The promise of a ‘genius shortstop’ who showed class, “We will win both double headers with Samsung.”
Kim Jae-ho, the ‘genius shortstop’ whom the Doosan Bears are proud of, showed the strength of a veteran and led the team to a dramatic come-from-behind victory.메이저놀이터
Doosan, ranked 6th, won 8-7 in the 11th game of the season against Samsung Lions, ranked 8th in the 2023 Shinhan Bank SOL KBO League, held at Jamsil Baseball Stadium in Seoul on the 8th. The 5th place KIA Tigers were caught by the leaders LG Twins and fell into a losing streak, narrowing the gap to 2 games and laying the foundation for advancement to the top 5.
The culprit behind Doosan’s victory was Kim Jae-ho, who started as the second hitter and shortstop. Jae-ho Kim bombarded the Samsung mound with a heavy hit, including 2 hits in 5 at-bats, 1 home run, 3 RBIs, and 1 run.
Kim Jae-ho had a thrilling experience at the bottom of the 5th inning when Doosan was tied 2-2 with one out and runners on first base. He hit a 2-run home run against Samsung starting pitcher Kim Dae-woo, who was struggling, to make the score 4-2.
In one ball, one strike, Kim Dae-woo’s third pitch, a 121km curve, was hit with a perfect swing and the ball flew 116m over the left wall. After hitting his second home run of the season against Kiwoom Heroes on the 24th of last month, he hit a home run in two weeks.
Kim Jae-ho’s performance continued. In the bottom of the 8th inning, when Doosan was trailing 6-8, he hit a 1-run double with 1 out, 1st and 2nd base, and narrowed the score gap to 6-7 with multiple hits.
Later, in the bottom of the 9th inning when the team was down 7-8, Doosan achieved a thrilling 8-7 walk-off victory thanks to Kang Seung-ho’s dramatic timely hit to tie the game with one out and runners on second base, and Samsung third baseman Ryu Ji-hyuk’s catching error when Park Gye-beom’s infield grounder with one out and runners on first and second base. Kim Jae-ho’s two-run home run and double laid the foundation for a dramatic victory.
Jae-ho Kim also dominated the game on defense. In the top of the 7th inning, when Doosan was down 5-6, with one out and runners on second and third base, he caught Lee Jae-hyun’s difficult infield ground ball and quickly turned it into a home throw, preventing third base runner Kang Han-wool from scoring. It was a valuable defense that cut off the flow of Samsung’s attack and created room for Doosan to counterattack.
With the win against Samsung on the 8th, Doosan was able to prepare for the double header on the 9th with a lighter mind. The success of chasing down KIA for 5th place is also a result of securing the momentum to continue the fight for the top 5.
After the game, Kim Jae-ho said, “It was a really tough game, but I’m glad I won. The young players did their part at the end and we were able to win.” He continued, “In the home run situation in the bottom of the 5th inning, the two balls in front were fastballs, so I was confident that a breaking ball would come in. “I turned it around and it seems like the timing was right and it went away,” he said.
He also explained, “The defense in the top of the 7th inning was in a forward defense situation, so the bounce of the batted ball was high. I made a strong throw, thinking that the half-timer was throwing quickly, but catcher Jang Seung-hyeon handled it well.”
He didn’t forget to greet the home fans. He promised, “We won thanks to the many fans who came and supported us until the end. We will focus on the double header on the 10th and bring victory to everyone.”
Doosan coach Lee Seung-yeop praised the most senior fielder who led the team to victory, saying, “Kim Jae-ho recorded an RBI at every opportunity.”