March 4th, 2009
Tokyo Yakult Swallows 4
Hokkaido Nippon Ham Fighters 5
Streak: Lost 1 Last 3: WWL
The highlight of this game, from our perspective anyway, was Ishikawa. He started, threw only 41 pitches and retired all 12 batters he faced. Guiel provided the only offense of the game to that point with a solo home run in the top of the fourth. Tokyo went up 2-0 when
Miyamoto scored on a Noguchi triple.
Ishikawa was replaced by Yoshikawa at the beginning of the 5th, and things got ugly very quickly. Yoshikawa gave up three successive hits to start the inning, the third of which was a blast into the bleachers in left. Tokyo 2-3 Hokkaido.
Maruyama pitched the sixth for Tokyo and didn’t allow anyone to score in his second appearance of the pre-season. However, the home team added another run in the bottom of the seventh off of Tokyo’s Oshimoto which put them up by two runs.
Tokyo tied it up in the top of the 9th with a nice little two-out rally which was partly courtesy of an error by Hokkaido’s pitcher. With two men on, Yuuichi doubled to right which scored both Hatakeyama and Tanaka.
But with Takai on the mound for his first appearance of the year, it wasn’t meant to be. With two men on and two outs, Hokkaido’s center/left fielder, Morimoto, came through with a game winning double after killing rallies with weak hits in both the 5th and 7th innings.
Final score: Tokyo 4 – 5 Hokkaido