In a battle of the young guns to lead Korean baseball, neither was smiling.
Lee Yi-ri (KIA Tigers) and Moon Dong-joo (Hanwha Eagles) took the mound on Friday at the Hanwha Life Eagles Park in Daejeon.안전놀이터
Lee throws the fastest ball among left-handed pitchers in Korea, while the right-handed Moon Dong-ju has one of the best fastballs among Korean pitchers, both left and right-handed.
Moon made waves last month when he became the first Korean pitcher to throw a fastball over 160 kilometers per hour (160.1 mph) in a game against KIA.
The matchup between the two pitchers was highly anticipated before the game, but it ended without a winner as Lee exited early in the second inning and Moon allowed the tying run to score.
Hanwha’s Moon Dong-ju
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Lee, who breezed through the first inning with two strikeouts, gave up a walk to Noh Si-hwan with the bases loaded in the bottom of the inning and was then hit in the head by a pitch that hit Kim In-hwan and resulted in an automatic ejection for a head shot.
The KBO requires pitchers to automatically leave the mound when they hit a batter in the head with a fastball to protect players. There have been four headshot ejections this year.
Kim Ki-hoon, a lefty with a heavy, fastball, hurriedly took Lee’s baton, but immediately gave up two runs on three hits and a walk. Both runs were Lee’s own.
Moon Dong-ju put runners on second and third with a single and walk in the first, then threw a curveball to Choi Hyung-woo with two outs, who hit a single to right for a run.
After two strikeouts in the second inning to settle down, Moon gave up a hit, a walk, and a wild pitch to put runners on second and third with one out, then threw a low fastball to Ko Jong-wook for a two-run double to right center.
Moon, who made it through the fourth inning with the help of the fielders’ defense, gave up three runs on five hits and three walks in four innings. He also left with two wild pitches and a walk.
Lee topped out at 153 kilometers per hour on his fastball. Moon’s average velocity surpassed Lee’s at 154 kilometers per hour, and his fastball was 155.8 kilometers per hour, according to PTS by Sports2i, the KBO’s official stats provider.