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19th Asian Games: South Korea Takes Gold With 2-0 Win Against Chinese Taipei; Japan Third

 Leif Skodnick - World Baseball Network  |    Oct 8th, 2023 2:51pm EDT

By Julian Guilarte
World Baseball Network

South Korea beat Chinese Taipei 2-0 in the gold medal game of the 19th Asian Games at Shaoxing Baseball and Softball Sports Culture Center in the District of Hangzhou, Zhejiang Province, China. 

The game was a pitcher’s duel with South Korea scoring the only two runs in the second inning against Chinese Taipei starting pitcher Yu-Min Lin. 

South Korea first baseman Bog-yeong Moon hit a lead-off double, and shortstop Juwon Kim drove him in with a sacrifice fly. Catcher Hyung-jun Kim hit a single and Left fielder Seong-yoon Kim hit a double. Hyung-jun Kim scored their second run with a wild pitch from Yu-Min Lin. Yu-Min Lin pitched five innings giving up five hits, two runs and striking out five.

South Korea starter Dong-ju Moon threw six shutout innings allowing three hits and striking out seven. The bullpen closed it down with scoreless innings from relievers Ji-Min Choi, Yeong-hyun Park, and Woo-suk Go. Woo-suk Go got the save and the final out of the game was made by pinch hitter Min-sih Lin with a ground out to second baseman Hye-seong Kim.

Korea won their fourth gold medal in a row, the most in the Asian Games. Korea won their sixth total medal, also the most in the Asian Games. 

Chinese Taipei hasn’t won the Asian Games since 2006, which was their lone title. With the win, the players on South Korea are now exempt from serving in the military for 18 months.

Los Angeles Dodgers prospect pitcher Hyun-seok Jang, 19, will now get to pitch with the Dodgers without any interruptions, per KBO ESPN insider Daniel Kim. The Dodgers signed him to a deal out of high school on August 10 with a signing bonus of $900,000. 

Third Place Game: Japan 4, China 3

Japan won 4-3 against China in the third-place game at the Asian Games. 

Designated hitter Jie Cao had an RBI single to get China on the board first against Japan’s starting pitcher Makoto Hori. 

Japan took the lead in the second with two runs off China’s starting pitcher Ningji Li. Right fielder Seifu Suzuki brought in two runs with a single that scored catcher Takehiro Tsujino and designated hitter Toshifumi Kaneko.

China scored two more runs off Makoto Hori in the third to retake the lead at 3-2. Left fielder YongKang Kou hit a two-run home run that brought in center fielder Pei Liang. 

Makoto Hori pitched four innings and gave up three runs for Japan. Ningji Li gave up two runs in four innings for China. 

The game remained locked at 3-2 until Japan scored two runs off China’s reliever Xiang Wang in the eighth. Pinch hitter Ryuga Ihara hit an RBI single to tie the game at three. Japan’s shortstop Hisaya Nammoku hit a grounder to China’s shortstop Jin Yang who made an error that brought in Ryuga Ihara to give Japan a 4-3 lead. 

Katsutoshi Satake got the save for Japan pitching two scoreless innings with four strikeouts. The last out was made by Jin Yang who flew out to center fielder Motoki Mukoyama. Japan won their fifth bronze medal since the Asian Games was established in 1994.  

Japan manager Akio Ishii will be replaced by Hirokazu Ibata. Ibata will also manage the U-15 team per the Yakyu Cosmopolitan.  

Japan, Korea, Chinese Taipei, and Australia will play in the Asia Professional Baseball Championship from November 16-19 Tokyo Domo in Japan. This is a U-24 event and it’s Australia’s first time participating in it. 

Japan, Korea, Chinese Taipei, China, Thailand, Philippines, Pakistan, and Palestine will participate in the Asian Baseball Championship from December 3-9 in Taiwan at the Taipei Dome.

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Leif Skodnick - World Baseball Network