Thu, May 15, 2008 - Page 19 News List

CPBL: Lions win nail-biter over the Elephants

By Paul Huang  /  CONTRIBUTING REPORTER

Chen Chin-feng of the La New Bears, rear, is tagged out by Chen Ke-fan of the dmedia T-Rex as he tries to slide into home base during the fifth inning of their CPBL game at the Taipei County Baseball Stadium in Sinjhuang on Tuesday.

PHOTO: LIAO CHEN-HUEI, TAIPEI TIMES

Yang Seng's two-out single with a runner on third scored the go-ahead run in the top of the twelfth as the President Lions overcame a ninth-inning meltdown to win 11-10 against the Brother Elephants at the Kaohsiung County Baseball Stadium late on Tuesday night.

With his team leading 10-8 in the bottom of the ninth, reliever Shen Bo-chang allowed a bases-clearing, two-run double to the Elephants’ Chen Rei-chen. That breathed new life into the Elephants, before Yang ultimately bailed him out three innings later with a clutch hit that knocked in the game-winner.

The win not only avoided what would have been an embarrassing loss for the league-leaders and defending champions, but also kept them from losing two straight for the first time this season as they maintained a five-game cushion over the second-placed La New Bears.

The classic seesaw battle began with the Elephants taking advantage of three rare errors by the Lions defense in the bottom of the first, by scoring three runs for a surprising 3-0 lead.

Then came a three-run homer by the Lions’ Yang Dong-yi that quickly brought his team back to 3-3 in the top of the fourth, before each team would trade two more runs over the next two innings to make it 5-5 after the sixth.

Chen Lien-hong’s two-out single with a man on second would put the Lions ahead 6-5 in the top of the seventh, only to see fellow relievers Kao Jien-san, Yen Chuen-hao and Tsai Shih-chin cough up three runs in the bottom of the same inning to give the Elephants an 8-6 lead.

It took a three-run blast by the Lions’ Kuo Dai-chi to cap a four-run eighth that helped them reclaim what was seemingly a safe 10-8 lead, before Chen’s timely double sent the game into the extra-innings in a dramatic ninth.

Picking up the win for the Lions in a game that saw a dozen pitchers used by the two teams was right-hander Yo, who entered the game in the eleventh and delivered two scoreless innings for his first victory of the season, while his counterpart Yeh Yong-jeh suffered the tough loss for allowing the winning-run, despite turning in three outstanding innings of one-hit relief.

Bears 12, T-Rex 3

The La New Bears feasted off a struggling dmedia pitching staff by dialing up 18 hits against their former Taiwan Major League brethren in a lopsided 12-3 trouncing at the Taipei County Baseball Stadium in Sinjhuang on Tuesday.

The win maintained their chase of the top-ranked Lions, who also won on Tuesday night.

Bears starter Hsu Wen-hsiung kept his unbeaten streak in Taipei County alive by tossing five-and-two-third innings of three-run ball on seven hits for his fourth win of the year in a game that saw the T-Rex send a season-high seven hurlers to the mound in a non-extra-inning contest.

Offensively for the rambunctious Bears, Huang “Easy” Long-yi’s four-for-five hitting with an RBI was worthy of a game-MVP selection, while Shih Chih-wei and Jiang Chih-tsong went a combined four-for-eight with three RBIs each to account for half of the run production on the night.

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