The momentum of the Lotte Giants of the Korean Baseball Organization (KBO), who were on the rise this spring, seems to have slowed down as they enter the summer. Lotte’s 4-6 late-game loss to the Samsung Lions on Nov. 11 dropped them to fourth place in the standings, losing ground to the NC Dinos, who beat the SSG Landers 8-4 on the same day to extend their winning streak to five games. They are 1-6 in their last seven games and 3-7 in their last 10 games, the worst record among the 10 teams in the KBO.먹튀검증
With less than 60 games played, the current standings don’t matter much. However, the problem is that the team has been gradually exposing its lurking insecurities and dropping winnable games.
At the beginning of the season, when Dan Streeley, Charlie Barnes, and Park Se-woong were struggling, the bullpen, including Kim Sang-soo, Kim Jin-wook, Koo Seung-min, and Kim Won-joong, performed brilliantly and led the team to a winning streak. However, the back-to-back games took its toll. And as the starting pitchers have improved this month, the bullpen has been shaky this time around.
In the 11th game, Park Se-woong pitched a scoreless sixth inning, but Koo Seung-min, who came on with two outs in the seventh, allowed two runners to cross home plate, including a runner he walked. Kim Won-joong then came on to close out the eighth, and Kim Do-gyu retired the side in order in the ninth, before Yoon Dong-hee homered in the top of the 10th to make it 4-3. However, a walk-off home run in the bottom of the 10th was the final blow. If the bullpen had been strong, this game could have been close.
Yoon Dong-hee of the Lotte Giants batted fourth on the 11th and hit his first home run of the season. Courtesy of the Lotte Giants
Lotte’s strategy this season has been to not rely on any one player, but to rely on their depth to win games. This means that key players such as Han Dong-hee, Kim Sang-soo, and Kim Jin-wook, who were eventually demoted to the second team, will need to rebuild and move up to the first team to regain their form.
Facing their biggest test since the start of the 2023 season, Lotte will begin a three-game home stand against the 10th-ranked Hanwha Eagles on the 13th, followed by a three-game weekend away series against leaders SSG on the 16th.