Makeup action continued in the Chinese Professional Baseball League with the Lamigo Monkeys overcoming a two-run deficit in the sixth to edge past the Sinon Bulls in a 4-3 final at the Taoyuan International Baseball Stadium last night.
The win nipped a two-game losing skid for the Monkeys, who had fallen out of contention for the first-half title with a 4-8 mark in their last dozen, but more importantly it injected a big boost of confidence as they look to close out the first half on a high note this coming week.
“The injuries have definitely hurt us in the last few weeks, but that’s all part of the game,” Lamigo manager Hung Yi-chung said after the game.
His team has missed the services of sluggers Chen Chin-fong and Lin Chih-sheng, going 4-8 during a span without them.
Sound pitching on the part of both starters, Lin Ying-jeh for the Bulls and Scot Drucker for the Monkeys, kept the opposing offenses scoreless through the first four frames even though the Monkeys were able to load the bags against Lin in the bottom of the fourth without plating any runs.
That would change in the fifth as Su Jien-rong drew a two-out walk off Drucker and scored two batters later to give his team a hard-earned 1-0 advantage.
Sinon doubled their lead an inning later with Lin Yi-chuan and Wu Tsong-jung leading off the inning with back-to-back singles off Drucker to set up Wang Hsin-min’s sacrifice fly to make it 2-0.
Held scoreless for six innings despite placing runners on third on four different occasions, the home Monkeys finally broke through in the seventh on Shih Chih-wei’s clutch single with the bases loaded to plate a pair of runs that knotted the game at 2-all.
That was the spark that the Monkeys hitters needed as they came up with two more hits in the eighth against Sinon reliever Chen Huan-yang and took advantage of his successor Chang Geng-hao with two runs on a wild pitch and a bases-loaded walk to take a 4-2 lead.
Trailing 4-2, the Bulls managed to score once in the top of the ninth with two singles and a sacrifice fly off Lamigo closer Hsu Ming-jeh.
That was as close as they got as Hsu calmly induced a grounder to first with two outs and the tying run on third for the game-ending out.
Hsu was awarded with his second win of the year for his 1-1/3 innings of one-run relief, while the loss went to Chen, who gave up two runs on four hits and a walk to fall to a 3-4 mark for the season.
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