Lotte ‘release myth’, at the age of 35, the most appearances in the second half, ‘fighting spirit’… but the team only wins 1, good fights are in vain
Veteran bullpen Kim Sang-soo (35, Lotte Giants) is recovering in the second half of the season. He is doing well despite frequent appearances, but the team is wasting his appearances.
In the 2023 Shinhan Bank SOL KBO League home game against SSG Landers held at Sajik Baseball Stadium in Busan on the 5th, Kim Sang-soo climbed the mound as Lotte’s third pitcher in the top of the 5th inning when the team was leading 5-3 with one company loaded.메이저놀이터
Faced with pinch hitter Kang-Min Kim, Sang-Soo Kim induced a ground ball to third base through a first pitch changing ball. If it was normal, it could have been connected by double play, third baseman Han Dong-hee caught it, stepped on the third base and threw it home. As the force situation was lifted, catcher Jeong Bo-geun, who received the ball, had to tag the runner on third base, but somehow, Jeong Bo-geun only stepped on the home plate and looked at first base. He gave up a point in vain.
When Lotte Kim Sang-soo (far right) grounded 3rd base with 1 out in the top of the 5th inning against Sajik SSG on the 5th, Han Dong-hee stepped on the 3rd base and forced 2nd base runner Choi Jeong out, but he did not tag 3rd base runner Joo-Hwan Choi at home. Losing and regretting it.
Still, Lotte was ahead 5-4, but Kim Sang-soo, who came up in the 6th inning and digested multi-innings, eventually allowed a turnaround in the 2nd inning. After two outs, Choo Shin-soo hit the right fence with a huge single hit, and Choi Ji-hoon hit a double that went on the third base line. As the batted ball hit the tarp and came out, the left fielder’s processing was delayed, and Choo Shin-soo dug into the home. Then Choi Joo-hwan’s timely hit came out, and the score changed to 5-6, SSG’s lead.
The team tied the score at 6-6 with Jeong-hoon’s solo home run at the end of the 7th inning, and Kim Sang-soo avoided becoming a losing pitcher. However, Lotte ended up losing 6-7 after 10 overtime matches, confirming the weekend losing series.
Including this game, Kim Sang-soo is working on a tight pitching schedule in the second half. After the All-Star break, out of 14 games played by Lotte, Kim Sang-soo took the mound in 9 games, which is tied for first place among all 10 clubs. At the age of 35, which is not small for a player, he is already supporting his relief team by recording only two consecutive fights in the second half. Even so, he is making good grades with an earned run average of 2.35.
He is also good at pitching. He was on a 12-game scoreless streak until he allowed two runs in the game on the 5th. In particular, he had excellent crisis management skills, allowing 3 strikeouts and 1 double hit in the 5 bases loaded situation and not allowing a single hit.
In the game against KIA in Gwangju on the 28th of last month, he was put in a 1st and 2nd base situation with hits and errors, but he turned Kim Tae-gun into a double stroke in front of the third baseman. Then, in the match against Sajik NC on the 1st, in the beginning of the 7th inning, where he faced 3-3, he ended the inning by double killing Park Min-woo at 1st and 3rd base.
The command tower also praised Kim Sang-soo, who is making frequent appearances in such a necessary situation. Lotte manager Larry Sutton said, “Kim Sang-soo has been of great help to the team lately. He often comes up from a crisis situation and finishes the innings well.”
However, putting his fighting spirit to shame, Lotte seldom wins on Kim Sang-soo’s pitching day. Lotte, which has only 4 wins in 14 games in the second half, lost all of the 9 games Kim Sang-soo posted, except for the Sajik Kiwoom match on the 21st of last month. Kim Sang-soo is forcibly becoming a pursuit and defeat group.
Kim Sang-soo, who was released from SSG last season, made a new nest with Lotte this year. An official from Lotte said, “Kim Sang-soo was virtually like recruiting a free agent (FA). He competed with other teams to recruit him.” As expected, Kim Sang-soo continued his good pitching with an ERA of 0.87 for the month of April, becoming a great help to Lotte’s salvation team. However, his earned run average rose to 5.23 in May and 11.12 in June.
Kim Sang-soo, who was once eliminated from the first team in mid-June, was somewhat shaken after returning, but in July, he is doing well with 10 unbeaten games. In order for his pitching, which is showing such a pleasant form, not to be in vain, Lotte needs to promote.