토스카지노Samsung ended its two-game series against Gwangju with a 1-1 draw. The win ended the first half. KIA lost in messy circumstances, with manager Kim Jong-kook, 50, ejected for protesting a video review.
Samsung rode a complete-game shutout by starter David Buchanan and a two-run homer by Kim Jae-sung to a 4-1 victory in the final game of the first half of the 2023 KBO League regular season against KIA at Gwangju-Kia Champions Field on Wednesday.
They had suffered a 2-3 comeback loss the day before. A three-game winning streak was slipping away. Instead, the win levelled the series at 1-1. The first game was cancelled due to rain. Having the upper hand in the opening battle was crucial. The last place in the first half was confirmed, but at least they finished with a win.
KIA failed to win seven games in a row. ‘Big Pitcher’ Yang Hyun-jong took the mound, but the result was disappointing. The silence of the batters was painful. In the third inning, there was a video review for a three-foot violation. Manager Kim Jong-kook was even ejected for protesting. They had a chance to take fifth place and zero points, but the opposite happened.
Samsung’s Kim Jae-sung hits a two-run home run in the fourth inning against KIA in the 2023 KBO League at Gwangju-Kia Champions Field on 13 March. Photo courtesy of Samsung Lions
Buchanan pitched nine innings of four-hit ball, striking out eight and walking one. It was a complete game win. It was Samsung’s first complete game win of the season. It was his first complete game in 425 days since 14 May last year against Doosan in Daegu. This is the first time Musasagu has pitched a complete game since his debut.
It was his 100th career start in the KBO and his 70th quality start (QS). Pitching on four days’ rest. He pitched in the rain. There were no problems, and his unique pitches shined. He picked up his seventh win of the season (6-0) and lowered his ERA from 3.05 to 2.88.
At the plate, Kim Jae-sung hit his first home run of the season, going 1-for-2 with an RBI and a walk. Ryu Ji-hyuk was good with two hits and two runs scored, while Kim Sung-yoon had two hits and one run scored. Kim Dong-jin had one hit and one RBI, and Jose Pirela had two hits. Kang Kang-ul added two hits and a walk.
KIA starter Yang Hyun-jong took the loss after allowing three runs (two earned) on six hits (one home run) with one walk and six strikeouts in five innings. With the win, he moved into a tie for second place on the all-time starts list (370). A win would have tied him for the all-time lead in starts (163), but that didn’t happen. Instead, he took the loss.
Samsung’s Ryu Ji-hyuk runs home on a single by Kim Dong-jin in the eighth inning against KIA in the 2023 KBO League at Gwangju-Kia Champions Field on 13 March. Photo courtesy of Samsung Lions
Im Ki-young followed with one inning of three-strikeout perfection. Lee Jun-young pitched 0.2 innings of one-hit ball, and Park Jun-pyo pitched 0.1 innings of one-hit ball. Park was hit by a pitch and had to be removed after throwing just two pitches. Jeon Sang-hyun pitched 0.2 innings of one-hit ball and gave up one run, and Kim Ki-hoon closed out the game with 1.2 scoreless innings.
At the plate, Choi Won-jun had two hits, while Socrates Brito produced one hit. Kim Do-young had one double. The inability to get to Buchanan made it a difficult game.
In the top of the third, Samsung scored first. Kim Sung-yoon singled up the middle and Pirela hit a grounder that went wide of the pitcher’s mound. Yang Hyun-jong picked it up and threw to first base, but it went wide left. Runners on second and third.
KIA requested a video review. Pirela flied out to fair territory. Could have been a three-foot violation out. However, the umpires explained, “The runner did run into fair territory, but it was safe because the pitcher did not throw the ball in the first place.”
Samsung’s Kim Dong-jin hits a single in the eighth inning against KIA in the 2023 KBO League at Gwangju-Kia Champions Field on 13 March. Photo courtesy of Samsung Lions
Manager Kim Jong-kook came out and protested strongly, but there was no reversal. He was ordered to leave the field. The game continued. In the bottom of the eighth inning, Kang was hit by a foil (catcher’s fastball). Kim Sung-yoon, the third baseman, came home to make it 1-0.
In the top of the fourth inning, they added another run. Ryu Ji-hyuk singled up the middle to load the bases. Kim Jae-sung hit a two-run home run to right field to make it 3-0.
With the count at 1-2, he pulled a four-pitch change-up high in the zone for a two-run shot that travelled 110 metres. It was his first home run of the season. It had been 301 days since he hit one against Doosan in Daegu on 15 September last year.
They struck again in the top of the eighth. Ryu Ji-hyuk singled to right, Lee Jae-hyun sacrificed and Kim Jae-sung walked to put runners on first and second. Kim Dong-jin hit a single to left to make it 4-0.
In the bottom of the ninth, KIA had runners on second and third as Choi Won-jun singled to left and Kim Do-young doubled to right. Na Sung-beom’s grounder to first brought home the runner from third to make it 1-4. There was no more.