SUWON, South Korea — In a dramatic mid-season reversal, the KT Wiz baseball team climbed from last place in the Korea Baseball Organization to finish the regular season in second place. The team has now earned a bye to the second round of the postseason, set to begin Monday against the NC Dinos.
According to Yonhap News Agency, the team attributes their turn of fortune to a strong second-half performance, which silenced skeptics and set them on a course for the postseason. Team captain Park Kyung-su expressed a lack of pressure ahead of the postseason games, given how the team has outperformed expectations.
In a pregame media event, Park said, "It's been a miracle of a season. So we're not feeling any pressure. I think we're ready to enjoy the experience here. But at the same time, we want to pounce on this opportunity because we worked so hard to grab it."
Due to peculiarities in the schedule, the KT Wiz finished their regular season on Oct. 10, allowing for a 20-day hiatus before their postseason debut. Concerns have been raised over whether the extended break might have led to rust, but Park dispelled such worries. "We tried to replicate the atmosphere the best we could. We should be fine," he said.
Known for his defensive prowess, Park won the Korean Series MVP award in 2021 and emphasized his focus on strong defense heading into the postseason. While acknowledging his offensive statistics are not his strong suit, Park stressed, "I know the team counts on me to play strong defense."
The KT Wiz, who are in their fourth consecutive postseason, have largely retained their core team. Park believes the experience will serve the team well, especially for younger players. "All those years of playing postseason ball will prove to be great assets for them," he concluded.