Chang "Prince of the Forest" Tai-shan's walk-off home run won the game in the bottom of the ninth for the Sinon Bulls as they rallied from one down to top the President Lions at the Douliou County Baseball Stadium in Douliou on Tuesday night to snap a two-game losing skid.
With a runner on first and his team trailing 0-1, the veteran slugger entered the game as a pinch-hitter and delivered the game-winner with one clutch swing that deposited the pitch from Tsai Shih-chin over the centerfield wall for a two-run blast.
“This is why the game of baseball is so great,” the Prince said after the game. It was only fitting that his first homer of the year came in such dramatic fashion. “It’s not over until the final out is recorded,” Chang added.
The classic pitchers’ duel between the Lions’ Chang Chih-chiang and the Bulls’ Jose Espinal was a scoreless tie through the fourth until the Lions jumped on top 1-0 with the help of an error by the Sinon defense in the top of the fifth.
Yang Dong-yi’s routine grounder to second with two outs and runner on third would have been an inning-ending out to keep the score tied at 0-0.
Instead, the Bulls’ Chang Jia-hao mishandled the ball and allowed the runner to score from third with an unearned run to give the Lions a 1-0 lead that they would hold all the way to the bottom of the ninth.
A leadoff walk issued by Chang Chih-chiang on his 96th pitch of the night then prompted the Lions to send in Tsai to wrap up the game in a save situation, setting the stage for the Prince’s ninth-inning heroics.
Pocketing his second win of the year to even his season mark at 2-2 was Bulls reliever Lin Chi-wei who allowed a hit and struck out two in a scoreless top of the ninth.
As for the Lions who seemed well on their way to a 1-0 shutout win, Tsai was dealt his first blown save and loss of the season for serving up the long ball to the Prince at the end.
Elephants 0, Bears 0, postponed
The scheduled showdown between the Brother Elephants and the La New Bears at the Kaohsiung County Baseball Stadium was rained out and postponed to June 13th.