The Sinon Bull’s bullpen walked in three straight runs in the eighth to lose to the Uni-President Lions 6-5 at the Tainan Municipal Baseball Stadium on Friday.
It was the second setback in a row for the previously red-hot Bulls, who had won a club-record six straight. What should have been the second win of the year for starter Lin Keh-chien — who allowed three runs (two earned) on a half-dozen hits through the seventh — turned into a disappointing no-decision as three of his bullpen mates combined for four dreadful walks to gift-wrap the win for the Lions.
“This one we definitely want back,” Bulls skipper Hsu Sheng-ming said after the game.
A win would have improved their league-leading mark to 7-2.
The showdown between Lin and Lions ace Pan “Du Du” Wei-luen saw the Bulls jump to a 3-0 lead in the top of the second thanks to a two-run fielding error by Lions third baseman Rico Washington. But the home cats fought back and scored three of the next four runs to trail by just one. Cheng Jau-han’s seventh-inning single drove in what seemed to be an insurance run for the Bulls as they went up by a deuce, only to see his bullpen suffer a total meltdown.
ELEPHANTS 7, BEARS 1
Seven unanswered runs in the top of the ninth by the Brother Elephants turned a 0-1 deficit into a shocking 7-1 trouncing of the La New Bears in Kaohsiung on Friday night.
The Bears needed a solo home run by Huang “Easy” Long-yi in the bottom of the eighth to break a scoreless gridlock for what was looked like another close victory for the home team, but the Elephants countered with seven runs in the ninth.
Kobayashi took the win with a lone run on five hits in eight innings. His counterpart Hsu Wen-hsiung also lasted eight innings before his bullpen suffered a late-game collapse.
• Bears 10, Elephants 4
• Bulls 4, Lions 4
• Bears v Elephants in Kaohsiung
• Bulls v Lions in Tainan