Pitchers ruled the day on Saturday. All of these games were 0-0 into at least the fourth inning. I also think this might be the most talented group of non-Korean ballplayers the KBO has ever seen. We may not see the imfamous "plane ticket of shame," for a while this year.
Doosan 4, LG 0
W - Dustin Nippert (1-0), L - Radhames Liz (0-1), S - Lim Tae-hoon (1)
Doosan HR - Kim Dong-ju (1), Kim Hyeon-su (1)
Doosan starter Dustin Nippert threw five innings(78 pitches, 49 strikes) of shut out baseball in his regular season debut. Nippert allowed only three hits and two walks while striking out two.
LG starter Radhames Liz threw well enough, but gave up a couple solo homers and was knocked around for a few one-run rallies. Liz threw six innings(98 pitches, 59 strikes) and gave up all four Doosan runs. He gave up four hits, two walks and a hit batsman while striking out four.
SK 2, Nexen 0
W - Song Eun-beom (1-0), L - Brandon Knight, S - Jeong Dae-hyeon
SK HR - None Nexen HR - None
SK pitching limited the Nexen offense to only three hits and two walks. SK starter Gary Glover threw six innings(101 pitches, 61 strikes) of shutout baseball. The Glove allowed only two hits and a walk while striking out five.
Glover didn't figure in the decision because Nexen starter Brandon Knight was equally impressive. Knight tossed seven innings(109 pitches, 70 strikes) of one-run ball. Knight gave up four hits and one walk while striking out six.
SK broke through in the seventh inning with an RBI single from center fielder Kim Kang-min. SK added an insurance run in the eighth on another RBI single from second baseman Jeong Geun-woo.
Samsung 6, KIA 2 W - Lim Hyeon-joon (1-0), L - Yoon Seok-min (0-1), S - Oh Seung-hwan (1)
Samsung HR - Chae Tae-in (1) KIA HR - None
KIA ace Yoon Seok-min was absolutely cruising until he ran out of gas in the eighth inning. Yoon struck out eight batters and shut the Lions out until starting the eighth. With one run already in, KIA was nursing a slim 2-1 lead. Yoon was lifter for reliever Kwak Jeong-cheol. Kwak loaded the bases for Samsung first baseman Chae Tae-in. Chae clubbed a grand slam over the right field fence to give Samsung a 5-2 advantage. Samsung added an insurance run on a Shin Myeon-cheol RBI single later in the inning.
Samsung closer Oh Seung-hwan recorded a four out save to end the game. It was good to see Oh healthy and throwing strikes...for now. He did make things interesting by walking a pair and giving up a hit, but he was able to escape without KIA inflicting any real damage.
Lotte 6, Hanhwa 0
W - Bryan Corey (1-0), L - Ryu Hyeon-jin (0-1)
Lotte HR - Lee Dae-ho (1) Hanhwa HR - None
It was Lotte starter Bryan Corey that looked like the staff ace and Hanhwas' Ryu Hyeon-jin that looked like the guy making his KBO debut.
Corey threw seven shutout innings(97 pitches, 65 strikes) and only allowed seven hits and zero walks. Corey struck out seven Eagles during his start. Ryu Hyeon-jin had a tough time with the Lotte lineup. Ryu cruised through the first three, but struggled in the fourth and found himself chased from the game by the fifth. Ryu threw 4 1/3 innings(102 pitches, 56 strikes) and gave up five runs. Ryu allowed eight hits and five walks while striking out five.
2010 MVP Lee Dae-ho clubbed a solo homer off of Ryu before Ryu made his exit. Lee took a few seconds to watch it leave and then signal to his teammates that he had, in fact, hit his first homer of the season. Let's act like we've been there before Mr. MVP.