April 29th, 2009
Tokyo Yakult Swallows 7
Chunichi Dragons 1
Streak: Won 2 Last 5: LLLWW
Shohei Tateyama pitched a complete game, limiting the Dragons to a solitary run as Yakult’s good form against Chunichi continued in Nagoya. Tateyama gave up seven hits over the distance, striking out five and walking none for his second win of the season. It was the first time in four years Shohei has pitched a compete game for a win, and his ERA now stands at 1.761.
The only lineup change for the birds was Aaron Guiel coming in for Takeuchi in rightfield and batting fifth.
In truth it was a fairly comfortable victory for Tokyo, and they took the lead in the top of the 3rd inning against Chunichi starter Asao. Two walks and a D’Antonia double scored two runs and made it 2-0 Tokyo.
Chunichi scored their only run of the game in the 5th, with consecutive doubles from Fuji and Oyama scoring a run to narrow the lead to 2-1 Tokyo.
But the Swallows would then put the game out of sight as they scored in every inning from the 6th.
6th: D’Antona struck out before Guiel and Kawashima hit consecutive singles. A wild pitch allowed them to advance into scoring position. Aikawa then reached base on a Tony Blanco error, the runners advanced and it was 3-1 Tokyo. Next man up Tanaka hit a sacfly to centre to score another run and make it 4-1 Tokyo.
7th: Fukuchi hit a leadoff double off reliever Saitoh and then Miyamoto moved him to third on a groundout. A passed ball allowed the speedster to come home and extend the lead to 5-1 Tokyo.
8th: Kawashima worked a one out walk against Dragons reliever Nelson. An Aikawa single then put men on the corners before another ball escaped the catcher and Aikawa advanced to second. Tanaka struck out and then pitcher Tateyama poked one through the infield to left and it was 6-1 Tokyo.
9th: A two out D’Antona double (after which he was replaced with pinch runner Noguchi) followed by a Guiel double capped the scoring at 7-1 Final.
All in all a convincing display all round, with Guiel, D’Antona and Kawashima all having two hit games. Aoki and Tanaka were the only guys not to join in the hit parade, though Tanaka did hit an RBI sacfly.
Today’s results mean that Tokyo are in a two way tie for 2nd in the CL, 2.5 games behind leaders Yomiuri. The CL so far this year is proving to be almost as open as the PL.
The two teams meet again tomorrow night, same time same place for the final game of the series.