Val has no slump. The KIA Tigers’ offense is expected to gradually improve.
The Kia Tigers cruised to a 17-3 victory over the SSG Landers of the 2023 KBO League on April 5 at SSG Landers Field in Incheon. The Tigers pounded out 17 hits, breaking their team record for runs in a single game this season. Na Sung-beom (1 home run, 2 doubles), Kim Do-young (2 home runs), and Han Jun-soo (1 home run, 2 doubles) combined for six of the long balls. Starting pitcher Yoon Young-cheol had his first quality start (6+ innings – 3 earned runs or less) in three games.
KIA’s offense was as much about mobility as it was about firepower. For the first time, the Athletics trio of Kim Do-young, Park Chan-ho, and Choi Won-joon all stole bases in the same game.
Kim Do-young, batting second, drew an infield single from opposing pitcher Park Jong-hoon with the bases loaded in the first inning and then stole second base on Na Sung-bum’s subsequent at-bat. He took advantage of the pitcher’s and catcher’s blocking and throwing timing perfectly. KIA took the lead in the next at-bat when Na Sung-beom doubled to right field. Park Jong-hoon gave up a walk to Choi Hyung-woo and an RBI double to Hwang Dae-in.
In the second inning, Park Chan-ho, the stolen base king (42) from last season (2022), took over the baton. With the bases loaded, he reached on an infield single and then stole second on Choi Won-jun’s at-bat. It was Park’s 16th stolen base of the season. It moved him into a tie for sixth place in that category.
He was unable to score in the next at-bat, but shook the opposing battery and infield again in the fifth inning. With his team leading 7-2, Park Chan-ho laid down a sacrifice bunt against SSG pitcher Jung Sung-gon and advanced to second on a wild pitch. He then stole third base on a 2-ball-0 strike that was so perfect that the catcher couldn’t even catch it. Choi Won-jun also led off with a walk and then stole second on Kim Do-young’s first pitch of the at-bat. The SSG infield, conscious of the home rush of the third baseman, failed to stop Choi. KIA then stretched the lead to 10-2 when Na Sung-bum singled and Choi Hyung-woo walked, and in the ensuing at-bat, Socrates Brito scored again on a groundout against reliever Baek Seung-gun.메이저놀이터
After an up-and-down week last week, the KIA bats came out firing from the first game of the week (Game 4 was rained out). While it’s encouraging to see so many long balls, it’s even more impressive to see the Athletics create scoring opportunities with their feet, like in the fifth inning, where they added two RBIs on two ground balls. Individual hitting is always up and down. The power of “football” without ups and downs is more threatening to opponents.