Choo Shin-soo of the Cleveland Indians, 28, has hit safely in three consecutive games, showing he has found his rhythm this season.
In a 6-4 home loss to the Detroit Tigers Sunday, the rightfielder went 1-2 with two walks and two runs scored as the No. 3 batter in the lineup.
In his fourth at-bat in the bottom of the eighth inning and the Indians trailing 6-3, Choo hit a fastball up the middle timed at 159 kilometers per hour from pitcher Joel Zumaya, one of the most powerful pitchers in the U.S. majors.
After reaching third base after teammate Travis Hafner hit a double, Choo made it home thanks to Austin Kearns sacrifice fly. He also scored in the sixth after getting to first on a walk after Kearns single.
Choo struck out in the first but got to first base in the fourth with a walk. His batting average improved from .307 to .311 (32-103).
Cleveland lost its fifth consecutive game, however. With a record of 10-18, the team was stuck at fourth in the American League Central Division and led the Kansas City Royals (11-20) by just half a game.
Pitcher Kim Byung-hyun, who failed to make the San Francisco Giants 40-man roster in February, has joined the Orange County (California) Flyers of the Golden Baseball League. The Flyers said on its homepage that it recruited veteran pitcher Kim, who has experienced a World Series victory. Details of his contract were not released.
Kim sought to return to the U.S. majors this season, and was invited to an exhibition game after signing a minor league contract with the Giants. He left the team after failing to make its 40-man roster.
The Golden Baseball League has two divisions of five teams each. The Chico (California) Outlaws have signed Eri Yoshida of Japan, 18, the first female to be drafted by a pro baseball in her country.