S. Korea beats Taiwan in baseball opener

By Joseph Yeh ,The China Post

Unable to stop Korea’s explosive Major Leagues-level batter Choo Shin-soo, of the Cleveland Indians, who single-handedly nailed two homers and four RBIs in yesterday’s game, Taiwan suffered its first loss in the baseball event of the Asian Games in Guangzhou, China, last night with a score of 6-1 to South Korea.

Korea’s right-handed starter, Ryu Hyun-jin, who had an amazing league leading 1.82 ERA, 16 wins and 187 strikeouts in the past season in Korea, dazzled Taiwanese batters with his breaking balls and successfully blocked the team’s offense for four innings without giving away a hit.

It was not until Taiwan’s No. 4 batter Lin Chih-sheng’s single at the top of the fourth inning that the deadlock was broken.

At the meantime, the game proved to be too much a pressure for Taiwan’s 19-year-old starting fireballer Lin Yi-hao, of the Yomiuri Giants in Japan’s professional league, who gave up four earned runs out of two two-run homeruns by Choo. Another pitcher in Japan, Yang Yao-shun of Softbank Hawks, took over at the bottom of the third. He successfully stopped the bleeding on Taiwan’s part for three frames until he gave up two more runs at the sixth. Lin’s RBI single broke Taiwan’s scoring drought at the top of six. However, it was the only run Taiwan earned in the game.

Taiwan will face team Pakistan today at its second game in the Group B of the preliminary round of the baseball event. It is expected that Taiwan will easily pass the Pakistanis.

The top two finishers in each group will face each other in the semifinals that will begin on Nov. 18.