The LG Twins extended their lead over the Lotte Giants thanks to Casey Kelly, who pitched a no-hitter for the first time this season.
LG defeated Lotte 3-1 in a home game of the 2023 Shinhan Bank SOL KBO League at Jamsil Stadium in Seoul on Thursday.
LG manager Yoon Kyung-yeop, who calculated “88 wins” as the number of wins needed to clinch first place in the regular season, collected his 65th win (38 losses, 2 draws) on the day.
LG’s joy was compounded by the return of Kelly, who has struggled this season, with six innings of three-hit ball.
Kelly had tossed a no-decision on June 23 against Lotte (eight innings, seven hits, one run), but this was the first time this season that he hadn’t allowed an earned run.
Kelly got into trouble in the top of the first inning when leadoff hitter Ahn Kwon-soo doubled. The ball bounced off the glove of LG third baseman Moon Bo-kyung, which could have rattled Kelly even more.
However, when Lotte’s Kim Min-seok fumbled a bunt, Ahn Kwon-soo was thrown out at second base, lifting a weight off Kelly’s shoulders.
From there, Kelly didn’t face any more trouble and pitched a scoreless sixth inning to earn her eighth win of the season.
LG focused its firepower in the fourth inning.
One out later, Kim Hyun-soo led off with a bunt single in front of the pitcher, and Austin Dean followed with a double to left field to lead off the inning.
Oh Ji-hwan struck out, but Moon Bo-kyung was hit by a pitch and Park Dong-won walked to load the bases, and Moon Sung-joo followed with an RBI single up the middle to make it 3-0.
Lotte got one run back in the top of the seventh, after Kelly left the game, with back-to-back doubles by Ahn Chi-hong and Yoon Dong-hee. However, with the bases loaded, Jeong Hoon, Lee Jung-geun and Jeon Jun-woo all struck out to end the inning.
Seventh-ranked Lotte suffered its fourth straight loss. 토토사이트