The Chinatrust Whales topped the Macoto Cobras by a 5-3 final score in Sinjhuang on Sunday evening behind five strong innings by starter Shen Yu-jeh to salvage a split of their series against the serpents.
It was Shen's fourth straight win since his promotion back to the Whales rotation early last month.
The lefty had refined his pitching mechanics during a month-long stint in the Whales bullpen after a few poor starts early in the season and has now become one of the more dominant left-handed starters in the league.
The contest began with the visiting Whales taking it to Cobras starter Jeremy Hill early with a pair of first-inning runs on a single and a walk before Carlos Villalobos drove a ball deep down the middle to give his team a 2-0 lead.
Kuo Dai-yong's s bases-loaded two-run single would cap off a three-run third that gave the marine creatures a comfortable 5-0 cushion.
Down by five runs against a stellar effort from Shen, the Cobras lineup finally got to the lefty in the fifth with three straight hits to load the bases before knocking in a pair of runs to fall within three of the Whales in a 5-2 game.
They would tack on another run to make it 5-3 in the sixth on Chiou Chang-rong's blooper single to shallow-right off reliever Lorenzo Barcelo.
Chiou's hit came after Shen yielded a leadoff double to start the inning.
But that was as close as the Cobras would get, as Barcelo retired all but one Cobras hitter in three spectacular innings of one-hit relief.
US closer Kevin Tolar then finished off the Cobras with a scoreless ninth inning to preserve the victory.
Shen was credited with the win for his five solid innings of work, allowing three runs on six hits to improve to an even 4-4 for the year.
He took a two-hit shutout into the fifth before running into trouble to lose the shutout bid, but managed to get out the jam with minimal damage to pocket the win.
Taking the tough loss was Hill, who lasted only three innings by surrendering all five of the Whales runs on five hits and three walks to drop to 6-7 for the season.
Bulls 20, Elephants 7
Erupting for 20 runs on 21 hits, the Sinon Bulls took batting practice against the Brother Elephants pitchers in Tianmu on Sunday in a 21-7 blowout to end a seven-game losing skid.
After the Bulls struck in the top of the first with a run on an RBI groundout by Cheng Jau-han to lead it 1-0, the Elephants immediately responded with two runs of their own in the bottom of the same inning to actually take a brief 2-1 lead.
That was the only time that the Bulls would trail in the game as they sent 14 to the plate in what turned out to be a ten-run third inning, highlighted by Cheng's three-run double off Elephants reliever Wu Jung-yi for a rare double-digit lead.
The 10 runs in the third by the Bulls as well as the 20 for the game were both new club records, as they unloaded all the frustration caused by their seven-game slide at the expense of the Elephants pitchers.
All nine of the Sinon batters had at least one hit in the game with Cheng Da-hong, Hsu Guo-long, and Lin Tsung-nan collecting three apiece to lead the way.
Getting the big win to stop the Bulls' slide was starter Alfredo Gonzalez, who pitched seven innings of three-run ball on seven hits for skipper Huang Chung-yi to end the seven-game slide, beating his counterpart Liu Jung-nan, who served up six runs on as many hits in just two-and-one-third innings of play to lose his fifth game of the year.