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Key bats out of Korean Series lineups with injury, slump

13:43 November 21, 2020

By Yoo Jee-ho

SEOUL, Nov. 21 (Yonhap) -- Two key players will be held out of their respective lineups in a crucial Game 4 of the Korean Series on Saturday.

The Doosan Bears, which are leading the NC Dinos 2-1, will be without outfielder Park Kun-woo. He is batting just 1-for-12 in three games this series.

Park Kun-woo of the Doosan Bears hits an RBI groundout against the NC Dinos in the bottom of the second inning of Game 3 of the Korean Series at Gocheok Sky Dome in Seoul on Nov. 20, 2020. (Yonhap)

"I think he's hurting inside," Doosan manager Kim Tae-hyoung said in his pregame media session at Gocheok Sky Dome in Seoul. "It breaks my heart too."

Reserve outfielder Jo Soo-haeng will take Park's spot and start in right field. Jo entered Friday's Game 3 as a defensive replacement for left fielder Kim Jae-hwan in the ninth inning and made an outstanding catch at the wall in foul territory to record the first out and help the Bears close out a 7-6 win.

"Jo is our steadiest defender, and he can really put the ball in play," the manager said. "Park Kun-woo (who bats right-handed) could pinch hit against a left-handed reliever. I think he'd be better off waiting on the bench now, rather than going out there and play every day."

The Dinos made a few lineup changes. Third baseman Park Sok-min is out after jamming his left middle finger on a slide during the fourth inning of Game 3. Chi Seok-hoon, who replaced Park during that game, will start at third base Saturday.

Left fielder Kwon Hui-dong is out of the lineup for the first time this series, and Lee Myung-ki, who had been the designated hitter in the first two games, will take over in left. Mo Chang-min will be the DH.

"Mo is a veteran, and he is swinging the bat well," NC manager Lee Dong-wook said. Mo had a base hit in his only plate appearance Friday. "We need him to put his experience to good use today."

Park Sok-min of the NC Dinos slides into second base against the Doosan Bears in the top of the third inning of Game 3 of the Korean Series at Gocheok Sky Dome in Seoul on Nov. 20, 2020. (Yonhap)

jeeho@yna.co.kr
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