Korea Postgame Interview March 4

THE MODERATOR: We have the manager and starting pitcher for Korea. First question for the manager, your guys came back very well tonight. Give us your thoughts regarding tonight's game.

JOONG IL RYU: First of all, our starting pitcher set a very good environment for us, and the following pitchers did a very good job, and then they showed very good pitching today. And the batters were kind of slowed down before, but now they were alive. Seung Yuop Lee was very good at the beginning, and Hyunsoo Kim did very good batting at the beginning of today's game, so it was very good. But what is missing today is that we wanted a big scoring margin today, but it was not very big as our expectations.

Q. Before it was said that the offense wasn't really good because they are not used to the weather and food in Taiwan. That's why Korea is not performing well against Netherlands. Is that the issue that you're facing, food and weather?

JOONG IL RYU: We don't think so. About the food, of course the food is not suitable for us compared to Korean food, but we ate Korean food, so we are having good food here. The weather is a bit chilly here, but we usually see this kind of weather in Korea, as well. The four hour game against Netherlands, we did our best, but due to not good enough condition of our players, we saw that kind of result, but I see that the condition of our players are better now.

Q. My question is to the manager: After seeing two games of Chinese Taipei, what makes you feel impressed and what do you think will be the key concern against Chinese Taipei tomorrow?

JOONG IL RYU: We had our first game with Netherlands, so at the worst scenario, if we didn't win for the game tomorrow, we may not be able to go on. But anyway, we will need to see the game between the Netherlands and Australia, and I believe that we need to have another big scoring margin in our game against Taiwan. So we will need to talk about it further, and we will make up a strategy for tomorrow.

Q. So what do you think about today's game?

JOONG IL RYU: I don't feel very special right now. We need to win, and tomorrow's game, and if we win and if we can go to the second round, this game would be very meaningful for us. However, I think it's not enough for us to smile right now, so tomorrow's game is very important, so we will forget about today's game as soon as possible so that we can make a big scoring margin in tomorrow's game.

Q. To the pitcher: We saw today's game and then your score was similar to the previous ones, but I think that your velocity was not very similar to the previous one, so how do you think about the pitching?

SEUNG SONG: I'm not sure if the fastball velocity was not good. I couldn't check my velocity every single time. But as a matter of fact when I was on the mound I found some difficulties, so in every single time I thought about the Asia tournament that I participated in last year, and it was helpful for me. Minho Kang led me very well in today's game, so I think that was a very good cause for my good pitching today.

Q. So in the two games and the exhibition games, Keunwoo Jeong's condition was not very good, and then there was a double play and there was a ground ball, and we lost some of the opportunities. Do you have any plan to use Keunwoo Jeong for the further games?

JOONG IL RYU: Keunwoo Jeong is one of the best players in Korea, and he now plays in Japan. I'm sure that he will make a good result someday, so I will keep pushing him and support him.

Q. What were you trying to do coming into this game starting for the first time in this tournament?

SEUNG SONG: Well, when my country calls me, then it is certain that I should participate as a player, and I believe that this is the last opportunity for me to put the Korean flag on my chest, so I wanted to help out my country's team. That is why I came here.

Q. You did not participate in the first you came as relief, but you came now to participate in the second game. How did you feel?

JOONG IL RYU: Well, the atmosphere within our team after the first game was not very bad because we had two more games left, so we did our best, of course. If we would not be able to move on to the second round because of the two next games, then the atmosphere would be down. However, we were not like that after the first game, and then now we had the second game, and then now it is our assignment to think how we can play in the next game to move on to the second round.

Q. So the pitchers have some difficulties about the strike zone, so could you advise your players about the strike zone as you're not going to be in the next game?

SEUNG SONG: Well, there was a ball one of my pitching that I thought was a strike was considered to be a ball, so I asked the umpire about that, and he explained, so I just accepted it and then I just went on. And then when I came off from the mound, I said, you need to be careful about the strike zone because the umpire is very strict about the strike zone. And the next pitchers did very well when it comes to controlling the strike zone, so we were very good after that.

I believe that all the players must be accustomed to the strict strike zone so that we can lead better games.

Q. To the manager: So I believe that there may be some variables in tomorrow's game, maybe the crowd from the Taiwanese fans. How would you respond to it?

JOONG IL RYU: The Chinese Taipei team is now playing in their home ground, so we need to be careful, of course, and we have some experience playing baseball games in Jamsil, which is our home ground, so we will not be shaken by cheering from the Taiwanese fans. I don't know how the game will go on tomorrow, but we will do our best.

Q. I heard that Taehyon Chong will be a starting pitcher. Why did you choose him as a starting pitcher for tomorrow?

JOONG IL RYU: Taehyon Chong will be the starting pitcher tomorrow, and I have chosen about five candidates for the starting pitchers, and Taehyon Chong has shown very good performance until now. I heard that there are many good pitchers and players in Chinese Taipei team, as well, so I will choose him as the first one, and after that I will think about the second and third pitchers.

Q. I heard from the Chinese Taipei team that will be a left handed starting pitcher. Do you have any plan to change the lineup for tomorrow?

JOONG IL RYU: We don't consider whether the pitcher will be the left hander or right hander. Our lineup is very good with the left handed pitcher, as well, so we will need to think about it tomorrow morning, and then we may think about changing the batting order tomorrow morning or not.

Q. I want to ask a question to both of you, so compared to the Netherlands game, there were many cheering crowds from Korea, cheerleaders, and you heard some of the cheerful songs that you have listened to before. Do you think that will be helpful for you for tomorrow?

JOONG IL RYU: Of course they will be helpful. They have come all the way to Taiwan, which they are not used to, and we thank our fans very much for their effort and cheers. We will do our best as our players, and then we will not be able to win tomorrow's game only by the force or power of our players. If you cheer for us, Korean people, through TV and at the ballpark, we will get energy from you, and we will be the hope of our nation, and we will do our best to lead a very good game.

SEUNG SONG: During the first inning I heard my Korean people cheering out my name, so I could feel the energy was going up inside my heart, so I thought that I had to play a very good game to give them back my appreciation. So I hope that I could hear the cheering words from Korean fans, not only here but also in Tokyo Dome and in San Francisco. I will do my best to do that.