The 39-year-old captain, who has a 14-point lead, emphasized the importance of remembering the tough moments in the game.
KT Wiz overcame all odds in the first half of the season to clinch a direct playoff berth in the final game of the regular season. Captain Park Kyung-soo (39), who led the magical season, delivered a poignant message to the team: “Let’s not forget the difficult moments.”
KT Wiz earned a dramatic 5-4 last-gasp victory over the Doosan Bears in the season finale (Game 16) of the 2023 Shinhan Bank SOL KBO League at KT Wiz Park in Suwon on Tuesday.
KT finished the 144-game campaign on a high note, clinching second place in the regular season. They won 79, drew 3 and lost 62. They also finished the season with a dominant 10 wins, 1 draw and 5 losses against Doosan.
Having qualified for the Fall League for the last three years in a row, including the 2021 title, KT was considered a contender for the title alongside LG and SSG ahead of the 2023 season. However, a rash of injuries derailed all of their plans and they fell to the bottom of the standings. Starting with Pil Seung-jo, Kim Min-soo, and Joo Ju-kwon, the team was unable to operate at full strength as key players such as Choi Byeong-dae, Choi Soo-joon, Uhm Sang-baek, 먹튀검증토토사이트 Hwang Jae-gyun, Park Byung-ho, and Choi Jung-ho went down with injuries one after another. In early June, KT’s win-loss margin reached -14.
KT began its rebound with six straight wins, starting on June 3 against Doosan in Suwon. Following a 15-8 record in June (1st place overall), the team went 13-6 in July (3rd place), finally achieving a winning percentage above 5%. Slowly climbing the rankings, KT finally reached No. 2 on August 19 with a win over Hanwha in Daejeon, and remained there for nearly two months, punching their ticket to the playoffs in a thrilling fashion.
Captain Park Kyung-soo helped fuel the second-place finish, batting 2-for-1 with a home run and 12 RBIs in 107 games this season. While his bat didn’t quite live up to expectations, the 39-year-old was still exceptionally steady at the plate, and his soft-spoken leadership in the dugout and clubhouse helped bring the team together. As always, he led by example and served as an inspiration to the rookies and veterans alike.
After the game, Park said, “At the beginning of the season, I felt that it would be difficult, but I think the whole team worked well together and overcame the difficulties. As the captain, I am grateful to all the players. I would also like to thank the manager and the coaching staff for believing in us and watching us closely.”
Park has fond memories of the Korean Series two years ago, when he won his first championship ring and MVP honors. “There’s still fall baseball left, but I want to make sure I don’t forget about the difficulties I had in the bottom half of the season, and I want to make up for the things I lacked and do better in the postseason. I want to win the championship,” he said, expressing strong aspirations for V2.
After completing all 144 games of the 2023 season, KT will have about three weeks of honeyed rest before the first round of the 30-day playoffs (best-of-five).