SSG, backed by former major leaguers, fended off a challenge from Samsung to clinch the best-of-three weekend series.
토스카지노 SSG rode a seven-inning no-hitter from starter Kim Kwang-hyun and a two-run double from Choo Shin-soo to a 4-0 victory over Samsung in the 2023 Shinhan Bank SOL KBO League at SSG Landers Field in Incheon on Wednesday. League second-place SSG (55-41-1) kept pace with leaders LG with back-to-back wins along with a three-game weekend sweep, while not allowing the top three teams to catch up. Meanwhile, Samsung (41W58L1D), who came to Incheon in good spirits, remained in ninth place.
SSG starter Kim Kwang-hyun threw 99 pitches over seven innings, allowing three hits, two walks and three strikeouts to earn his seventh win of the season. He was in much better form, with his fastball reaching 150.2 kilometres per hour. He has allowed just two runs in 20 innings over his last three games, lowering his ERA from nearly four to 3.40. Noh Kyung-eun and Choi Min-joon followed suit to protect the lead.
The bats showed signs of rebounding with 10 hits. Leadoff hitter Choo Shin-soo had two hits and two RBIs, while Park Sung Oh also had a multi-hit game. Choi Jeong-jeong had one hit and one RBI. SSG had a solid day at the plate, with all eight starters except Kim Min-sik recording a hit.
Samsung, on the other hand, did not have perfect success as Taylor Widener, who made his team debut, gave up four runs on 10 hits in 6⅔ innings. The batting line-up was also tied to Kim Kwang-hyun. The centre fielder, Pirela, in particular, hit a pair of doubles.
Before Widener could catch their breath, SSG scored early and often to take control of the game. In the top of the first inning, Choi Ji-hoon hit a ball to deep right field and was thrown out at third base, but Kim Kang-min immediately followed with a double down the right field line. Choi Jeong-jeong followed with an RBI single to right field.
Kim Kwang-hyun ⓒSSG Landers
Oh Tae-gon had two hits and two stolen bases ⓒSSG Landers
In the second inning with a 1-0 lead, Kim Sung-hyun singled to left and Han Yoo-seom followed with a single up the middle to put runners on first and third. Oh Tae-gon followed with a single but was stranded at third base.
SSG took a 2-0 lead in the top of the third when Choo Shin-soo doubled to left-centre, but both runners were stranded when Choi Ji-hoon flied out to shortstop. In the process, Samsung shortstop Lee Jae-hyun, who had a great game, injured his left shoulder and had to be replaced. Samsung said it was a temporary dislocation of his left shoulder, but the condition did not appear to be serious and he will undergo an MRI examination in Daegu on the 14th after the icing.
With Kim Kwang-hyun continuing to pitch well, SSG scored one more run in the fifth inning. Leadoff hitter Oh Tae-gon singled to right and stole second, and Kim Min-sik laid down a sacrifice bunt to send Oh to third. From there, Choo Shin-soo hit a huge sacrifice fly to centre field to make it 3-0.
While Kim pitched seven scoreless innings of relief, Choo Shin-soo dominated the middle innings. In the top of the seventh, Oh Tae-gon singled again and went to second on a stolen base, and two batters later, Choo Shin-soo hit another single to right field to make it 4-0.
SSG closed out the top of the eighth inning with Noh Kyung-eun, and with the score 4-0, Choi Min-joon pitched a scoreless ninth inning to secure the win.