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(2nd LD) Pirates' Kang Jung-ho sets career-high in home runs; Cards' Oh Seung-hwan gets 16th save

All News 15:27 September 07, 2016

(ATTN: ADDS details in paras 9-10)

SEOUL, Sept. 7 (Yonhap) -- Kang Jung-ho of the Pittsburgh Pirates enjoyed a two-homer game to set a new career-high with 16 long balls, hitting one off fellow South Korean Oh Seung-hwan of the St. Louis Cardinals.

Oh still picked up his 16th save of the season at PNC Park in Pittsburgh on Tuesday (local time), as the Cards hung on to beat the Bucs 9-7 in the wild one.

Kang hit a solo shot off Luke Weaver of the Cardinals in the bottom of the fourth, matching the 15 homers that he hit as a rookie last year.

He played 126 games in 2015. This was his 79th game of 2016.

Kang added an RBI with a single in the four-run fifth, as the Pirates went ahead 6-5.

The Pirates' closer Tony Watson imploded in the top of the ninth, however, giving up three home runs with two outs as the Cardinals retook the lead at 9-6.

It set the stage for Oh, who retired the first two batters. Kang then stepped up and drilled a 0-2 fastball for his second home run of the game.

Oh settled down and struck out Adam Frazier to end the game. His ERA went up from 1.79 to 1.89.

Kang had gone 0-for-2 against Oh this season before the home run. Both players had starred in the Korea Baseball Organization (KBO) before reaching the majors. At home, Kang was 4-for-13 with a home run and two doubles, along with three RBIs, against Oh.

Kang's two-homer day wasn't enough to stop the Pirates' slide. They've now lost eight in a row to fall to 67-69, while the Cardinals moved to 73-64 and held down the second wild-card spot in the National League. The New York Mets are one game behind, and the Pirates are 5.5 games out.

In this Associated Press photo, Kang Jung-ho of the Pittsburgh Pirates hits a solo home run off Luke Weaver of the St. Louis Cardinals in the fourth inning of their game at PNC Park in Pittsburgh on Sept. 6, 2016. (Yonhap)

Kang went 3-for-5 with three RBIs and three runs scored. He didn't start his season until early May after recovering from leg injuries sustained last September. He was then placed on the 15-day disabled list on Aug. 20 with a left shoulder injury.

Kang came off the bench in his first game back on Monday and was making his first start since the DL stint on Tuesday.


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