First Perfect Game in CPBL History: Ryan Verdugo
27 up, 27 down and a walk-off home run, the Uni-Lions’ LHP Ryan Verdugo has become the first pitcher to throw a perfect game in 29 years of the CPBL history.
Verdugo cruised through nine innings efficiently with only 92 pitches and a 67% strike rate against the Brothers’ lineup. Out of the total 27 outs, there were 8 strikeouts, 8 fly-outs and 11 ground-outs.
“That was a team win, everyone made plays and Kuo came up big in the end with a walk-off home run,” said Ryan Verdugo in the post-game interview.
You can not write a better script than this. #UniLions' Ryan Verdugo pitched 9 perfect innings and his teammates 郭阜林 (Kuo Fu-Lin) finished the game with a walk-off home run. Final score, Uni-Lions 1 : Brothers 0.
— CPBL STATS (@GOCPBL) October 7, 2018
Walk-Off Home Run to Secured the Perfect Game
In a hitter’s league like the CPBL, usually, this should be more than enough to win the game. However, the score was still 0-0 when Verdugo retired the final hitter in the top of the ninth, and it will be up to the Uni-Lions’ lineup to save the day.
In the bottom of the ninth, the Uni-Lions’ 郭阜林 (Kuo Fu-Lin) wasted no time, as he ripped a hanging breaking pitch over the centre field wall and secured the perfect game for Ryan Verdugo.
“I wanted to drive the ball to the outfield,” said Kuo Fu-Lin, who hit the walk-off home run in the bottom of the ninth. “Verdugo pitched so well tonight, and we must back him up as teammates.”
It is worth noting that this is Kuo’s first career walk-off home run in the CPBL. More importantly, Ryan Verdugo’s perfect game tonight could be the first “Walk-Off Perfect Game” in the world.
“Verdugo has done well tonight. It’s the perfect ending for our final home game at the Tainan Stadium,” said the Uni-Lions’ manager Huang Kan-Lin. “This is going boost the team’s confidence going into the playoffs.”
Starting from October 19, the Uni-Lions will take on the Fubon Guardians for a best-of-five series. The winner will advance to the Taiwan Series and face the Lamigo Monkeys on October 27.