온라인바카라The biggest story in the KBO on Monday (3 July) was the removal of veteran outfielder Park Gun-woo (33-NC Dinos) from the first team.
NC removed Park from the first team via a three-day non-baseball roster move. It is not known who will replace Park, but starting pitcher Lee Jun-ho (23) will be called up on the 4th against the Gochuk Kiwoom.
Park’s exclusion from the roster was a surprise, as he appeared in 69 games this season, batting .286 with seven home runs, 41 RBIs, six doubles and an OPS of .816. He spent 93 days on the active roster without being designated for assignment due to nagging injuries early in the season.
In the month of April, Park struggled a bit, batting just .270. However, in May, he turned it up a notch with four consecutive multi-hit games (against Samsung Electronics on the 19th and Lotte on the 23rd). He hasn’t had a major slump since then. His batting average in the last 10 games was 0.286, the same as the entire season.
There were no injuries, nor were there any major issues. An NC official told Star News, “It’s not an injury. It’s clear that he’s not sick. There are no other issues at all.”
This makes Park’s move to the second team even more of a mystery. NC has been on a downward spiral lately. After losing five straight games since the Changwon LG Electronics on the 21st of last month, the NC suffered sweep losses in the recent three-game series against KT Wiz and Suwon. They are now 2-8 in their last 10 games. The team has been steady since taking third place on the 14th of last month, but their win-loss margin, which was once +8, has dropped to +2 as of the 3rd.
In this situation, it is difficult to understand the decision to drop a veteran player who has been contributing to the batting line-up. At this rate, he won’t be back until the last game of the first half (against the Changwon Lotte on the 13th) at the earliest. Especially with NC facing the fourth-place Lotte Giants and sixth-place Kiwoom Heroes, who are currently within three games of each other in six of the remaining nine games before the All-Star break. For a team that needs to finish strong in the first half of the season, it would be risky to leave one of its resources out.Park Gun-woo was also named to the Nanum All-Stars’ Best 12 Outfielders for the 2023 KBO All-Star Game, which will be held at Sajik Baseball Stadium in Busan on the 15th. It will be the first time in five years that he has made the All-Star team since 2018, when he was with the Doosan Bears. NC made him effectively a first-half out with the All-Star Game less than two weeks away.
However, in other words, if the team is willing to drop Park in such a crucial situation, it can be assumed that his removal is indeed necessary. Even if the team needed to break out of their slump as soon as possible, they still wanted to send a message by removing the centre fielder, who is a big part of their power.”We expect manager Kang Myung-ho to mention the reason for the deletion in the game on the 4th,” said an NC official. After all, it was the manager’s decision to change the line-up, so he has to explain it himself. This is why all eyes are on Kang.
Kang is cautious about evaluating players through the media. He recently criticised catcher Park Se-hyuk (33) for his ball placement, only to be told by the player himself that he was “reflecting on it a lot”. However, his charisma allows him to be openly bitter when necessary. The expungement of Park Gun-woo could also be seen as a message of determination.