The “brothers” avenged their humiliation at the hands of the Aussies at the World Baseball Classic (WBC) in March.
But it was a hard-fought victory. It was a reminder that the Aussies are no longer a team to be taken lightly.
There were some bright spots. Noh Si-hwan (Hanwha Eagles) and Kim Joo-won (NC Dinos) were on fire at the plate, and Kim Do-young (KIA Tigers) made his first international appearance. Out of the bullpen, Choi Seung-yong (Doosan Bears) and Jung Hae-young (KIA) also stood out.
South Korea’s baseball team, led by head coach Ryu Jung-il, earned a hard-fought 3-2 victory over Australia in the first round of the 2023 Asian Professional Baseball Championship (APBC) qualifiers at the Tokyo Dome in Japan on Saturday. Noh Si-hwan hit the game-winning hit in the 10th inning of extra innings after the score was tied 2-2.
Despite the win, it was disappointing to see the team struggle against Australia.
Australia has a shorter history of professional baseball than Korea. The Australian Baseball League (ABL) started in 2009 and is now in its 14th year. 온라인카지노 Compared to Korea and Japan, the league is considered semi-professional.
In international tournaments with professional players, South Korea has rarely lost to Australia.
They won eight straight, starting with the 2007 Baseball World Cup fifth and sixth place games.
However, they were unable to stop Australia’s power at the WBC in March this year, losing 7-8. It had been 16 years since South Korea had lost to Australia since the 2007 World Cup qualifiers. The loss to the Aussies led to a humiliating first-round exit.
While the tournament featured up-and-coming players rather than the elite, it was seen as a chance for Korea to avenge its WBC loss.
This time, they bounced back with a win.
However, they still struggled against Australia.
Moon Dong-ju (Hanwha) did his part with 5⅔ innings of five-hit ball (one home run), five strikeouts, four walks and two runs, but he gave up a solo home run to Woo Woo in the key sixth inning with the score tied 1-1.
The batting lineup was also a big part of the disappointment. Despite collecting eight hits and committing three errors, they only managed to score two runs in the ninth inning.
Trailing 0-1 in the second inning, Kim Hyung-joon (NC) singled with runners on first and second to tie the game, but he was unable to capitalize on a bases-loaded walk by Kim Joo-won. With runners on first and second in the third, first and third in the fifth, and first and second in the seventh, they put their heads down.
Kim Hye-sung (Kiwoom Heroes) and Choi Ji-hoon (SSG Landers), who set the table, went hitless. Yoon Dong-hee (Lotte Giants), the No. 3 hitter, also went hitless in four at-bats.
Despite the frustrating process, it was good to see Noh Si-hwan and Kim Joo-won batting well.
The 2022 Hangzhou Asian Games gold medalist had three hits in five at-bats, including the game-winning hit in the tiebreaker. He also doubled in the fifth inning.
Kim Joo-won, also a member of the Hangzhou gold medal team, hit an RBI single up the middle with the bases loaded in the eighth inning down 1-2.
Kim Do-young, who earned his first senior national team call-up, led off the eighth inning with a double to set the stage for the tying run.
The bullpen, consisting of Kim Young-gyu, Shin Min-hyuk (NC), Choi Ji-min (KIA), Choi Seung-yong, and Jung Hae-young, pitched a scoreless inning.
In particular, Choi Seung-yong, who wore the adult Korean flag for the first time, pitched 1⅔ innings of scoreless relief in the eighth, striking out four.
Jung Hae-young, who came on with runners on second and third in the ninth inning and struck out Hall, also stood out with 1⅓ scoreless innings.
After defeating Australia, South Korea will face Japan on Sunday. Korea suffered a heartbreaking 4-13 loss to Japan at the WBC in March.