Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Samsung 2, SK 0

Samsung leads the series, 1-0

W - Cha Woo-chan (1-0), L - Goh Hyo-joon (0-1), S - Oh Seung-hwan (1)
Samsung HR - None
SK HR - None

The Lions didn't look like they were off for two weeks. The Lions played last night's game more like it was an elimination game than the opening game of the series.

Doug Mathis got the start and was fairly effective for the short time he was in the game. Mathis tossed four shutout innings(59 pitches, 36 strikes) before giving way to the Samsung bullpen. Mathis gave up four hits and two walks while striking out three.

Samsung ace(by default) Cha Woo-chan relieved Mathis and added three shutout innings(36 pitches, 25 strikes). Cha gave didn't allow a baserunner while striking out five of the nine batters he faced. Dude was locked in.

Samsung broke a scoreless tie in the bottom of the fourth when second baseman Shin Myeong-cheol stepped up to the plate with runners on first and second with no outs. Shin absolutely stung a double into left/center to drive in both runners and give Samsung all the offense they would need.

Samsung loaded the bases with one out, but managed to get out of it. SK second baseman Jeong Geun-woo dropped a pop up right on the edge of the infield. He managed to locate the ball and get it back into the infield in time to get the runner coming home from third...barely. Jeong later redeemed himself by making a highlight reel catch on the final out of the inning. He made an over the shoulder catch on a ball that was headed for no man's land in right field. He never broke stride while running and looked up at the perfect time.

Samsung did run into a jam in the eighth inning, but Samsung called on closer Oh Seung-hwan to get them out of the jam and he delivered.

Oh stuck around for the ninth and recorded a perfect inning for the save.

SK starter Goh Hyo-joon was really mediocre last night. He probably would have been tagged for more runs if he wasn't pulled after 3 2/3 innings.

Samsung used an interesting strategy after their two week lay off. They used their starters for short periods of time instead of expecting them to be fully stretched out and able to go deep into games. It wouldn't be a huge shock to see them follow the same strategy in game two and beyond.

Game two is Wednesday night at 6 PM Daegu time. Samsung will try to go two games up on the Wyverns with Jang Won-sam on the mound. Jang battled various injuries all year and finished up 8-8 with a 4.15 ERA and 1.53 WHIP. Jang struck out 68 and walked 37 in 115 innings. SK will counter with journeyman starter Yoon Hee-sang. Yoon was last seen in game four of the second round. Yoon tossed five innings of one-run baseball. He gave up six hits and one walk while striking out six. Yoon has emerged as one of the better stories of the post season as he put together solid efforts against both KIA and Lotte.

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