August 9th, 2009
Tokyo Yakult Swallows 0
Streak: Lost 5 Last 5: LLLLL
Well, for the second day in a row we were treated to a bit of a pitcher’s duel. And for the second day in a row, a Kamei home run sent Tokyo packing.
Yoshinori (5-6, 3.44 ERA) had a great start for the birds, lasting seven inning, throwing 101 pitches, giving up six hits and two earned runs, striking out seven and walking none.
But those two earned runs were all it took.
Takahashi took the mound for Yomiuri and had an even more impressive outing given that he didn’t allow any runs to cross home plate.
The Swallows got a couple of guys on base on three different occasions, but they were never able to capitalize. Additionally, all of the continued bunting, and how predictable Takada’s moves are, had even the commentators on the evening news laughing.
Aoki was the only player with a multi-hit game for Tokyo, and no other player reached base more than once.
Matsuoka (2.79) pitched the eighth for his 39th appearance of the season.
The fatal blow occurred in the seventh after Ramirez reached base on a two out single, and then Kamei belted another one over the wall in right field (he had yesterday’s walk off homer as well). 2-0 Yomiuri.
So that’s five losses in a row, and the team looks a bit listless on offense at the moment. That is in no small part due to Takada bunting like there’s no tomorrow and making questionable choices for pinch hitters.
Open comment to the manager: you have a very competent team in terms of offense. Stop tinkering. You had reasonable success with it during the first half of the year, but you’ve long since lost your touch. Stop being so predictable (bunts, steals, hit and runs, etc.) because it’s starting to get embarrassing. Also, in a tight game, don’t put in someone who you didn’t feel was good enough to play during the first half of the season. Please trust your players for once.
As usual, I should have raised it a few games ago, so it’s definitely due (apologies, Flick, for the delay):
TAKADA COUNT: 4
Now the birds have a day off to regroup before they face another team they can’t beat, the Yokohama Baystars, for a three game series at Jingu from Tuesday to Thursday this week.
See you there!