Wed, Jul 02, 2003 - Page 19 News List

Bulls' Osvaldo Martinez breaks strikeout record


History was made in the CPBL after Osvaldo Martinez of the Sinon Bulls struck out seven in a row against the Makoto Gida on Sunday night to break the record of six that had stood for over 13 years.

The right-handed pitcher from the Dominican Republic ended up fanning 12 batters to boost his league-leading total to 110 in a 3-0 shutout as he chalked up his ninth win this season.

The game featured two towering blasts by Bulls' cleanup man Chang Tai-shan (張泰山), his third homer in as many games to push his league-high total to 16. It was Chang's second multiple home-run performance this season.

The victory gave the hosts the edge for the three-game series that began with the Bulls taking game 1 by a score of 3-2 in 11 innings on Thursday night.

The Gida had a 2-1 lead in the bottom of the ninth before Chang Tai-shan's 14th home run of the season off Gida closer Bobby Munoz evened things up at two-all, sending the game into extra innings. With two out and runners at the corners, Bulls shortstop Cheng Jau-han (鄭兆行) beat out a grounder to second for an infield single that brought home the game-winning run.

Game 2 on Friday night also went into extra innings, only this time the Gida won 2-1. Starting pitchers Jeff Andra of the Bulls and Tsai Shih-ching (蔡世勤) of the Gida, threw extremely well as they held opposing hitters to one run through seven and six innings of play, respectively.

In the top of the 10th, Gida shortstop Kao Cheng-wei (高正偉) delivered a game-winning single off of Bulls closer Ramon Morel. Gida closer Munoz, who blew a save the night before, got the last two outs for his sixth save of the season.

The First Securities Agan avoided a four-game sweep against the President Lions with a 3-3 tie on Saturday in Tainan. This was a game that should have been won by the Agan had it not been for right fielder Lu Jun-hsiung's (呂俊雄) error in the bottom of the seventh that allowed the Lions' game-tying run.

With the bases loaded and one out, Lu caught a flyball in the foul territory that allowed the runner on third to tag and sprint home for the score.

The tie cost Agan starter Liang Rue-hao (梁如豪), who left the game after the fifth inning with a 3-1 lead, the potential win and extended the Lions non-losing streak to six games.

"Players that make that kind of mental error do not deserve to play professional ball," infuriated Agan skipper Tsai Rong-chung (蔡榮宗) told reporters after the game.

After losing the first three games of the series by a combined score of 11 to three, the series finale was the Agan's best chance for a win against a red-hot Lions club that is undefeated five games into the second half of the season.

The Brother Elephants lost 6-0 to the Chinatrust Whales on Sunday night in Hualien.

The Whales victory marked their first of the second half and promptly ended their nine-game non-winning streak, thanks to ace starter Nakayama Hiroaki's seven scoreless innings of work to drop his league-leading ERA to 1.81.

The Elephants took the three-game series 2-1, extending their non-losing streak to 10 series.

The series drew more than 14,000 fans into the ballpark over the weekend as interest in professional baseball continues to expand in eastern Taiwan.

Upcoming Games

The Gida will pay the Agan a visit in Kaohsiung for a four-game series this week as the battle between the two former TML teams heats up.

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