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Chan-Ho Screwed up, Byung-Hyun Earned 16 Saves

Posted September. 11, 2001 07:33,   


Facing the St. Louis Cardinals, Park Chan-Ho (28, LA Dodgers) could not focus on the game for many reasons.

First of all, he was distracted from the pouring rain during the game. The sky was covered with the dark clouds before the game, and it started to rain after the bottom of the first inning at the Busch Stadium.

Park, who threw 23 pitches in the first, expressed his fighting spirit to the coaching staffs after 2 hours 4 minutes rain delay, saying ``I will move up the mound again.`` But it was so tough for him to normally throw a pitch with his lapsed shoulder.

On the contrary, Cardinals Manager Tony La Russa excluded Matthew Morris, and called up Hackman from the bullpen to the mound.

It was at the bottom of fourth that Park Chan-Ho devastatingly failed on the mind-control. After two outs, Cardinals Fernando Vina reached on a bunt single with Dodger first baseman Carros`s error, who tried to touch a runner, not stepping on the base, and failed to do. Shaken by the absurd error, Park allowed two straight hits and a hit by a pitch, and collapsed when Edmonds blasted the grand slam over the center field wall.

After the game, Park said, ``I threw a bat for complaining a strike judge. I think that it influenced the first base umpire, who declared a safe on Vina.`` In the midst of a disturbed atmosphere, Park captured 7 strikeouts for 3 and 2/3 innings, but recorded his 10th loss (13 wins) with 8 hits including 2 homers and 7 ER. His ERA rose to 3.23. Park broke the 200 strikeouts barrier, which was shadowed by the team`s 1-8 loss.

The Dodgers slipped to the third place in the wild card race, 1.5 behind the NL West second place San Francisco.

Meanwhile, Kim Byung-Hyun (22, Arizona Diamondbacks), who had earned a relief victory in the previous game, saved the game with no hit and no ER for 1 and 1/3 innings in game with San Diego Padres. It was his second straight save. Kim recorded 5 wins, 5 losses and 16 saves with 2.91 ERA.

Kim Sang-Soo ssoo@donga.com