Whales tame Lions in weather-affected five-inning game

By Paul Huang  /  CONTRIBUTING REPORTER

Tue, Sep 12, 2006 - Page 20

Torrential rain over the weekend continued to affect matches in the Chinese Professional Baseball League as three of the four scheduled contests on Sunday were forced to be postponed for the second time this week.

The only game that was completed on Sunday was the match between the Chinatrust Whales and the President Lions in Tainan where the Whales topped the Lions by a 3-1 margin over five innings in a rain-shortened game to earn a one-game series split against the home cats.

Yang Seng's solo homer to deep-right off Whales starter Tseng Jau-hao in the bottom of the first got the home team on the board with a quick 1-0 lead.

The first-inning run off Tseng turned out to be the only run that the Whales staff ace allowed as he shook off early-game jitters and retired 17 of the next 19 hitters he faced for his team-best eleventh win of the year.

Standing opposite Tseng with a decent outing on the mound was Lions veteran right-hander Tsao Jung-yang who cruised through the first three innings before running into trouble in a two-run fourth to drop his seventh decision of the year.

Trailing 3-1 after the fifth, the Lions had to settle for the loss as the rain forced officials to end the contest after it had reached the minimum number of innings played (5).

Offensively for the marine mammals, American slugger Brian Becker led off the fourth with a double off Tsao and scored on a liner up the middle by catcher Wang Hsin-min for the Whales' first run before outfielder Yeh Chang-long's RBI single two batters later knocked Wang in for the second run of the inning.

Wang would add another RBI to his credit with his second hit of the game in the top of the fifth.