Samsung snapped a three-game losing streak with a 6-3 victory over the Lotte Giants in the fifth game of the 2023 Shinhan Bank SOL KBO League on Tuesday at Samsung Lions Park in Daegu. Samsung improved to 24-31 (.436) on the season.
Oh Jae-il started at first base and batted fifth, going 4-for-5 with a home run and three RBIs in the win. Both the home run and four-hit game were firsts this season. It was the first time in 630 days since September 18, 2021, against the Incheon SSG Landers.
After the game, Oh Jae-il said, “There was a part of the team where the mood sank, and then our hitting coach Park Han-i went down to the second team, so we all got together and said, ‘Let’s start again and not sag. I thought it was going to be a tough game today, but it feels good to win. It’s also nice to have so many good pitches at once after a long time.”
“I swung at a fastball, but I think the slider was a little too close to the middle and got caught in my swing,” Oh said of his home run. “When I have a good feeling, I hit a home run to left field, and I think I’ll get better from now on.”
The home run was even more meaningful because of the record. With his back-to-back home runs, Oh became the 34th player in KBO history to reach the 200-homer plateau. However, Oh expressed his satisfaction with the team’s victory over the record, saying, “I don’t feel good because I don’t care much about it, I just feel good because I hit a good pitch and the team won.”
He also expressed his gratitude to Kang Min-ho. “Before practice, I was hitting balls on the ground by myself, and he helped me practice a little bit. For about three minutes, he put the ball up for me,” he said, adding, “When I hit my first home run, he said it was because of him, but when I hit my second home run, he asked me to deposit it.” 안전놀이터
Finally, Oh Jae-il said, “My confidence dropped a lot because I was stuck in a rut, but the manager and hitting coach kept helping me, and I’m working harder because I feel sorry for myself.” “The manager kept letting me out while believing that my hitting would continue to improve, but I think I need to catch on as quickly as he does and play the role of a center fielder. I’m determined to win one game at a time and I think I’ll be able to set the tone for the team because we have a lot of young players.”