By Jang Hyun-koo and Hong Kyubin Reporter = The Doosan Bears and KIA Tigers extended their winning streaks to nine games and six games with side-by-side upsets.
Doosan defeated SSG 4-1 on Wednesday at SSG Landers Field in Incheon in the first game of the visiting Shinhan Bank SOL KBO League 2023.
With the win, the gap between third-place Doosan and second-place SSG has been reduced to four games after the two teams went on a nine-game winning streak in July.
Doosan’s latest winning streak is its longest since a 10-game winning streak from June 6-16, 2018.
After being hit by a leadoff solo home run by Choo Shin-soo in the top of the first inning, Doosan squandered its chances with two consecutive singles and fell behind 0-1 against SSG starter Kim Kwang-hyun.
But in the seventh inning, Doosan turned the tide by pounding SSG’s second pitcher Moon Seung-won.
Against Moon Seung-won, who came up with the bases loaded, Kang Seung-ho and Jang Seung-hyun hit back-to-back singles to right to put runners on first and third.
Soon after, Cho stole second base to put two runners in scoring position.
Park Joon-young, who had gone 3-for-3 with a home run and three RBIs against Kiwoom Heroes three days earlier to spark an eight-game winning streak, came through with a clutch two-run double that dropped into the left-field corner.
Doosan Yang-ji led off the bottom of the eighth with a solo shot that cleared the left field fence and extended the lead to two runs. Doosan scored a run in the ninth on back-to-back errors by SSG.
Doosan left-hander Brandon Waddell earned his second win in as many starts thanks to timely hitting, while Kim Kwang-hyun took the loss after tossing 6 1/3 scoreless innings.
Doosan closer Hong Gun-hee, a 13-year pro, earned his first 20-save season.
KIA rallied for a 3-2 comeback victory over the Samsung Lions in Anbang, Gwangju, to improve to 6-0 against Samsung this year.
After Kia scored first on Park Chan-ho’s thunderous home run to left field in the third inning, Samsung rallied back to take a 2-1 lead in the fourth on a groundout and Kang Kang-ul’s RBI single that put runners on second and third with nobody out after Koo Ja-rook singled to right and Jose Pirela doubled down the left field line.
Kia regained the lead in the bottom of the fifth inning, capitalizing on a Samsung error.
With runners on first and second, Samsung starting pitcher Won Tae-in threw a ball to second base that was missed by shortstop Lee Jae-hyun, who was on base. It was recorded as a throwing error by Won Tae-in.
In the meantime, Kim Tae-gun scored from second base to tie the game at 2-2, and Choi Hyung-woo’s throw to the plate in the next at-bat gave KIA a 3-2 lead.
With the bases loaded in the top of the ninth inning, KIA’s Jung Hae-young preserved the one-run victory with a super save by getting Kim Dong-jin to ground out to second base.
Kia left-hander Thomas Pannoni, returning from a one-year absence, allowed two runs in four innings in his comeback, while rookie Yoon Young-cheol, who pitched 1⅔ scoreless innings in relief in the fifth, picked up his fifth win.
At the Gocheok Sky Dome in Seoul, KT WIZ defeated the Kiwoom Heroes 4-3.
KT moved up one spot to seventh, while Kiwoom, which has lost six straight, dropped two spots to ninth.
KT took a 2-0 lead in the first inning on a sacrifice fly by Park Byung-ho and a grounder by Jang Jang-woo in a bases-loaded golden opportunity.
Kiwoom scored a run in the bottom of the third on Kim Hye-sung’s RBI single up the middle with runners on first and second and Lee Jung-hoo’s intentional walk, followed by Lim Ji-yeol’s RBI single to left and Kim Woong-bin’s sacrifice fly to make it 3-2.
KT came back in the fifth and sixth innings with two sacrifice flies by Park Byung-ho and Kim Min-hyuk.
Kiwoom tasted bitterness after failing to capitalize on a two-out, bases-loaded opportunity in the bottom of the ninth.
Meanwhile, with runners on first and second with no outs in the top of the ninth, Kiwoom shortstop Shin Jun-woo directly caught KT’s Kang Baek-ho’s fly ball, quickly stepped on second base, and threw out the runner at first base who did not return to complete his first triple play of the season and 81st of his career.
The Hanwha Eagles earned a thrilling 2-1 victory over the top-ranked LG Twins at Jamsil Stadium in Seoul, South Korea, behind a dazzling performance from starting pitcher Moon Dong-ju and a game-winning two-run double from rookie Moon Hyun-bin.
Moon Dong-ju set a new career high for pitches in a single game (108) in his final outing of the first half, earning his sixth win of the season with a stellar 7 1/3 innings of five-hit, five-strikeout, one-run ball.
Moon beat LG starter Casey Kelly with a hard-hit double down the first base line in the top of the first inning to send both runners home.
The deciding run came in the bottom of the eighth.
Moon Dong-joo gave up a single to Moon Bo-kyung, a walk to Park Hae-min, and an infield single to Shin Min-jae, handing the baton to Kim Bum-soo with one out,
Kim Bum-soo got an infield grounder from Hong Chang-ki to trade one run and one out.
Moon walked Moon Sung-joo again to load the bases, and Kim Bum-soo got Kim Hyun-soo to ground out to second base, causing Moon Dong-joo in the dugout to clap enthusiastically.안전놀이터
The NC Dinos, who have been struggling without a closer, pounded out 16 hits, including three home runs, to blow out the Lotte Giants 11-2 in Changwon.
NC moves into a tie for fourth place with Lotte
Kwon Hee-dong drew a 1-1 count in the third inning with a solo shot to left and then blasted a two-run shot to left in the eighth for a 9-1 lead.
Son As-seop hit a three-run homer to right field in the sixth inning, when the score was 2-1.
NC starter Eric Peddy pitched 6 1/3 innings of one-run ball to improve to 12-2 on the season and earn his first win against his former club this year.
Most notably, Peddy tied the all-time record for fewest games (15) with a win against a former club, set by Yang Hyun-jong (KIA) in 2017.