Second-year infielder Kim Do-young (20-KIA Tigers) will bat second in the lineup for Korea’s second game of the Asian Professional Baseball Championship (APBC) 2023 qualifier against Japan on Sunday. Speaking to the media ahead of the game at the Tokyo Dome in Tokyo, Japan, Ryu Jung-il explained that the lineup was centered around right-handed batsmen as Japan’s starter is left-hander Chihiro Sumida (Seibu Lions). As a result, left-hander Choi Ji-hoon (SSG Landers), who batted second against Australia the previous day, was moved to the ninth spot. Kim Do-young, who batted sixth against Australia, will bat second against Japan.
Kim batted leadoff in the bottom of the eighth inning against Australia on Saturday and hit a two-run double to break a 2-2 tie. The designated hitter is Moon Hyun-bin (Hanwha Eagles), who hit .308-104 with 32 RBIs against left-handers in 2023. His average against right-handers was .244 (67-for-275).Japan also added a right-hander to target South Korea’s starter, left-hander Lee Yi-ri.Ryu kept the lineup from the previous day’s game against Chinese Taipei, batting 1-8, but switched the No. 9 spot from left-hander Akihiro Yuto to right-hander Yuki Nomura .As for Lee, Ryu was hopeful that he would pitch well in Tokyo Dome, as he had seen it during the World Baseball Classic (WBC) in March.
“Yesterday, Moon Dong-joo didn’t get his pitches in the first inning, so that’s probably one of the reasons (he wasn’t able to adjust),” Ryu said, noting that the Tokyo Dome mound is a little higher. He’s pitched before, so he should be better.” As for Lee’s innings pitched, he said, “I’ll go as long as I can. We have to prepare for tomorrow’s game against Taiwan…” He added, “If it’s bad early in the game, another starter will come in, and if we’re winning after the fifth inning, the closer will come in. “This means that Lee won’t use up his bullpen if the game gets out of hand.South Korea (1 win) can beat Japan (1 win) later in the day to cross the ninth division ridge into the final. The third and final game of the preliminary round against Chinese Taipei will 스포츠토토존 be played at 7 p.m. on Aug. 18.