A pitch that should have been a double ended up in the outfield, leading to five runs and a crucial momentum swing that could decide the game. KIA Tigers Mario Sanchez was once again unable to generate any rebounding momentum.
The Tigers fell to a 1-6 defeat against the Lotte Giants at Sajik Stadium in Busan on April 13. The loss dropped the Kia to 45-46-2 on the season and dropped them back to a five-game winning percentage.
Sanchez, who started the game, had been struggling lately. He was brought in as a replacement after playing in the Taiwanese Professional Baseball League and has faltered since his sensational debut (6⅓ innings, 5 hits (1 HR), 10 strikeouts, 1 run against KT on July 9). His last two games have been mixed results. On July 1, he gave up seven runs on 10 hits (one home run) in 4 innings against Samsung Electronics with four walks and four strikeouts, and on July 6, he gave up four runs on five hits (one home run) in 4⅓ innings against Hanwha with four walks and six strikeouts.
Once again, the game didn’t start well. Back-to-back singles in the first inning put runners on first and second, and he allowed a leadoff single in the second inning, but he didn’t allow a run to score. Instead, he used his command to get a strikeout in each of those situations to limit the damage.
In the third inning, the inhibitors came off. No help from the defense. The third inning was also a crisis. The leadoff hitter gave up a single to Ahn Kwon-soo and a walk to Ahn Chi-hong, putting runners on first and second with no outs.
He then faced Lee Jung-hoon, who induced a grounder to the second baseman. However, second baseman Kim Kyu-sung fielded the ball short and threw it into the outfield. The second baseman scored the first run of the game. At 150.3 mph, it wasn’t a slow pitch, but it wasn’t an unplayable pitch either.
Eventually, the Kia bench realized that it was a clear error and immediately substituted Kim Kyu-sung. They brought in Choi Jeong-yong, but the situation didn’t change. Sanchez seemed to settle down, but the crisis continued. He gave up a single to Jeon Jun-woo, putting the bases loaded.
However, he got out of the jam by striking out Goodrum on three pitches. Park Seung-wook hit an infield single to second base. Choi Jung-yong made a diving catch to keep the runners at bay. With the bases loaded, Choi struck out Kim Min-seok again.
The best case scenario for Sanchez and KIA would have been to limit the damage to two runs in a clutch situation with an error. However, things didn’t go according to plan for KIA.
With the bases loaded and two outs, Noh Jin-hyuk hit a three-run double over the left field fence. The score was 0-5, and the momentum was completely in Lotte’s favor. In the five-run outburst, Sanchez allowed just one earned run. The scorekeeper also felt that Sanchez could have kept the runs in check if he hadn’t made an error in the third inning.
Starting second baseman Kim Sun-bin is currently out of the lineup with a sore hamstring. The second base position continues to be an issue. The team is anxious to get him back and miss his presence. Sanchez probably misses him too. 파워볼사이트