Taipower broke a scoreless tie in the bottom of the ninth to edge past National Sports Training Center 1-0 at the Taichung Municipal Baseball Stadium yesterday afternoon.
Tsai Chih-yu’s pinch-hit single with the bases loaded scored the game-winner for the Power Crew, that not only won for the second straight day, but also clinched the final series in their respective regular season play.
“[Tsai] was not on the starting lineup because of an injured elbow that kept him from throwing the ball, but he could hit the ball well as you can see,” Taipower skipper Lee Ying-nan said after the game.
Tsai’s timely single was a stroke of genius as his decision to pinch-hit paid off.
The classic pitchers’ duel between the Power Crew’s Shih Hung-chieh and the Trainers’ Chen Guan-rue saw neither offense able to plate any run through the eighth with Shih pitching shutout ball in a five-hit gem and Chen holding his ground in a three-hitter before being pulled one out into the seventh due to a leg cramp.
Even though Chen’s replacement Liu Yao-chien managed to keep it a scoreless game in the seventh and the eighth, the Trainers’ luck finally ran out in the ninth as Edward Rogers led off the inning with a single and took second on a sacrifice bunt before reaching third on a pair of walks to set up Tsai’s game-clincher.
“I would like to thank my defense for bailing me out a few times; without their help, I would not have been able to keep it scoreless,” game-winner Shih said after the game.
He was the beneficiary of four double plays turned by the Taipower defense.
Coming into the game as the underdogs, the Trainers put up a good fight with the stellar pitching of Chen before a cramp ended his day a couple of innings short.
Taking the loss was reliever Pan Ting-fong who allowed the winning run to reach on a clean single by Rogers. It was the only hit he gave up in an otherwise solid outing.
The scheduled contests between the Topco Scientific Falcons and Chii Lih Coral in Taichung and between Taiwan Cooperative Bank and Veetime in Douliou were called off due to heavy rain in the central Taiwan region.
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