Bombarding a struggling Chinatrust Whales pitching staff with 18 hits, the Brother Elephants easily defeated the marine creatures 11-2 at the Hsinchu Municipal Baseball Stadium on Tuesday night to start the week with a bang.
The heart of the Elephants order, also known as the “Three Swordsmen,” Chen “Golden Warrior” Chih-yuan, Peng “Chia Chia” Cheng-min and Chen Guan-ren, batted a combined 8-for-16 with a pair of RBIs to anchor an attack that mowed through the Whales pitching in like a runaway tornado.
Also starring for the men in the golden uniform were Chen Rei-chen and Huang Cheng-wei, who added five more hits between them with two more RBIs to leave little margin of error for the six Whales hurlers who saw action on the night.
Unlike the final score would suggest, the Whales drew first blood in the match with two first-inning runs off Elephants starter Danny Core, courtesy of a two-run single by Abraham Nunez of the Dominican Republic.
That turned out to be the only runs that Core and his bullpen mates would allow as he pitched the next six innings by letting only one Whales hitter past first before relievers Yeh Yong-jeh and Wu Bao-shien tossed a scoreless eighth and ninth to completely shut down the Whales attack.
As for the Elephants, who scored 11 unanswered runs to take this one in convincing manner, the comeback rally began with Wang Sheng-wei knocking home their first run in the top of the second on an RBI-single off Kao before Chen Rei-chen’s liner over the middle and a bases-loaded walk drawn by Wang in the third quickly put them ahead 3-2.
That was good enough for Core to win his second game of the season as the US right-hander gave up two runs (only one earned) on six hits while fanning seven and walking one.
Tagged with his second defeat of the year was Whales starter Kao Min-jing, who began the year with a 2-0 mark, but has since dropped two in a row to even his record to a mediocre 2-2.
The self-destructing Whales defense, which committed a total of six errors in the game that led to four unearned runs for the Elephants, now leads the league in total errors with 33 in just 21 games.
Lions 6, Bears 2
The President Lions brought the La New Bears’ six-game winning streak to a grinding halt by edging the league leaders in a 6-2 final on the road at the Kaohsiung County Baseball Stadium for their sixth win in the last eight games.
Kao Guo-ching and Tilson Brito drove in a pair of runs each by going a combined 7-for-9 to back up starter Louis Pote in Pote’s second straight quality start to give the Lions a commanding 5-1 record in the six games versus the Bears so far this season.
It was Kao’s two-run single off Bears starter Andrew Loraine in the top of the first that got the Lions on the board, before Brito followed with an RBI-double to give the visitors a quick 3-0 lead.
The scoreboard read 5-0 by the end of the third. The Lions roared again in the third, this time on a bases-loaded single by Kao Chih-kang for two more runs.
The Bears finally broke through in the bottom of the fourth with an RBI-groundout by Yu Jin-deh, but that was as close as they got as the Lions pitching kept them at bay for the next four innings before allowing a meaningless run in the ninth to conclude the scoring.
Picking up his third win of the season in as many starts was Pote, who surrendered a run on seven hits over six-and-one-third innings to beat fellow countryman Loraine, who lasted only four frames with five runs allowed on eight hits in his second loss of the season.