The No. 1 LG Twins and No. 2 KT Wiz will face off in Suwon for a three-game series starting on April 5. The big matchup for first place and a preview of the Korean Series.
Last weekend, LG was swept in two games by last-place Hanwha, while KT was swept in three games by ninth-place Kiwoom. It’s a matchup they can’t afford to lose.메이저놀이터
LG had a comfortable seven- to eight-game lead over the second-place chasers, but a frightening second-half surge by KT closed the gap. KT’s three-game losing streak has left them 5.5 games behind. Depending on the outcome of the three-game series, the gap between first and second place could fluctuate between 2.5 and 8.5 games.
KT prepared its lineup for the three-game series against LG in the order of Cuevas (5 days), Benjamin (6 days), and Ko Young-pyo (7 days). The 1-3 starters will be used accordingly. In response, coach Yeom Kyung-yup said from the end of August, “Benjamin will come in unconditionally (as a starter). We just need to win,” he said.
This is because Benjamin is a representative pitcher of LG’s weakness this season. Benjamin was the opening day starter against LG this year, pitching six innings and two hits and one run (unearned) to win, and whenever he faced LG, he was terrifying.
Last year, Benjamin took the loss in his first start against LG, giving up three runs in four innings, but this year was a completely different story. Benjamin is 4-0 with a 0.71 ERA in four games for the LG Electronics. He has pitched 25⅓ innings in four games, giving up eight runs (two earned). (Benjamin is 10-5 with a 4.72 ERA in 20 games, excluding the LG Electronics games.)
“We’re 5-5 against KT, but we’ve lost four games to Benjamin. It’s time to win one, and we need to win one,” he emphasized. The team needs to break the Benjamin jinx once in the regular season, even if it means facing him in the postseason.
In all five of his August starts, Cuevas had a Quality Start Plus (seven or more innings and three or fewer earned runs), going 5-0 with a 0.50 ERA in 36 innings. However, Cuevas is winless in two starts against LG with an 11.25 ERA. He gave up four runs in five innings and six runs in three innings.
Young-pyo Ko, who has recorded 12 consecutive quality starts and seven consecutive quality starts plus, has also struggled against LG this year, going winless in three starts with a 6.57 ERA. On May 18, he was roughed up for eight runs on 12 hits in 4⅔ innings. On July 26, he pitched well with seven innings of one-run ball but was unable to secure the win.
LG’s top priority in the three-game series against KT is to get to Benjamin.