“You were so strong in the three-game series against LG.” Leading off the final at-bat with a 4-hit, 3-RBI sweep right after the manager’s exit, “I just want to win.”
On the 27th, the NC-LG game was held at Changwon NC Park.
For the second day in a row, a strange scene took place. NC coach Kang Myung-hwa was ejected for protesting the video review.
LG attacked in the third inning, trailing 0-1.
One out later, Park Hae-min and Hong Chang-ki singled to put runners on first and third. Shin Min-jae hit a ball that went behind the second baseman.
Second baseman Park Min-woo makes the catch in backward motion.
Park Hae-min, third baseman, bunt. He headed for home. Judging that the throw home was late, Park Min-woo threw to first base to catch the overrun first baseman, Hong Chang-ki, for the out.
The inning was over, and all the players returned to the dugout.
The problem came next. When the run was disallowed, an appeal was made from the LG bench. They argued that Park Hae-min had crossed the plate before the ball reached first base, so the run should be awarded.
The umpires agreed and awarded the goal to LG. Tied 1-1.
The NC bench was agitated. NC coach Kang Myung-hwa came out and made an appeal.
His logic was, “Why did they suddenly recognize the goal after LG’s appeal? The referees advised NC to have a video review.
In the end, NC requested a video review, but the result was safe with no change. Coach Kang came out again and demanded an explanation. He claimed that the call was overturned due to LG’s protest.
However, the umpires decided that the video review was a protest and sent Kang home. The game was suspended for more than five minutes as hitting coach Song Ji-won and others continued to voice their frustrations.
After twists and turns, the game resumed.
There was a player who was watching the situation closely. It was NC infielder Park Min-woo (30). As a dugout leader, he led his teammates to show more determination. Together with leadoff man Son, he combined for seven hits, three RBIs, and four runs scored in the 5-3 victory. While Son laid down the law with a 4-for-3, four RBI performance, Park Min-woo came through with a 5-for-4, three RBI performance.
His performance in the bottom of the third inning, when the score was tied 1-1, stood out. Right after Kang Myung-ho was ejected.
It was an important offense for NC. Son As-seop led off with a single to left, and Park Min-woo doubled to put runners on second and third. In the third, Yoon Hyung-jun hit a sacrifice fly to regain the lead at 2-1, which would prove to be the final score.
With a 2-1 lead, Park Min-woo came through in the fourth inning.
With runners on first and second, Ahn Jung-yeol’s bunt put runners on third and first. Ahn was replaced after complaining of right adductor pain. Two on, two out. The game could have gone south. With runners on first and second after Son As-seob walked, Park Min-woo pushed Baek Seung-hyun’s 147-kilometer fastball over the left-field fence for a two-run double. 4-1. It was a decisive hit that perfectly controlled the early atmosphere.
It wasn’t the end.
After LG pulled within one run (2-4) in the top of the sixth inning on Austin’s RBI double with runners on first and second, Park Min-woo immediately extended the lead back to three runs (5-2) in the bottom of the sixth inning by lining a 150-kilometer pitch from Jung Woo-young to right field on a full count.
Park Min-woo, who led the offense to victory, said.
“In a chaotic atmosphere with the manager leaving the game, I had only one thing on my mind: to win. I think the younger players were able to win because they didn’t get agitated and played their game well. In fact, the atmosphere in this three-game series was a little bit tough, and the players felt it as well. It felt like we were getting caught up in it a little bit, and I think the infielders got together when the pitcher changed and told us to focus more.”
He also shined on defense, especially communicating constantly with starter Choi Sung-young to help him get the first out of the second half.
“I actually just tried to calm him down. When he gets excited and in a crunch, the tempo gets faster and he can’t throw at his own pace, so I tried to cut him off one by one. When there was a little bit of a gap in the score, I said, ‘Let’s just give him a line drive and get the hitter.’ Defense is something that shouldn’t have any ups and downs, so I’m trying to practice and focus a lot.”
Park Min-woo was perfect at the plate.
He took advantage of the pitcher’s timing perfectly, stealing third and third base in the third inning and second base in the sixth inning.
He now ranks fifth in the league with 21 stolen bases. No greed.
“I think I’ve lost a lot of speed to run as fast as I did as a rookie, and now I think I’ve gotten a little bit of a knack for it, but I saw a little bit of timing, so I ran, but I think it’s a little bit disappointing. If I had thought about the stolen base champion from the beginning of the season, I would have run a little more, but I think it’s a little bit disappointing, because I only finished second in stolen bases twice (laughs).”
Despite what he says, Park Min-woo doesn’t have much ambition this season. His only desire is to play his first fall baseball at Changwon NC Park.먹튀검증
“I don’t have any personal goals this year. It’s the first year of my long-term contract, so I just want to play all the remaining games this year and get the team to fall baseball and play my first postseason here (NC Park), I really do.”