LG Twins manager Yoon Kyung-yeop (55) made an early decision to pull starter Choi Won-tae with one out in the first inning.
Despite being down throughout the game, Yeom showed his determination to win by using bullpen pitcher after bullpen pitcher, finally turning the game around in the bottom of the eighth inning.
LG defeated the KT Wiz 5-4 in the second game of the Korean Baseball Organization’s (KBO) Korean Series at Jamsil Stadium in Seoul on April 8. The team avenged a 2-3 loss the day before and evened the series.
After the game, coach Yoon Kyung-yeop said, “Our starter Choi Won-tae struggled with his pitches early in the game, which made it difficult for us. However, the bullpen held on and laid the foundation for the win. After reviewing the game, he hoped that “it will give us confidence that we can take the series and not just win one game.” He added, “Our young bullpen had a great experience today.
“Our young bullpen had a very good experience today. We can use our young bullpen, including Jung Woo-young, Baek Seung-hyun, and Yoo Young-chan, boldly in the remaining games.”
He was also pleased that Go Woo-seok, who took the loss in Game 1, earned the save in Game 2 to preserve the one-run victory.
“Go Woo-seok didn’t pitch badly in the first game. “He was back to his best today,” Yeom said, “and the opponent (Moon Sang-chul) hit him well. We need Woo-seok to stay in the closer’s spot to achieve our goal.”
LG is looking to reach the Korean Series for the first time in 21 years since 2002 and the first time in 29 years since 1994.
Yoon Kyung-yeop is back in the Korean Series for the first time in nine years since 2014, when he led the Nexen Heroes (now Kiwoom). Yoon has yet to win a championship as a manager.
“For me personally, today’s win means a lot,” he said.
Unsurprisingly, Choi Won-tae’s early demise was not in Yeom’s plans.
However, Yeom was flexible enough to pull off the upset.
“We have more cards to play in the bullpen,” Yeom said, reiterating another benefit of the victory, “Game 3 will start with Im Chan-kyu. For Game 4, we have to think about whether to use Choi Won-tae, who threw 200,000 pitches today, or go with 토토 Kim Yun-sik as originally planned. There’s also a possibility that I’ll take Choi Won-tae out of the lineup altogether.” He also shared his newfound concerns.
However, the victory in the second game solved the biggest problem.
“I really apologized to the fans for losing the first game. I couldn’t reciprocate their passionate support, and I couldn’t sleep properly.” “I’m really happy that our players came together today and showed the fans a good game. Thank you to the players, thank you to the fans,” he said in relief.