‘May Crisis? We Overcame It!’ The Giants’ Ace…’6 Innings, 9 Ks’ Na Gyun-An cries over collapsed bullpen

At this point, you can see the ace in the making.

Na Gyun-an of the Lotte Giants started against the Kiwoom Heroes at Gocheok Sky Dome on the 28th and held the Kiwoom bats to five hits and one run until the sixth inning. He also struck out nine.

However, Lotte gave up the game-winning run to Kiwoom’s Lim Ji-yeol in the bottom of the eighth inning. Na Gyun-an’s sixth win of the season will have to wait until next time.

In the first three innings, Lotte had runners in scoring position every time. But now he’s an ace. His ice-cold pitching took the wind out of their sails at every turn.

She struck out the side early on. In the bottom of the first inning, he gave up a double to Kim Hye-sung and a walk to Russell, but he got out of the jam by striking out Lee Jung-hoo and Lim Byung-wook. In the second inning, he gave up a double to Kim Hwijip, but struck out Lee Won-seok, Lee Ji-young, and Lee Hyung-jong.

The third inning was the most critical. Kim Jun-wan singled, Kim Hye-sung walked, and Lee Jung-hoo singled to load the bases.

However, Na Kyun-ahn, who was reborn as an ace먹튀검증, was extraordinary in the crisis. He smashed a 129-kilometer forkball off Russell for a four-run homer. Kim Jun-wan, who came home, was not happy. The next batter, Lim Byung-wook, caught a fly ball in center field.

The 2023 KBO League game between the Kiwoom Heroes and the Lotte Giants was held at the Gocheok Sky Dome on Aug. 28. Lotte’s Na Kyun-ahn catches his breath. Gocheok=Park Jae-man 기자pjm@sportschosun.com/2023.05.28/
After regaining his composure, Na Gyun-ahn retired three straight batters in the fourth and fifth innings. In the sixth inning, he gave up a leadoff single and a stolen base to Lee Jung-hoo, but got out of the jam without allowing a run.

He threw more forkballs (42) than his fastball (39), which topped out at 147 mph, and his only other pitches were cutters (five).

Na’s April was a string of best-pitching performances reminiscent of Barnes and Park’s Aprils last year. He started five games, pitched 33⅔ innings, and picked up four wins. His ERA was just 1.34.

The start of May was shaky. In his first game of May, he gave up five runs in four innings against the KIA Tigers on May 3. Against the Doosan Bears on May 11, he gave up four runs in five innings.

However, he got back on track with 6⅓ innings of one-run ball against the Hanwha Eagles on the 17th and six scoreless innings against the NC Dinos on the 23rd. On this day, Kiwoom also had a shaky start but did not collapse.

The 2023 KBO League game between the Kiwoom Heroes and the Lotte Giants was held at Gocheok Sky Dome on the 28th. Lotte’s Na Kyun-ahn catches his breath. Gocheok = Park Jae-man 기자pjm@sportschosun.com/2023.05.28/
Lotte’s offense was solid with three sacrifice flies, forcing Kiwoom’s Jeong Chan-heon into a 4⅔-inning shutout. However, the trusted bullpen collapsed. With the bases loaded in the bottom of the eighth inning, Yoon Myung-jun gave up a game-winning home run to Kiwoom’s Lim Ji-yeol, and Lotte fell to a 5-7 defeat. Kiwoom snapped a four-game losing streak, but Lotte’s three-game winning streak was snapped.

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