Lan Ying-luen’s two-run triple jumpstarted the Lamigo Monkeys’ offense in a three-run third as they rallied from an early 0-1 deficit with five unanswered runs and held on tooth and nail to defeat the Chinatrust Brothers in a 7-4 final at the Taoyuan International Baseball Stadium last night to sweep the three-game weekend series.
It was the second straight night that the rookie slugger had driven in two or more runs to help the Primates humble their opposition following Saturday night’s three-RBI outing.
Also starring for the Monkeys was Kuo Yen-wen, who homered on a three-for-four effort with a pair of RBIs to lead the home squad past the visitors in a solid victory.
Starter Mitch Talbot of the US made his Taiwan debut a memorable one with six innings of one-run ball on five hits and as many strikeouts to keep the Brothers hitters at bay.
Trailing by five to start the top of the ninth inning, the Brothers managed to score twice off Hsu Ming-chieh to chase the Lamigo veteran hurler, who was supposed to close out the game to give regular closer Miguel Mejia the night off.
However, with a tying run at the plate, Mejia was forced to enter the game with minimal warm-up and still induced a comebacker that he caught to end to game for his team.
LIONS 3, RHINOS 1
Miscues by the EDA Rhinos defense at the critical juncture of the game proved costly as they surrendered the go-ahead runs to the Uni-President Lions in the decisive eighth to lose 3-1 at the Sinjhuang Baseball Stadium in New Taipei City last night.
Back-to-back wild throws by the Rhinos infield on an infield single by Liu Fu-hao with two outs scored the runner from second to break a 1-all tie before the Lions sealed it with an RBI single from Deng Chih-wei to take a 3-1 lead that stood to the end.
The win not only avenged a narrow loss to the Rhinos for the Cats the night before, but also clinched the three-game set over the weekend for them as they look to climb out of the cellar in the standings to make a serious run for the post-season.
Lin Chih-hsiang’s two-out single with a runner on third gave the Lions a quick 1-0 lead that lasted less than an inning as the Rhinos returned the favor with a run of their own in the bottom of the same inning on the merit of Lin Yi-chuan’s two-out single to tie the game at 1-all.
That was all the runs that either team would plate over the next four innings, with starters Wang Ching-ming of the Lions and Victor Garate for the Rhinos holding their ground to set the stage for the Lions’ late-game heroics.
Picking up the win was reliever Fu Yu-kang, who tossed two innings shutout ball for his sixth win of the year.