NC Dinos “ace” Eric Peddie, 30, is embroiled in a batting controversy, but Peddie is not the kind of pitcher who turns his back on his team in tears over a loss. It was a far cry from the pitcher who turned his back on his team with a tackle.
NC lost 2-3 against KT Wiz in the fifth game of the 2023 Shinhan Bank SOL KBO League Playoffs (PO-5 best-of-three) at KT Wiz Park in Suwon on Friday afternoon. With the loss, NC fell to 2-3 in the PO and failed to advance to the Korean Series. For the third time in history, they lost three straight games after winning two PO games.
The starting pitcher for NC was Shin Min-hyuk. Pedi was initially expected to start Game 5. Pedi has been the best pitcher in the KBO this season, leading the league in wins (20), ERA (2.00), and strikeouts (209). He also became the first pitcher to reach 200 wins and 200 strikeouts in a season, 37 years after Seon Dong-yeol in 1986.
Pedi was particularly impressive in Game 1 of the PO, pitching six innings of one-run ball to secure the win. He struck out 12 batters to set a new PO record for most strikeouts in a game, and it was a dominant performance. If he could only come through in Game 5 of the POs, he could have given NC a huge boost in their chances of winning. 무지개토토
However, Pedi was unable to start Game 5. After the end of Game 4, manager Kang Myung-ho admitted that Pedi’s physical condition was not yet fully recovered. In the end, Shin Min-hyuk was the starter for Game 5, and Pedi remained on the bench, unable to pitch in the bullpen.
NC led 2-0 until the top of the fifth inning, but Shin Min-hyuk faltered in the bottom of the fifth and gave up two runs, and Ryu Jin-wook gave up a run in the bottom of the sixth to cut the lead to 2-3. They were unable to overcome the one-run deficit and lost. The outcome could have been different if Pedi had pitched in the fifth and sixth innings. But Pedi was not on the mound.
In the aftermath of the game, some people claimed that Peddie was “tapped out”. The theory is that Pedi, who is expected to play in the Major Leagues in 2024, didn’t pitch in Game 5 to protect his body. It’s a plausible scenario if Peddie’s mind is off the KBO.
However, after the game, Pedi burst into tears as he left the stadium. It’s hard to tell if he was disengaged from the KBO and NC. His tears were filled with regret over the loss of the game and his inability to play.