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Nexen takes 2-0 playoff series lead over Doosan with 2nd straight walk-off win

All Headlines 18:59 October 09, 2013

By Yoo Jee-ho

SEOUL, Oct. 9 (Yonhap) -- The Nexen Heroes edged out the Doosan Bears 3-2 for their second straight walk-off victory on Wednesday, taking a commanding 2-0 lead in the best-of-five first round playoff series in the Korea Baseball Organization (KBO).

At the Heroes' home Mokdong Stadium, Kim Ji-soo delivered a game-winning single to right-center with one out in the bottom of the 10th, as the Heroes moved within one win of reaching the second round in their first-ever postseason.

The Game 3 of the best-of-five series will be at Jamsil Stadium, the Bears' home in southern Seoul, on Friday at 6 p.m.

The winner of this series will go on to play the LG Twins, who got the bye to the second round by finishing second in the regular season.

Since the first-round series became a best-of-five affair in 2008, only one team, the 2010 Lotte Giants, has blown a 2-0 series.

On Tuesday, the Heroes defeated the Bears 4-3 on Lee Taek-geun's single in the bottom of the ninth. Their dramatic win Wednesday marked the first time in the KBO postseason history that a team has lenjoyed back-to-back walk-off victories.

Doosan's reliever Oh Hyun-taek hit Park Byung-ho with a pitch to start the bottom of the 10th. Then with Kim Ji-soo at the plate with one out, Oh's throw to first to check Park went off target and into the foul territory, allowing Park to advance to third.

Kim, who entered the game in the ninth as a defensive replacement at third base, promptly lined a 2-2 offering to right-center to finish off the game that lasted more than four hours.

Kim entered the game with only 60 regular season games under his belt with a career .232 average.

The game began as a taut pitchers' duel between the two starters, Andy Van Hekken for the Heroes and Yu Hui-kwan for the Bears, and went through a mistake-laden stretch before Kim's extra-inning heroics.

The Bears finally broke the scoreless tie in the top eighth. Pinch hitter Oh Jae-il hit a one-out grounder to short with runners at the corners. Shortstop Kang Jung-ho threw to second baseman Seo Geon-chang for the force out, but Seo's throw to first went off the mark, allowing Heo Kyeong-min to score from third.

The Heroes evened the score in the bottom of the eighth on two wild pitches by Doosan's reliever Hong Sang-sam. Seo Geon-chang drew a leadoff walk and moved to second on a sacrifice bunt. He advanced to third when Hong sailed a pitch over the head of catcher Yang Eui-ji in an attempt to intentionally walk Park Byung-ho. On the very next pitch, Hong bounced the ball in the dirt and Seo sprinted home for the tying run.

The Bears then took advantage of a mishap by the Nexen reliever Son Seung-lak in the top of the ninth. Jeong Su-bin laid down a bunt to move Lee Jong-wook from second to third, and Son's throw to first went off Jeong's back and into the foul territory, allowing Lee to come home.

The Heroes pulled even in the bottom of the ninth, as Seo Geon-chang drew a one-out, bases-loaded walk from Kim Sun-woo, Doosan's fourth pitcher of the inning. They had a chance to finish off the game in the same inning, but Seo Dong-wook struck out swinging and Lee Taek-geun, the hero from Tuesday, grounded out to second to send the game into extra innings.

The Bears drew two straight walks with two outs in the top of the 10th, but Lee Jong-wook hit a grounder to first to end the rally and set up another dramatic win for the home team.

Nexen's reliever Han Hyun-hee was credited with the win after pitching a scoreless 10th. Oh Hyun-taek took the loss.

Van Hekken threw 7 1/3 innings and allowed one earned run on four singles and a walk, along with six strikeouts.

Yu Hui-kwan also lasted 7 1/3, conceding three hits and no earned run. He walked three and hit two batters.

The teams combined for 11 singles and no extra-base hits. The six Doosan pitchers issued seven walks and hit three batters, while four pitchers for Nexen gave up four walks.


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