Just a month ago, Lotte was a team that was ‘disregarded’ by nine coaches.
It was at the end of last March. At KBO Media Day, which was held prior to the start of the regular season, managers of 10 clubs were asked to “pick two teams that are likely to meet in fall baseball.” 먹튀검증
The teams that most coaches chose were LG and KT. Since it was not pointing out all the candidates for the top 5, LG and KT, which were evaluated as stable in power, had no choice but to sweep a lot of votes. At the same time, KT coach Lee Kang-cheol made a bold prediction, saying, “I think we will meet Samsung and Hanwha.” There were also coaches who pointed to SSG, who had the honor of winning the first wire-to-wire championship last year, Kiwoom, who finished runner-up in the Korean Series, and KIA, who pulled up in the top 5.
Conversely, the team that suffered ‘0-vote humiliation’ also stood out. Lotte, NC, and Doosan did not name a single manager. It was expected that the probability of advancing to fall baseball, let alone winning, would not be very high.
It’s been a month since the KBO League started. Lotte, which was thoroughly ignored by the coaches of the nine clubs, is causing a stir by taking the sole lead with 14 wins and 8 losses (.636 win rate). NC is also in 4th place with 14 wins and 12 losses, and Doosan is tied for 5th place with 12 wins, 11 losses and 1 draw.
What also catches the eye is the great uprising of Lotte. In fact, there were only a handful of experts who singled out Lotte as a candidate for the quarterfinals. Since advancing to the postseason in 2017, he has never won a ticket to fall baseball, and last year, he stayed in 8th place in the regular season, and the retirement of ‘Legend’ Dae-ho Lee did not receive good reviews.
Even so, how did Lotte jump to the sole lead? In the free agent market, Yoo Gang-nam, Noh Jin-hyuk, and Han Hyun-hee, and in the free-agent market, Ahn Kwon-soo, Kim Sang-soo, Yoon Myeong-jun, Shin Jeong-rak, and Cha Woo-chan were recruited to expand their depth. Pil Seung-jo, including Kim Won-joong, is also firmly guarding the back door. In addition, the quick pitcher change on the bench and the use of a wide range of players using depth also play a role. Of course, it’s only April now. However, Lotte’s unexpected rise is clearly emerging as a major issue heating up the KBO league. So, we are interested in whether Lotte’s upward trend can continue in May.
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