‘3rd place war, 3 teams within 0.5 games’ NC escapes 6-game losing streak→3rd place…SSG loses 7-game winning streak→5th place…Doosan falls behind Lotte→4th place…

NC narrowly escaped a six-game losing streak. SSG’s six-game winning streak comes to a halt.

NC won the match against SSG by a single point, 3-2, at NC Park in Changwon on July 7. NC jumped from fifth to third place.

NC is now 71-2-63 (.530 winning percentage), while SSG is 71-3-64 (.5259 winning percentage). Doosan fell to 70-2-63 (.5263 winning percentage) with a loss to Lotte on the day.

NC is in third place, Doosan is in fourth, and SSG is in fifth. NC is 0.5 games ahead of Doosan and SSG. It’s a close 3rd place battle.

NC starter Tanner pitched 5⅓ innings, allowing two runs on eight hits with two walks and five strikeouts. He worked out of a bases-loaded and bases-loaded jam. Ryu Jin-wook pitched ⅔ innings and Lim Jung-ho finished 1⅓ innings. Lee Yong-chan came in after the first out of the eighth inning and pitched 1⅔ scoreless innings to earn the save.

SSG starter Song Young-jin was hit by a pitch twice and took the loss after giving up three runs on five hits in four innings.

NC-SSG Starting Lineups

NC started with Son Asub (designated hitter), Do Tae-hoon (second base), Park Gun-woo (right field), Martin (center field), Kwon Hee-dong (left field), Seo Ho-cheol (third base), Oh Young-soo (first base), Park Se-hyuk (catcher), and Kim Han-byul (shortstop). Park Min-woo, who was substituted during the SSG game on the 5th, missed this game due to illness.

SSG started Choo Shin-soo (designated hitter), Oh Tae-gon (first base), Choi Jung (third base), Eredia (center field), Han Yoo-seom (right field), Ha Jae-hoon (left field), Kim Sung-hyun (shortstop), Kim Min-sik (catcher), and Kim Chan-hyung (second base). Choi returned to the starting lineup after recovering from a back injury and hit back-to-back home runs against Hanwha on the 6th.

SSG scores first

SSG opened the scoring in the first inning when leadoff hitter Choo Shin-soo drew a walk. Oh Tae-gon flied out to center field, but Choi Jeong-jeong singled to right to put runners on first and second.

Heredia reached on a fielder’s choice to load the bases, but Han Yoo-seom singled through the right side to bring home the second run. With runners on second and third, Ha struck out looking.

In the bottom of the first inning, SSG starting pitcher Song Young-jin was hit in the chest by a ground ball from NC’s top hitter Son Asub. It grazed his glove, hit him in the chest, and bounced sideways. He quickly caught it and threw to first base for the out. Song signaled to the bench that he was okay, and after throwing one practice pitch, he continued to play. The first inning ended with a triple play.

SSG misses out on first inning opportunity

In the second inning, SSG’s leadoff hitter Kim Sung-hyun singled up the middle. Kim Min-sik tried to lay down a sacrifice bunt, but the pitcher’s throwing error at first base put runners on first and second. Kim laid down another sacrifice bunt, putting runners on first and second and third.

Choo Shin-soo hit an infield single to shortstop, but the runners couldn’t run, leaving the bases loaded. With a good chance, Oh Tae-gon flied out to shortstop and Choi Jung grounded out to third base to end the threat.

NC turns the game around

NC fought back in the third inning. After leadoff hitter Park Se-hyuk struck out, Kim Han-byul singled up the middle. Son hit a pitch that hit SSG pitcher Song Young-jin in the hip. It deflected toward third base for an infield hit. Runners on first and second.

After being hit, Song was in some pain and the pitching coach came to the mound to check on him. He threw a few practice pitches to make sure he felt fine. He then continued to pitch. Do Tae-hoon singled to center field to load the bases.

Park Gun-woo hit a single to right-center field that went over the second baseman’s head, bringing two runners home. 2-1 lead. With runners on first and third, Martin hit a sacrifice fly to center field that was caught in front of the fence to make it 3-1.

SSG misses out on a bases-loaded opportunity

SSG had another chance to load the bases in the fourth inning. Leadoff hitter Kim Sung-hyun singled up the middle, and Kim Min-sik drew a walk to put runners on first and second. Kim attempted a triple on a one-ball, two-strike play and rolled toward third base. The pitcher caught it and threw to first for a safe. Bunt hit.

With the bases loaded, Choo Shin-soo was pinch-hitting for Kim Kang-min. Kim struck out on three pitches. Oh Tae-gon hit a line drive into center field, where Oh Young-soo made a leaping catch. Choi Jung-jeong hit a grounder to shortstop, ending the offense without a run.

SSG pulls within one run

SSG created another chance in the sixth inning. One out later, Kim Chan-hyung hit a double to right-center field. NC removed starter Tanner and brought in right-hander Ryu Jin-wook as the second pitcher. Kim Kang-min pinch-hit for left fielder Choi Joo-hwan, who struck out.

Oh Tae-gon singled through the left side of the infield to put runners at first and third. Choi Jung-jeong drew a walk to load the bases. Heredia walked and Ryu Jin-wook’s wild pitch allowed the runner from third to score, making it 3-2. Heredia walked to load the bases again. Han Yoo-seom grounded out to the second baseman, ending the tying run’s chances.

NC enters the bottom of the eighth

NC was unable to capitalize on a rally in the bottom of the sixth. Martin, the leadoff hitter, singled to right and Kwon Hee-dong singled to left to put runners on first and second with no outs. Seo Ho-cheol laid down a sacrifice bunt to put runners on second and third. SSG walked Oh Young-soo to load the bases with one out.

With the bases loaded, Park Se-hyuk struck out against Choi Min-joon. Pinch-hitter Kim Sung-wook also struck out swinging.캡틴토토

SSG started the seventh inning with a leadoff single to right by Ha Jae-hoon. NC made a pitching change from Ryu Jin-wook to Lim Jung-ho. Kim Sung-hyun flied out to center, Kim Min-sik fouled out to first, and Kim Chan-hyung grounded out to third.

With a 3-2 lead in the top of the eighth, NC brought in closer Lee Yong-chan, who got Oh Tae-gon to ground out to shortstop and Choi Jeong-jeong to strike out swinging to end the inning.

In the ninth, Lee walked Heredia to lead off the inning. He got Han Yoo-seom to fly out to center field, struck out Ha Jae-hoon, and got Kim Sung-hyun to ground out to shortstop to end the game.

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