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Postseason pitchers make wrong kind of history

All Headlines 23:53 October 24, 2016

By Yoo Jee-ho

SEOUL, Oct. 24 (Yonhap) -- The Korea Baseball Organization (KBO) postseason game between the LG Twins and the NC Dinos on Monday was one for the ages -- and for all the wrong reasons.

The Twins beat the Dinos 2-1 with a walk-off infield single in the bottom of the 11th, but the dramatic finish was overshadowed by the sloppiness that ruled the entire evening.

The teams combined for 19 walks and six hit-by-pitches, a new postseason record total.

The previous record for the most walks and HBPs had been 19, set in Game 3 of the second round series between the Doosan Bears and the Samsung Lions in 2010. It was also an 11-inning affair.

On Monday, the Twins and the Dinos tied the record with two walks in the bottom of the sixth. Then in the bottom eighth, NC reliever Lee Min-ho hit Lee Chun-woong on a bunt attempt to set the record.

Lee Min-ho then hit the very next batter with his very next pitch for good measure. And the right-hander hit another batter in the same inning.

Three HBPs by a pitcher in one inning were also a new postseason mark.

There were more dubious records established on Monday. The Dinos alone handed out 13 walks, a new record by three.

A team had issued 10 walks in four previous postseason games, and three of them ended in extra innings.

The Dinos tied the record with two outs in the bottom of the fourth and broke it with one out in the bottom sixth.

The number of total walks by both teams on Monday, 19, were also a record. In Game 3 of the Korean Series in 2001, the Bears and the Lions combined for 16 free passes. On Monday, the Twins and the Dinos surpassed that mark in the top of the sixth.

Jang Hyun-sik of the NC Dinos reacts after completing the first inning against the LG Twins in their Korea Baseball Organization postseason game at Jamsil Stadium in Seoul on Oct. 24, 2016. (Yonhap)

All three LG HBPs were thrown by starter Ryu Jae-kuk, who tied his own postseason single-game record in just 5 2/3 innings of work.

The two teams combined for six HBPs, tying the record set on Oct. 10, 2010, between the Bears and the Lions in Game 3 of the second round.

The game started off on the wrong foot, as NC starter Jang Hyun-sik walked the first two batters he faced. He retired the next two, only to give up two more walks to let in the Twins' first run of the game. The four walks by Jang tied the mark for most by a pitcher in one inning.

Jang walked the first batter of the second inning, Chung Sang-ho, on four pitches, and that spelled the end of the day he'd rather forget. Jang was so wild that two of the four pitches against Chung went over and behind the back of the hitter.

Choi Keum-kang took over from Jang, and he wasn't that much better with his control. After two fly outs, Choi walked two straight batters.

In 2 2/3 innings, Choi issued four walks.

Lim Chang-min came on and, as if to keep up with his teammates, Lim walked the first batter he saw in the bottom fourth.

Ryu did his part for the record-setting night. He hit a batter in the second, walked two in the fourth and hit two more in the fifth. Then Ryu gave up two more walks in the sixth.

Lim walked his second batter of the night in the sixth, before handing the reins to Won Jong-hyun, who walked one later in the same inning.

In all, all six NC pitchers had at least one walk or an HBP. For LG, five relievers after Ryu only walked two.

There was also an unflattering record set on the offensive end. The teams left 33 men on base, beating the previous postseason record by six.

The Twins stranded 19 men on base, and the Dinos left 14 aboard. The Twins in particular failed to scored on five bases-loaded chances.

jeeho@yna.co.kr
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