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(LEAD) Ex-major league pitcher tosses no-hitter in S. Korea

All Headlines 22:20 June 30, 2016

(ATTN: ADDS details, photos)

SEOUL, June 30 (Yonhap) -- Former major league pitcher Michael Bowden threw a no-hitter in the top South Korean league Thursday.

The right-hander for the Doosan Bears tossed the 13th no-hitter in the Korea Baseball Organization's 34-year history, shutting down the visiting NC Dinos in a 4-0 victory at Jamsil Stadium in Seoul.

Bowden threw a career-high 139 pitches, striking out nine while walking three and hitting another.

The 29-year-old American is the third foreign pitcher to throw a no-hitter in the KBO, after Charlie Shirek, former Dinos pitcher, in 2014, and one-time Bear Yunesky Maya last year.

Bowden's batterymate, Yang Eui-ji, also became just the third backstop to catch at least two no-hitters. Yang was also behind the plate for Maya last year.

This is Bowden's first season in the KBO. He improved to 10-3 after Thursday's victory, and lowered his ERA from 3.69 to 3.34. He has 88 strikeouts against 25 walks in 94 1/3 innings.

He has pitched for the Boston Red Sox and the Chicago Cubs, with a record of 3-5 and a 4.51 ERA in 103 big league appearances across six seasons.

The Bears provided more than enough run support for Bowden, chasing the Dinos' rookie starter, Lim Seo-jun, after 2 2/3 innings.

The Bears scored twice with a pair of two-out singles in the bottom second, with Hur Kyoung-min and Kim Jae-ho delivering the goods.

In the fifth, the Bears doubled their lead as pinch-hitter Choi Joo-hwan hit an RBI double off the right field fence. Hur then drove in his second run of the game with a double of his own.

Bowden, whose previous career-high in pitch counts was 118 on June 4, reached 124 through eight. He was back on the mound to start the ninth to face the top of the Dinos' order.

Bowden struck out Lee Jong-wook and got Park Min-woo to ground out to second. Bowden then struck out Na Sung-bum to punctuate his monumental night.

With the victory, the Bears, the 2015 champs, improved to 51-22-1 (wins-losses-ties) in first place, six games ahead of the Dinos.

jeeho@yna.co.kr
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