Nuclear-armed Kia to take over ‘No. 4’ spot

The Kia Tigers, who have been on a scary upswing lately, have managed to reclaim fifth place. The Tigers now have their sights set on fourth place.

KIA won 5-2 against the Hanwha Eagles of the 2023 Shinhan Bank Solar KBO League at the Gwangju-Kia Champions Field on April 27. The win, their fourth in a row, moved KIA from sixth to fifth place. The Doosan Bears, who lost a three-game weekend series to the SSG Landers,메이저사이트 dropped to sixth.

KIA has been on fire offensively in the second half of the season, led by a nuclear batting lineup. They are second with a team batting average of 0.297 in the second half and first with an OPS (on-base percentage + slugging percentage) of 0.796.

The batting order has improved. Leadoff hitter Park Chan-ho is leading the offense with a .365 batting average in the second half of the year, while second baseman Kim Do-young (5 stolen bases) has been consistently harassing opponents with his running ability and baseball sense at the plate.

Leading the offense is Na Sung-beom. In the second half of the season, he hit .346 with five home runs, 22 RBIs, and a .986 OPS in 28 games. Joining him in the center field lineup are Choi Hyung-woo (4 home runs, 24 RBIs) and Socrates Brito (5 home runs, 18 RBIs).

Rounding out the cleanup trio are Kim Sun-bin (.316), Lee Woo-seong (.316), Ko Jong-wook (.333), and Kim Tae-gun (.300). All four batters are hitting .300 in the second half of the season.

Even during the winning streak, KIA’s bats haven’t cooled off, totaling 28 runs in the four games to secure the victory. Choi Hyung-woo is batting .467 (15-for-7) with one home run and seven RBIs, while Park Chan-ho is batting .353 (17-for-6) with four RBIs. Na Sung-beom supported with a .353 (17-for-6), three-RBI performance.

Coincidentally, KIA will play a three-game home series against their immediate competitors, the NC Dinos, starting on the 29th. They have two games in hand on fourth-place NC. If they sweep this three-game series, they will leapfrog NC into fourth place. A sweep of the three-game series would also be a satisfying result, as it would reduce the gap to one game.

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