The Brother Elephants capitalized on a fielding error by La New rookie Lin Chih-ping in the 12th to score the game-winner as they topped the Bears 4-3 in a four-and-a-half hour marathon in Tianmu on Sunday evening.
The win nipped a six-game winning streak for the previously red-hot Bears and helped the Elephants avoid a sweep in the three-game weekend series.
The highly anticipated showdown between the staff ace for both squads, Liao “the Golden Submarine” Yu-cheng of the Elephants and Aaron Rakers for the Bears lived up to its billing as the scoreboard read 0-0 through the top of the sixth before Rakers allowed back-to-back singles to start off the bottom of the inning, leading to a pair of runs for the Elephants.
The Bears got a run back in the seventh off Elephants reliever Tsao Jung-yang after Liao was forced to leave the game with a leg cramp.
After the Elephants tacked on what seemed to be an insurance run in the eighth to reclaim a two-point lead, the Bears answered with Pan Chung-wei’s two-run blast off closer Ryan Cullen in the ninth, forcing the game into extra innings.
Elephants reliever Mai Jia-rei earned a win by tossing two scoreless innings in the extra session to beat his counterpart Hsu Ming-jeh, who breezed through the 10th and 11th unharmed before running into trouble in the 12th.
BULLS 6, LIONS 4
Cheng Da-hong’s three-run homer in the bottom of the ninth rallied the Sinon Bulls from two down to defeat the Uni-President Lions 6-4 at the Taipei County Baseball Stadium in Sinjhuang on Sunday.
It was the second straight day the veteran slugger out of Chinese Culture University played the hero, with his clutch double forcing a tie to set up the Bulls’ dramatic comeback.
As for the free-falling Lions, things could not have been worse as they suffered their seventh straight loss for the first time in 19 years.