They were even stronger against the league’s best offense. Hanwha’s present and future Moon Dong-ju couldn’t have pitched a better first half. He allowed just one run against LG, a team that ranks at the top of the hitting charts.
Korean baseball’s mecca, Jamsil Stadium. Moon threw a career-high 108 pitches against LG in Jamsil on Wednesday, allowing one run on five hits with one walk and five strikeouts in 7.1 innings. He overwhelmed his opponent with a scoreless seventh inning and struggled with a pitch count of over 100 in the eighth, but the next pitcher, Kim Bum-soo, kept the lead.
Moon took it to the next level with a steady stream of strikes with his fastball. On this day, Moon preempted the strike count with a hard fastball that topped out at 156 kilometers per hour. While his fastball easily took the lead, his curveball and slider were also effective. 메이저도메인
He retired seven consecutive batters from the third through the fifth innings, including four three-hit shutout innings. His defense was also outstanding. In the sixth inning, he sprinted to make a great catch of Moon Sung-joo’s hit. In the bottom of the seventh, he reacted quickly to a hit by Oh Ji-hwan and ended the inning with another grounder to the pitcher.
With the win, Moon lowered his ERA from 3.69 to 3.47. He finished the first half of the season with six wins. Hanwha defeated LG 2-1, making it two wins in a row against the second-ranked team following their previous game against SSG. Their season record is now 34 wins, 40 losses and four draws.
Behind Moon Dong-joo, Kim Bum-soo and Park Sang-won completed the win. Kim Bum-soo pitched 0.2 scoreless innings and Park Sang-won pitched one scoreless inning to earn his seventh save of the season.
Rookie Moon Hyun-bin scored the game-winning run. In the top of the first inning, Kim In-hwan singled to right and Noh Si-hwan singled to left to open the scoring, and with runners on first and second, Moon hit a two-run double after a nine-pitch battle with Casey Kelly. A tense pitching battle ensued, and Moon’s single was priceless.
In the bottom of the eighth, LG loaded the bases with one out after Moon Bo-kyung doubled, Park Hae-min walked, and Shin Min-jae singled. Hong Chang-ki’s grounder to shortstop scored Moon Bo-kyung from third, making it 1-2. Moon Sung-joo singled to load the bases again, but Kim Hyun-soo grounded out to second.
LG was unable to close the gap in the bottom of the ninth inning. The loss dropped LG’s record to 49 wins, 30 losses and two ties on the season. Despite losing the starting pitcher’s duel, it was a positive that Kelly, who had a very up-and-down first half, finished the job with seven innings of two-run ball.