Samsung Lions veteran catcher Kang Min-ho hit the game-winning home run in the sixth game of the 2023 Shinhan Bank SOL KBO League against the Lotte Giants at Samsung Lions Park in Daegu on Nov. 11.
With two outs in the bottom of the 10th inning, Kang Min-ho took a slider from Lotte pitcher Kim Do-gyu for a two-run home run over the left field fence. The home run gave Samsung a 6-4 victory in extra innings, giving them their second straight win and a sweep of the series.
After the game, Kang Min-ho said, “I met Jae-sung in the bathroom before the inning started, and I jokingly said, ‘I think I’m going to get the chance, but if it comes to me, I want to finish it off,’ and it feels good to finish it off. I hit a walk-off home run at Lotte and I think I hit my first walk-off home run at Samsung,” he laughed.
It wasn’t an easy game. Kang Min-ho didn’t expect Kim Do-gyu to take it easy either.
“I didn’t think it was going to be an easy game. I thought I would have to fight with a changeup rather than a fastball, but it came in the middle, and I didn’t miss it,” he smiled.
“I actually thought it wasn’t going to go to extra innings. In the top of the ninth, my family was waiting downstairs, and then it went to extra innings, so I went 메이저사이트 back up. Of course, it would have been nice to win in the ninth inning, but it means a lot to win in extra innings. I think the team’s mood will go up,” he added.
The Samsung bats have been struggling lately. While they were fine on the 10th and 11th, they struggled in the midweek three-game series against the NC Dinos and the first game of the series against Lotte.
“Jae-il is also struggling, and Pirela is working hard,” Kang Min-ho said. The players are struggling a lot,” he said, “but there are still a lot of games left. It’s important now, but it’s more important in the future. Me, Jae-il, and Pirella will work together more. We’ll do our best to get back into the fight for the top spot.”
The three-game weekend series against Lotte, which was held as the ‘Classic Series’, attracted many fans. 15,893 fans showed up on the 9th, 24,000 on the 10th, the second home sellout of the season, and 18,896 on the 11th. The Samsung players rewarded their home fans with a winning series.
Kang Min-ho said, “The fans’ support really energized me. “In the game on the 10th, I was on second base when Lotte changed pitchers, and I looked at the crowd and felt emotional. I thought, ‘I need to play better baseball,’ and I realized that there are many people who love baseball. I realized that I need to be more responsible. I am very grateful to the fans.”
In conclusion, Kang Min-ho said, “This home run was really lucky, so I feel good. It’s been a tough week, but I think I can rest well by winning the weekend games.”
Meanwhile, Samsung manager Park Jin-man also smiled at Kang’s late home run. “Kang Min-ho gave a great gift to the fans who dyed the Classic Series blue on the weekend with his final home run,” Park said.