Doosan coach Lee Seung-yup
leads rebound "The second half is the real fight"
Doosan jumps to 3rd with 9th straight win at end of first half Coach Lee Seung-yup: "We need to raise our goals and catch the teams ahead of us." 9-game winning streak after the start of the second half is important
"We have to go up one step at a time."
Lee Seung-yeop, 47, who is leading the Doosan Bears' charge, has his eyes set on "higher ground" for the second half of the season.
"The second half is the real fight," Lee said on the last day of the All-Star break at Jamsil Stadium. Now we need to raise our goal to the next level and go step by step to catch the teams ahead of us."
Doosan entered the All-Star break in the best possible mood.
After flying under the radar until midway through the season, Doosan turned things around with a nine-game winning streak at the end of the first half. The team's second half performance has also garnered a lot of attention, as they moved up to third place (42-1-36), threatening the LG Twins (49-2-30) and SSG Landers (46-1-32).
"We actually didn't expect to finish third. We didn't even fight at full strength until June, so we were aiming for a 5% win rate. Our win-loss margin went down to '-3'," he recalled.
Doosan released Dylan Pyle, who was struggling with a series of injuries, and brought in Brandon Waddell to bolster the mound, and sent the struggling Jose Rojas to the second team to give him time to rebuild.
With a new lineup, Doosan won all nine of its games in July, surpassing its goal of a +6 win/loss margin.
Now comes the more important time. With postseason tickets on the line, the teams will be in a much more intense race in the second half of the season.
"You have to aim high," Lee said. We shouldn't lose to strong teams," Lee said, adding, "We should focus a little bit on the first nine games (after the start of the second half)."
Doosan will start the second half with a three-game series against the KIA Tigers (Nov. 21-23), followed by the Lotte Giants (Nov. 25-27) and LG Twins (Nov. 28-30). LG has the edge against Doosan with a 6-2 record, while KIA and Lotte are battling it out in the middle of the pack.
"The next nine games are very important, as they can determine whether we go back to the beginning of the season or continue the momentum we had at the end of the first half," Lee emphasized.
Doosan will look to extend its winning streak to 10 games at the start of the second half. A 10-game winning streak is the club's longest winning streak, which was achieved in 2000 and 2018.
If Doosan wins 10 in a row, Lee, a "rookie manager," will tie the record for the longest winning streak in a debut season for a Bears manager and the longest winning streak for a domestic manager in the KBO.
"It's not about being greedy. I'm just going to go with the flow," Lee said. "I'm not going to put pressure on myself to win a streak, I'm just going to try to win one game. It's better to have two wins than one, better to have five wins than two, so we'll try to win one more game," he said.
"If it comes down to a shootout, 토토사이트 we'll try to play more aggressively to be a stronger team than we were in the first half," he continued.