In pitching all five games of a tight series in his first Korea Baseball Organization (KBO) postseason, KT Wiz reliever Son Dong-hyun showcased the mettle of someone who’s been there and done that.Son pieced together seven shutout innings in five games against the NC Dinos in the second round, helping the Wiz rally from a 2-0 series deficit to win the best-of-five battle in five games. They are now off to the Korean Series, the KBO’s version of the World Series, starting Tuesday.Son’s masterpiece came Sunday in the Wiz’s 3-2 win in the deciding Game 5 at KT Wiz Park in Suwon, just south of Seoul. Son got the call earlier than expected — in the top of the sixth inning of a 2-2 game and with starter Wes Benjamin pitching relatively well.
Benjamin had given up a leadoff single and threw a ball to Kwon Hui-dong. Wiz manager Lee Kang-chul wasted no time in getting to the bullpen right there and then. And Son, who has been in Lee’s circle of trust this fall, rose to the challenge.Kwon put down a sacrifice bunt, but Son retired the next two batters to kill that Dinos rally. The right-hander came back out for the seventh, and got two quick outs before giving up a double to leadoff man Son Ah-seop. The hit amounted to nothing, as Son Dong-hyun got Seo Ho-cheol to fly out to right field.Two other relievers, Park Yeong-hyun and Kim Jae-yoon, finished the job, and Son was credited with the win after the Wiz scored the go-ahead run in the bottom sixth.Son, 22, enjoyed his best regular season to date this year, going 8-5 with career highs of 15 holds in 73 2/3 innings. And five games into his first run through the postseason, Son has justified manager Lee’s trust.
Son earned 39 out of 71 votes cast by media to earn his series MVP award, but said he never expected to be so honored. “Honestly, I was just hoping we would win this game and the series,” Son said with a smile. “I was so nervous last night I barely got any sleep. It feels like a dream that we’re going to the Korean Series.”Son said he has no physical issues to speak of, even after throwing seven, mostly high-stress, innings over the past seven days.”I am just happy I could help the team at least a little bit,” Son said. “My body felt a little tight after we lost the first two games. But once we started winning, I didn’t feel any pain at all. I wanted to keep pitching.”In an indication of his unflappable nature, Son said he wasn’t nervous about entering the game with a runner on.”I didn’t feel any pressure not to give up runs, because I knew there were a lot of innings left,” Son said. “And plus, I didn’t think I 슬롯게이밍 was going to allow any runs