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Chan-Ho’s Pungent Initiation Ceremony

Posted April. 03, 2002 09:09,   


New Park Chan-Ho (29. Texas Rangers) and new team-color of Texas were expected, but the results were disappointing.

Park fell apart due to lack of control, and so-called Major League’s strongest, Texas’ central pitching line, was helpless. No change could be seen in last year’s American league team with the most lost points.

The season’s opening match with Oakland Athletics, which took place at Oakland’s Network Associates Coliseum stadium, was just one game, but it was the one that predicted dark future of Park and Texas in this season.

In his debut match in the American League, Park embraced the first defeat with 2 homeruns, 9 hits, and 6 lost points during 5 innings.

Park walked into the game, which was a night-match in chilly weather, with taping on his right thigh. It proves that he has not fully recovered from the thigh-injury at the practice match with Minnesota Twins on the 28th, last month. His ball was flat and uncontrolled, probably because he could not put pressure on the right leg, which is the central-axis in pitching. Although no four-ball was given out on the day, the ball kept driving into the middle due to failure of corner-works.

Things seemed uneasy from the beginning. Crisis came as soon as the game began, as the first and second bases were occupied with a hit and a dead-ball. Fortunately, Oakland’s No.3 Hatteberg was led into a double play, and the first inning was guarded without losing a point. However in the second inning, Chavez hit a one-point homerun in the right side of the stadium. Also in the third inning, Park allowed a two-point homerun to Justice, following Giambi and Menechino’s consecutive hits. The hit balls were all either right in the middle or in central-high course. Uncontrolled 146 kilometer-per-hour straight balls were just too easy for American League’s batters.

Out of the 9 hits on the day, Park allowed 6 to left-sided batters, completely exposing his jinx with lefties.

On the other hand, last year’ American League pitcher with most-wins, left-handed Mark Mulder, seemed contrary with perfect control and diverse curves.

Losing by 3-8, Texas’ fancy batting line that connects through Alex Rodriguez – Juan Gonzalez – Raphael Palmeiro – Ivan Rodriguez only retrieved 2 in-field hits.

Park, who ruined his reputation in the first match in a Texan uniform, is to appear before home-fans for the first time during the match with Anaheim Angels, which will take place at Texas’ Arlington stadium at 10 a.m. on the 7th.

Sang-Soo Kim ssoo@donga.com