He expressed his gratitude to his home team of six years. He was warmly welcomed by the fans, but he expressed his determination not to miss the opportunity he got through the trade. Lee Ho-yeon (28), wearing a KT Wiz jersey, scored the winning run in his first game against his parent team.안전놀이터
KT extended its winning streak to three games with a 4-1 victory over the Lotte Giants at Sajik Stadium in Busan on 6 June. They improved to 19-30-2 on the season and moved into a tie for ninth place with Hanwha.
Along with starter Ko Young-pyo’s seven innings of four-hit ball on 87 pitches with one walk and three strikeouts, the offence’s cohesion was on full display, with infielder Lee Ho-yeon, who left Lotte in a one-for-one trade for left-hander Shim Jae-min on May 19 and is now wearing a KT uniform, driving in the winning run with a leadoff single.
Lee first donned the Lotte jersey when he was selected in the sixth round of the 2018 KBO Draft. He was given his chance in earnest after completing his military service and steadily received opportunities as an infield utility player under manager Larry Sutton. This year, however, he was batting .440 in the second team but was unable to hold down a spot and was given a new opportunity with KT.
Lee, who started at second base in the No. 7 spot, took advantage of the opportunity in his first at-bat. In the top of the second inning, he came to bat with runners on first and second. Before stepping up to the plate, Lee bowed to the fans in the dugout and towards first base. The Lotte fans, who had been applauding since Lee’s name was called, greeted the six-year player with even more applause.
Lee was asked to bunt, but his first attempt was fouled off, so he set his bat again. He picked off the second pitch and fouled off the third. With one ball and two strikes, Lee was working against the count, but he stayed focused and lined a four-pitch 147km fastball from Park Se-woong for a clean hit to centre field. It was enough to bring home the runner from second base. After taking a 1-0 lead, KT followed up with a sacrifice fly to right field to make it 2-0.
On the mound, Ko Young-pyo was turning the ‘nemesis’ Lotte batters like leaves in the wind, and the game was going smoothly. They gave up a run in the bottom of the sixth to cut the deficit to 2-1, but scored a run in the top of the seventh.
In the process, Lee Ho-yeon played a key role. In the top of the seventh, Hwang Jae-gyun led off with a single to right before being hit by a pitch to put runners on first and second with no outs. Kim Min-hyuk’s pushing single later gave KT an extra run, which proved to be the decisive point.
After the game, Lee Ho-yeon said, “I came to Sasik for the first time after transferring to KT through a trade. Coming to my hometown team made me want to do well. I was more excited than nervous,” he said, adding, “It would be nice to get a lot of hits and score runs, but I tried not to be greedy and take my shots accurately. I was lucky to get a good pitch and it turned out to be the winning run. It feels great for the team to win,” he said of his game-winning hit against his hometown team.