The streaky Sinon Bulls bounced back from dropping three straight to the La New Bears with a pair a solid wins over the Macoto Cobras last week to move into a second-place tie with the President Lions in Taiwan's Chinese Professional Baseball League standings.
Huang Chung-yi's one-run single in the top of the ninth broke a 2-2 tie to give the Bulls a 3-2 lead before Chang "Prince of the Forest" followed with another RBI single for a 4-2 advantage that stood until the end in Sinjhuang Thursday.
The Cobras actually struck first in the bottom of the opening inning when cleanup man Hsieh "The Ugly" Jia-shien doubled in Wang Chuan-jia all the way from first for a quick 1-0 lead.
PHOTO COURTESY OF CPBL
The Cobras lead would last less than an inning as the Bulls answered with a run of their own in the top of the second on the Prince's solo home run off Cobras starter Chang Hsien-chih before moving ahead with a 2-1 lead on a sacrifice fly by catcher Yeh Jung-chang in the top of the fourth.
It took a solo blast by Cobras captain Chiou Chang-rong off Bulls starter Alfredo Gonzalez of the Dominican Republics to knot things up at 2-2 in the bottom of the seventh, setting the stage for the Bulls' late-inning runs in the eventual victory.
Gonzalez (6-3), allowed two runs on seven hits over eight quality innings, while closer Kuo Yong-chih picked up his third save in a scoreless ninth inning.
Taking the loss was Cobras set-up man Lee Ming-jin, who surrendered the game-deciding runs in the ninth on two innings of five-hit relief. The normally dependable reliever leads the league in holds with 10.
Bulls 6, Cobras 2, 10 innings
Friday night's contest in Hsinchu had the Bulls overcoming a 2-1 deficit with a run in the seventh to force a tie before they erupted for four runs in the top of the 10th inning for a 6-2 victory.
First baseman Hsu Guo-long's lining single up the middle off Cobras closer Felix Villegas of Puerto Rico scored the go-ahead run for the Bulls before an RBI groundout by Cheng Da-hong and a two-run error by the Cobras defense led to a four-run tenth for the Bulls.
The showdown between the staff ace for both clubs, Jorge Cortez of the Bulls and Lin "Little Chick" En-yu for the Cobras, had the two teams playing to a 1-1 tie through the first five frames in a pitchers' duel before the Hsieh's solo homer off Cortez in the bottom of the sixth, his eighth of the season, gave the serpents a narrow 2-1 lead.
The Bulls tied things up in the top of the seventh on outfielder Tseng Hua-wei's two-out single that scored Luo Song-yong who had reached first earlier on a throwing error by the Cobras first baseman before advancing to second on a ground-out by Yeh.
American right-hander Clint Weibl retired the final four Cobras batters in a relief appearance for his fifth win of the season, beating Villegas, who lost his second straight game in as many days.
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