A major disaster averted. The Lotte Giants breathed a sigh of relief.
Lotte will play the first game of a weekend series against the SSG Landers at SSG Landers Field in Incheon on April 16.
The day before, Lotte fans had something to cheer about. During batting practice before the game against the Hanwha Eagles, Noh Jin-hyuk suddenly complained of side pain. As a result, Noh was removed from the first team and Han Dong-hee was added to the first team a day ahead of schedule to undergo magnetic resonance imaging (MRI).
If she suffers a tear in her adductor or side muscle, she will be out for at least a month. Depending on the rehabilitation process, the injury period could snowball. Noh Jin-hyuk is a big free agent with a maximum contract of 4 years and 5 billion won that Lotte signed this season. He was also the team’s best clutch hitter in a team that thrives on chances. All eyes were on his injury.
Fortunately, Noh’s injury was not serious. “Luckily, it’s just a sprain, no torn or ruptured muscles,” head coach Larry Sutton told reporters before the game.
“But he’s going to need time to recover. I’m confident he’ll recover and be back,” he said, adding that when asked if he’d be back in 10 days, “I’m flexible, up to two weeks. Hopefully, he’ll be back in 10-14 days without any major issues.”
Meanwhile, 36-year-old veteran Chung Hoon Jung, who had to leave the game the previous day after complaining of pain after batting second, is thankfully fine and will start at first base in the four-hole. “I felt something in the muscle between my ribs and asked the bench for a change,” Sutton said, “but I have some good news. I checked it after the game yesterday and again this morning and it’s better than it was yesterday. There is no problem for him to play today.”
Lotte is struggling with a 2-8 record in their last 10 games. “We’re playing good baseball,” Sutton said. We’re playing good baseball in terms of the content of the game. We’re not giving up until the end, and even if we’re losing, we’re tying or coming back.”안전놀이터
“We have a lot of injuries, but I’m not going to make excuses. It’s the coaching staff’s job to find replacements and find a way,” he said. “We’re trying to win games. A lot of our success at the beginning of the season came from scoring early and making it easy for ourselves. We’re not doing that well right now.”
He also mentioned Jeon Jun-woo’s two bunt singles and Yoo Kang-nam’s stolen base, saying, “The details and basic mistakes in the game can be overcome through practice. We need to improve the areas that we can control.”