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South Korean right-handed pitcher Moon Dong-ju (19-Hanhwa Eagles), who wore the Korean flag for the first time in his professional career, pitched well in his national team debut .Moon and the rest of the Hangzhou Asian Games baseball team’s starting pitching staff tossed back-to-back no-hitters in practice. Moon Dong-ju made a brief return to the mound for the Korean Armed Forces Athletic Corps (Commerce) in a practice game at Gocheok Sky Dome in Seoul on 26 June, pitching three innings of two-hit ball with five strikeouts and no walks .The 26th was the only practice game for the baseball team before they leave for Hangzhou, China, on the 28th.Some of the national team’s pitchers and hitters were slotted into the line-up for the game in order to ensure that all players get an even playing time .Moon Dong-ju, who was given the starting pitching duties for Sangmu and faced senior national team hitters, was not intimidated at all. After striking out Kim Hye-sung (Kiwoom Heroes) and Choi Ji-hoon (SSG Landers) in the first inning, he faced Noh Si-hwan, a senior member of the team. Against Noh, who is currently the KBO’s home run leader, Moon threw a change-up and struck out the side, inscribing “KKK” in the pitching record book in the first inning. Moon’s dominance continued in the second inning. He got the first batter, Kang Baek-ho (KT WIZ), to fly out to centre field and gave up a single to Moon Bo-kyung (LG Twins) to left, but then threw a fastball to Kim Hyung-joon (NC Dinos) for another strikeout. He then struck out Park Sung-seong (SSG) on an infield grounder to end the inning. In the third inning, Moon Dong-ju tested his crisis management skills when he gave up a double to left-centre to the first batter, Choi Won-jun (KIA Tigers).He forced Kim Sung-yoon (Samsung Lions) to bunt for his fifth strikeout of the game, then retired Kim Hye-sung and Choi Ji-hoon on consecutive singles to complete the planned three innings .Moon had thrown 118⅔ innings this season, short of the 120 set by the club as the ‘innings cap’, and was released from the first team on 5 May to join the Asian Games squad .His league record this season is 8-8 with 95 strikeouts and a 3.72 ERA in 23 games. Moon, who has been resting and building his body at Hanwha’s secondary training ground in Seosan, has been throwing hard since joining the national team and has sparked competition for a starting spot. Meanwhile, Kwak-Bin Kwak (Doosan Bears), who also started for the national team, pitched three innings of three-hit ball with one walk and one strikeout. Kwak only gave up two hits to Yoon Dong-hee (Lotte Giants), who batted first in the line-up, but otherwise handled the rest of the batters with ease. The ‘multi-inning’ pitchers announced ahead of the game are the ones who will start the tournament. Na Kyun-an (Lotte Giants), who took over the baton from Moon Dong-joo, and Won Tae-in (Samsung Lions), who succeeded Kwak Bin, also pitched two innings each and did not allow a run. Na gave up one hit and one walk in his two innings of work, but induced a pair of groundouts, while Won Tae-in pitched a perfect second inning, striking out six batters. The ’10-inning no-hitter’ from the starting pitching staff bodes well for the Korean baseball team, which is aiming for a fourth 스포츠토토존 consecutive Asian Games gold medal.


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