Hanwha defeats Lotte for its second straight win. After clinching the top spot for the first time in four years, the team is aiming for eighth place.
Hanwha won a 7-4 home game against Lotte in the 2023 Shinhan Bank SOL KBO League on Friday at Hanwha Life Eagles Park in Daejeon.
Rookie Moon Hyun-bin went 2-for-3 with a two-run homer to tie the game in the second inning and a walk-off RBI single in the sixth. Park Sang-un was also 2-for-4 with a double and two RBIs, and Choi In-ho was 2-for-5 with a double and one RBI.
On the mound, starter Lee Tae-yang earned the win with five innings of two-run ball, while Joo Hyun-sang struck out the side in the top of the sixth to earn his second win of the season. Jung made his 1003rd career appearance, setting a new record for most appearances by an Asian pitcher.
With their second straight win, Hanwha improved to 58-79-6 in ninth place. Seventh-place Lotte, which has lost three straight, is 67-76.
Moon Hyun-bin ties the game with a two-run homer…Hanwha’s big five-run sixth inning
Lotte struck first. In the top of the inning, Lee Jung-hoon’s hard-hit ball hit short and hit third baseman Noh Si-hwan’s right leg. A throwing error allowed Lee to reach first base, and Lee Hak-joo homered on the ensuing two-out rally. Lee took a 140-kilometer fastball up the middle of the fourth pitch from Hanwha starter Lee Tae-yang and smashed it over the right field fence. It traveled 115 meters and was his third home run of the season.
Hanwha responded with a home run in the bottom of the second. After Kim In-hwan singled up the middle, Moon Hyun-bin pulled a 144-kilometer fastball from Lotte starter Na Kyun-ahn over the right-field fence. A 115-meter shot, his fifth home run of the season. It was a two-run shot that tied the game at 2-2.
The score remained 2-2 until the fifth inning, when Hanwha broke the game open with a five-run big inning. Noh Si-hwan singled to center, Chae Eun-sung walked, Kim In-hwan singled to shortstop, and Lee Jin-young grounded out to shortstop with the bases loaded. It was a 6-4-3 double play, but Lotte second baseman Jung Dae-sun’s throw to first went sideways. The runner at third came home, putting runners on first and third.
Lee Jin-young stole second, and with runners on second and third, Moon Hyun-bin pulled a low cutter outside the third strike zone from Na Kyun-ahn. He followed with a single to right field that beat the Lotte infield defense. Moon went 2-for-3 with a home run and three RBIs.
Park Sang-un followed with an RBI double to right-center field. Lotte right fielder Yoon Dong-hee tried to make a diving catch but couldn’t, allowing Park to advance to third. With the bases loaded, Choi In-ho lined an RBI single to right field after a seven-pitch battle with reliever Choi Jun-yong to extend the lead to 7-2. Choi In-ho was 2-for-4 with a double and an RBI, Park Sang-un was 2-for-3 with a double and an RBI, and Kim In-hwan was 2-for-3 with an RBI.
Lee Tae-yang sets the stage for victory, Asia’s highest 1003G by Jung Woo-ram
Hanwha starter Lee Tae-yang pitched five innings, allowing two runs (one earned) on four hits with one walk and four strikeouts. He gave up a home run to Lee Hak-joo, but was able to get through the fifth inning without further damage due to an unearned run on an error.
After settling down in the fourth and fifth innings, Lee threw a total of 76 pitches, topping out at 144km and averaging 141km, with a fastball (29), a forkball, slider (20+), and curveball (7). Despite not picking up a win, Lee finished the season with a 3.23 ERA.
Joo Hyun-sang, who came on as the second pitcher in the sixth inning, struck out Jeon Jun-woo on a wild pitch and held the Lotte center fielders to a triple play to earn his second win of the season (2-2). He also lowered his ERA from 2.03 to 1.99, establishing himself as one of the best bullpen arms in the league.
After Jang pitched one scoreless inning in the seventh, Jung Woo-ram took the mound in the eighth. He pitched his 1003rd career game, setting a new record for most appearances by an Asian pitcher. He surpassed Japan’s Hitoki Iwase’s record of 1002 games. Gao Jian-shan’s 636 games are the most by a Taiwanese pitcher. Chung celebrated by striking out the side with seven pitches.메이저놀이터
The ninth inning was a little more difficult. Closer Park Sang-won gave up back-to-back doubles to Jeon Jun-woo and Lee Jung-hoon, and then a single to Son Sung-bin for two runs. With the score 7-4, Park was removed from the game and Kim Bum-soo was brought in. Kim Bum-soo got Lee Hak-joo to ground out to first base for the final out to record his first save of the season.
Lotte suffered its eighth loss of the season (six wins) as starter Na Gyun-an was tagged for seven runs on eight hits (one home run) in 5 1/3 innings with two walks and three strikeouts. He held them to two runs through the fifth inning, but some poor defense in the sixth led to a five-run outburst. He ends the season with his ERA skyrocketing from 3.46 to 3.80.