Go to contents

A Sweep or an Upset

Posted October. 25, 2007 03:19,   


Anything is possible in sports.

In the Korean World Series, both Doosan and SK are striving for nothing less than a miracle.

Doosan could be the only team in the 25-year history of Korean pro baseball to sweep its way to the finals. After sweeping Hanwha, Doosan is two wins away from making it into the record books.

In contrast, SK is fighting against an age-old Korean Series myth that no team with 2 straight losses in a series can come from behind for an upset victory. It’s improbable, but not impossible. In Japan, there have been six instances where teams rallied back after two consecutive losses to win the series. In 1989, Yomiuri was down three games to none, but dramatically sealed the series with four consecutive wins.

Immortality for Doosan

Doosan dominated in all aspects of its last game against SK. Doosan proved to be unstoppable against SK, which holds the best record in the regular season.

Doosan won both games at SK’s home stadium, and clearly has a psychological edge.

On October 24, in Game 3, Doosan will start pitcher Kim Myeong-jae, who pitched against SK three times during the regular season and lost once (ERA 8.64). On October 17, in Game 3 against Hanwha, he held the opposition scoreless for two innings.

Gutsy rookie pitcher Lim Tae-hun, and Lee Seung-hak, who experienced a different kind of baseball while growing up overseas, are ready to pitch in future games if necessary.

In Games 1 and 2, Lee Jong-uk and Kim Hyeon-soo played the role of table setters, respectively. They are expected to display what they have proven in the previous two games. Goh Yeong-min has been on fire at the plate with an average of .571, and fans are expecting more offense from him. Another advantage for Doosan is the roaring support it will receive from the home crowd.

After two consecutive losses, coach Kim Seong-geun of SK said, “It’s a series, you have to win four.”

Indeed, there are still signs of life among the SK squad.

Lee Ho-joon, Cho Dong-hwa and Jeong Gyeong-bae all had more than two hits during the team’s two losses, in spite of the fact that they were the first matches in 16 days for SK. Their star slugger Chung Geun-woo was held hitless, however, and Coach Kim said that he is seriously considering rearranging his batting lineup.

SK will have to overcome the towering presence of Daniel Lios if they are to stand a chance against Doosan. He is expected to start in Games 4 and 7, but if necessary, he will step up to the mound at any given time. SK must devise a strategy to contain him.

KBSN sportscaster Lee Jong-do says, “SK must reorganize their batting line-up,” while SBS sportscaster Park Noh-jun says, “Everything hangs in the balance for both teams in Game 3. The first team to score more than two points will secure victory.”