Park Chan-ho made his first start in over a year and Korea couldn't be happier. We even got another bizarre headline from the Korea Times. At least they didn't blame foreigners in this one.
Also, a few pictures from a pretty good brouhaha in the KIA/LG series. At the end there are some killer cheerbabe photos. I love writing about fights at baseball games simply for the chance to use words like "dustup," "imbroglio," "fracas," "tussle," "donnybrook," "melee," and "brouhaha." I've only seen one live in my life. It was the infamous Michael Barrett/A.J. Pierzynski battle of '06. That one featured A.J. destroying Barrett at the plate and Barrett following up with a limp-wristed sucker-punch. Then Scott Podsednik leaping from the on deck circle to tackle Barrett.While Brian Anderson was ready to take on the entire Cubs roster. Ozzie Guillen was not only the first one out of the dugout, but the first one to try to get the situation under control. I still say A.J. hit Barrett harder than Barrett hit A.J.
Doosan vs Samsung
5/16 - Samsung 8, Doosan 3
5/17 - Doosan 11, Samsung 4
5/18 - Rained out :-(
This was probably the best result Lions fans could have hoped for. A split plus a rain delay.
Longtime Samsung OF/1B/DH Yang Jun Hyeok has been demoted to the minor leagues. This could be the beginning of the end for the 39 year old slugger. I believe the move came after Friday's game. I can only imagine how depressing the Korean minors are.
On Friday, the Lions were able to get to a tired Lee Won-jae and a mediocre Doosan bullpen in the late innings. The big hit came from the bat of catcher, Jin Kab-yong in the form of a bases clearing double. Samsung started Lee Sang-mok pitched well enough to earn the W. In his 6 innings(100 pitches, 57 strikes) of work he allowed 3 runs on 7 hits and 3 walks while managing 1 K. Doosan's Ko Yeong-min went 2-4 with a homer, 1 RBI, one run scored and 2 SB's.
I can't believe Samsung used only two pitchers during Saturday's 11-4 shellacking. Samsung starter, Cho Jin-ho only lasted 3 1/3 innings(73 pitches, 46 strikes) in this one. He allowed 7 runs on 8 hits and 3 walks while only striking out one. The big bat belonged to Doosan's Kim Dong-ju. Kim drove in 7(!) RBI while going 3-4 with 2 homers, 3 runs scored and one walk.
Lotte vs. Woori
Cliff Brumbaugh totally loses it with an umpire on Sunday night. To be fair to Cliff, the call was ridiculous. Cliff was getting out the way of some chin music and the umpire claimed he swung. The ump was lucky Cliff didn't tear him in half. In the middle of the dispute, the ump choose to get back in Cliff's face. Cliff's teammates had to restrain the umpire instead of the angry foreigner.
5/16 - Woori 7, Lotte 6
5/17 - Lotte 9, Woori 2
5/18 - Woori 2, Lotte 1 (11)
11 pitchers were used Friday in a 4 hour grindfest. Lotte took a 6-5 lead into the 9th, but closer Im Kyeong-won allowed 2 runs on 3 hits. The knockout punch was a two-run double from Woori's Jeong Seong-hun. Both Lee Dae-ho and Karim Garcia homered for Lotte.
Lotte starter, Jang Won-jun, tossed a complete game on Saturday night. Jang allowed 2 runs on 7 hits and 2 walks while striking out 7 during his 122 pitch(84 strikes) outing. Lotte used some thunder, homeruns from Karim Garcia and Cho Seong-hwan, and lightning, 5 SB's, to beat Woori.
Sunday's game was fairly entertaining. Both offenses didn't seem to like the rainy weather very much, but it was the starting pitching that was the difference. Lotte ace Son Min-han tossed 9 innings(101 pitches, 66 strikes) of 1-run ball allowing only 4 hits and 1 walk while striking out 3. Woori ace Ma Il-yeong did his best to match Son. Ma lasted 8 innings(129 pitches, 74 strikes) allowing 1 run on 4 hits and 3 walks while striking out 6. This was one of the more memorable regular season games and not just because of Brumbaugh's 11th inning blowup. In the 11th, the Heroes got a walk, a hit and then a costly error to score the winning run.
KIA vs. LG
5/16 - KIA 6, LG 4
5/17 - LG 5, KIA 0
5/18 - LG 11, KIA 2
Wow, the two worst teams together again. Let's just say I wasn't exactly glued to my TV set for this one, although we did get a small imbroglio between the two teams. It's always the frustrated teams that lash out. At least these two lashed out against each other.
LG blew Friday's game because they left Chris Oxspring in way too long. He simply ran out of gas in the 7th inning. At least LG was nice enough to mount a fake rally to make the final a little closer. The less said about this game the better.
Saturday night, LG turned to Dr. Bong to get the W and he delivered. Bong Jung-gun tossed 7 1/3(123 pitches, 78 strikes) scoreless allowing only 4 hits and two walks while striking out 7. The Doc was the difference. KIA couldn't do anything offensively and LG pieced together enough of an offense to get the W.
LG scored a 7 inning W on Sunday night. The game was shortened due to miserable weather. It took KIA starter, Lee Beom-seok 75 pitches(!) to throw 2 innings. I would have hung myself. Park Kyung-su was the big hitter for LG. Park went 2-5 with a homer, 3 RBI and one run scored. Just an ugly game from all aspects.
I can't believe over 10,000 people showed up to each of these games. There must be NOTHING to do in Gwangju.
SK vs. Hanhwa
5/16 - SK 7, Hanhwa 3
5/17 - Hanhwa 5, SK 4
5/18 - Rain, rain go away...
Two of Koreas hottest young teams taking the field against each other? That goes a long way to wash the taste of that KIA/LG series out of my mouth.
On Friday, SK struck early and often against Hanhwa starter, Yoo Won-sang. Yoo was chased from the game after only 3 2/3 innings pitched. He allowed 5 runs on 7 hits and 3 walks while striking out 2. The real stand out was the SK bullpen. 5 relievers combined for 4 innings and allowed only 1 run on 4 hits and two walks.
Saturday's game featured Hanhwa's Ryu Hyeon-jin pitching against SK's Kenny Rayborn. Neither pitched particulary well and the game was in the hands of the bullpens. SK's bullpen surrendered a two-run homer to Hanhwa's foreign sensation, Doug Clark. Clark's homer proved to be the difference in Saturday nights game.