Korean Baseball Organization (KBO) ace Yang Hyun-jong (양현종) of the KIA Tigers tied the KBO’s all-time record for most career starts in his fifth attempt.
On June 26, Yang started a home game against the Hanwha Eagles at Kia Champions Field in Gwangju, giving up two runs on five hits over six innings.
With a 6-2 lead in the seventh inning, Yang handed the mound over to Im Ki-young with the game-winning run.
As KIA went on to win 12-4, Yang finally earned his sixth win of the season and 165th career victory.
With 163 of his 165 wins coming in starts, Yang has moved into a tie for first place on the all-time wins list with Song Jin-woo (formerly of the Hanwha Eagles).
Song Jin-woo, the all-time wins leader (210), has 163 starts and 47 relief wins. Unlike Song, who alternated between starting and finishing, Yang has been a regular starter since his debut in 2007 and has only won two relief games.
Since winning his 162nd career start against the SSG Landers on May 6, Yang has lost three of his last four outings.
He has struggled in that span, allowing 17 runs (16 earned) in 21 1/3 innings, and finally broke his long waiting streak today when he returned to the first team after being sent to the second team for an adjustment on the 16th.
Yang gave up two runs in the top of the third inning on a double to Moon Hyun-bin and a single to left-center to Noh Si-hwan.
Trailing 0-2 in the bottom of the inning, the KIA bats got a run back when Choi Won-jun singled to right, Park Chan-ho walked to put runners on second and third, and Kim Do-young grounded out to shortstop.
The team then scored five runs in the bottom of the fourth inning to help Yang set the record.
After back-to-back singles by Choi Hyung-woo and Socrates Brito put runners on first and second with no outs, Kim Sun-bin stepped up to the plate and lined a single to left to tie the game at 2-2.
Kim Tae-gun followed with a single to left, Choi Won-joon doubled to right-center and Park Chan-ho followed with a single to center to score four runs in quick succession.
After Hanwha cut the deficit to just one run in the top of the seventh inning on Moon Hyun-bin’s RBI single with the bases loaded, KIA went on a batting rampage after the pitching change, combining six hits, including two doubles, with one walk to score another five runs and clip the eagles’ wings.
No. 9 hitter Choi Won-jun had three hits and three RBIs, and No. 1 hitter Park Chan-ho had two hits and two RBIs to provide extraordinary support for Yang Hyun-jong.
For the third time this season, the KIA bats scored 12 runs on 18 hits, including a hit by every starter in the lineup. 토토