runs on seven hits in six innings, Son Dong-hyun pitched two scoreless innings in the seventh to earn the win.
LG, on the other hand, started ace Casey Kelly and held him to two runs on four hits over six and a third innings, but trusted closer Ko Woo-seok collapsed and dropped game one. 토토사이트