The NC is back in fall baseball for the first time in three years. Doosan is also inching closer to the postseason (PS), while KIA is virtually out of the picture.
NC won 8-4 at home against LG in the 2023 Shinhan Bank SOL KBO League at NC Park in Changwon, Gyeongnam, on Sept. 13. The team finished the head-to-head series with LG, which finished first in the regular season this year, with a 10-6 record.
With the win, fourth-place NC clinched a spot in the PS. With a record of 74 wins, 65 losses, and two ties, NC has secured at least a fifth-place finish regardless of the outcome of the remaining regular season games.
NC returned to fall baseball after a three-year absence in 2020. Back then, the organization won its first-ever unified championship.
Starter Tanner Tully pitched six innings of three-hit ball with two walks and one strikeout to lead the team to a fall baseball berth, improving to 5-2 on the season. At the plate, Sung Wook Kim went 2-for-4 with two doubles and three RBIs.
NC capitalized on LG’s sloppy play to advance to the Korean Series (KS). In the bottom of the first inning, NC scored two runs on a Jason Martin single and an infield grounder by Oh Young-soo that put runners on first and third. With two outs, LG pitcher Lee Ji-gang caught Kim Joo-won’s grounder and threw to first base, but first baseman Kim Bum-seok dropped it. With runners on first and second, Kim Sung-wook doubled and Kim Hyung-joon singled to make it 5-0.
With momentum on their side, NC scored a run in the bottom of the third on Kim Sung-wook’s RBI double and two more in the top of the fourth on Park Min-woo’s RBI single. LG atoned in the fifth inning when Kim Min-seong hit his eighth home run of the season, and Kim Bum-seok atoned with a two-run double in the ninth inning with the bases loaded, but it was not enough to turn the game around.
Doosan defeated KIA 3-1 at home in Jamsil. Fifth-place Doosan, which improved to 73 wins, 65 losses and two ties, extended its lead over sixth-place KIA (71 wins, 69 losses and two ties) to three games.
Homegrown ace Kwak Bin earned his 12th win (7-1) with six innings of one-run ball with nine strikeouts and two walks. Doosan scored three runs in the bottom of the third inning, when the score was 0-0, on Cho’s final infield single and Jose Rojas’ RBI double.
With the win, Doosan secured at least a share of fifth place. If Doosan loses all four of its remaining games and KIA wins both of its remaining 토토 games, the two teams will finish tied for fifth place with 73 wins, 69 losses and two ties. In that case, the two teams will play a “tiebreaker” single-elimination game for the final wild card spot.
SSG defeated Kiwoom 3 games to 2 in Anbang, Incheon. They remain in third place, half a game behind fourth-place NC. Kiwoom ended the season with 58 wins, 83 losses and three draws, a winning percentage of 0.4-1-1.