Kang Hwon vows to stay strong, thanks away fans for snapping four-game losing streak

After a recent losing streak that has left him feeling frustrated, NC Dinos head coach Kang In-hwa (52) got his team back on track with its best performance since June.

The Dinos won 6-2 against the Hanwha Eagles at Hanwha Life Eagles Park in Daejeon on June 7 in the regular season finale of the 2024 Shinhan SOL Bank KBO League. The win snapped a four-game losing streak for NC. The victory also puts them within 1.5 games of seventh-place Hanwha, who had been chasing them. Their season record now stands at 29 wins, 32 losses, and one draw (0.475 winning percentage).

Things have not been going well for NC lately. Through April, NC had the best record of the season with a +9 win-loss margin. By mid-May, they hadn’t fallen off a cliff and were in second place, trailing the first-place KIA Tigers by one game. However, after a 4-6 loss at Gochuk Kiwoom on May 23, NC dropped a three-game series against LG and a three-game series at home against KIA. NC then lost the first game against Lotte, sending the team to an eight-game losing streak and collapsing its five-game winning percentage.

The NC snapped the eight-game losing streak with a 4-2 victory over Lotte on the first day, but the next day, the team gave up seven runs in the sixth inning alone in a 4-13 loss. The team then dropped all three games against Doosan at home, and lost four straight games again. They have now lost 12 of their last 13 games.

“Overall, the players’ batting pace is off,” Kang said ahead of the game on July 7. “We need to play better in the center field so that the juniors behind us can bat comfortably,” he said, “So I think there’s a bit of urgency in the batting order, and it’s not showing in the results.

“The team as a whole is in a slump, but we still have a lot of games left. If we get one chance to bounce back, we’re confident that we’ll be back to our 먹튀검증 normal form, because we have the potential.”

The game had a special meaning for Kang. It was the first time he would face his mentor, Kim Kyung-moon (66), head coach of the Hanwha Eagles. The two worked together as manager-player and manager-coach at Doosan, and from 2012 to 2014 at NC. “Congratulations are for congratulations, and when I go into the game, I have to show how much I’ve grown, so I think coach (Kim Kyung-moon) will be proud,” Kang said on April 4.

The two met on the field before the game, where Kang bent down to greet Kim and Kim hugged him. “We were on the same team before,” Kim said, “and we know each other well, but a game is a game, so we’ll try to play a good game for the fans of our respective teams.”

The game started off with two runs in the bottom of the second inning. Starter Daniel Castano walked leadoff hitter Ahn Chi-hong, and two batters later, Choi In-ho tripled and Jang Jin-hyeok singled to right to make it 0-2. It looked like it was going to be another bad inning.

However, NC showed a different side in the next inning. In the third inning, Park Min-woo singled and Kwon Hee-dong and Park Gun-woo followed with back-to-back singles to tie the game. In the fourth inning, Kim Joo-won tied the game with 토토사이트 순위 runners on first and third on an infield grounder and then Kwon Hee-dong hit an RBI single to make it 3-2.

NC added another run in the fifth inning when Matt Davidson hit a one-run home run with an incredible trajectory of 46 degrees launch angle and 176.1 mph. Davidson followed with a two-run shot to left-center off left-hander Kim Ki-joong after Park Gun-woo singled in the top of the seventh inning, his first back-to-back home runs in a month after hitting one against KT in Suwon on May 8.

After Castano went down after allowing two runs on seven hits and three walks with four strikeouts in six innings, NC used Kim Jae-yeol (seventh), Kim Young-gyu (eighth), and Lee Yong-chan (ninth) to hold on to the lead and secure the win.
On this day, Kang also made bold mercenary moves. He replaced left fielder Son Asub, who had a shaky defense in the early innings, with Kim Sung-wook at the end of the fifth inning, and replaced Do Tae-hoon, who committed an error in the seventh inning, with a pinch-hitter. Do Tae-hoon followed up his hit with a diving catch of Choi Jae-hoon’s line drive in the bottom of the eighth inning.

After the game, Kang gave credit to Castano, who pitched six innings of two-run ball, and Davidson’s back-to-back home runs were decisive in the victory. “I would like to thank the fans for their support during the away game,” he said.

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