May 31st, 2011
Chiba Lotte Marines 1
Streak: Won 1 Last 5: LWLLW
(QVC Marine Field)
After their inept drubbing at the hands of Seibu on Sunday, the Swallows headed back to the scene of their lowest ebb under the previous manager to try and get the wheels back on their Inter-League campaign.
- Aoki (CF)
- Tanaka (2B)
- Whitesell (DH)
- Hatakeyama (1B)
- Balentien (RF)
- Miyamoto (3B)
- Morioka (SS)
- Aikawa (C)
- Fukuchi (LF)
- Okada (CF)
- Ishimine (LF)
- Iguchi (2B)
- Fukuura (1B)
- Satozaki (C)
- Kiyota (RF)
- Omatsu (DH)
- Imae (3B)
- Takahama (SS)
Tateyama started for the birds but didn’t get off to the best of starts in the 1st. He gave up what would be his only walk of the game to the second man he faced, which he followed up by allowing a single for Iguchi. A sacfly was then all that was needed from Fukuura to bring home the go-ahead run from third to make it 1-0 Chiba.
After that both starters were firmly in control of the game, and it looked like it would be the same old story for the impotent Tokyo offence as they managed just two hits through the first five innings.
But it was in the top of the 6th when the Swallows would get the kind of break that has deserted them of late. With two outs and the prospect of putting up yet another zero on the board, Tanaka hit a routine grounder to short. Only Takahama completely fluffed the throw to first allowing Tanaka to make it safely to second. Whitesell then worked a walk to occupy first before Hatakeyama hit one to the wall in left, scoring the two Tokyo men to put the score at 2-1 Tokyo.
With Tateyama holding onto the slender lead through to the end of the 8th, the Swallows then added an insurance run in the top of the 9th. Facing Marines’ reliever Itoh, Balentien got his second hit of the evening, a double off the rightfield fence. After Miyamoto flew out for the second out of the inning, Morioka hit an infield single to put men on the corners. Aikawa, back from his time on the bench (thank f*ck), then blooped one up the middle to score the big man from third for 3-1 Tokyo.
Lim took the mound for only the third time this Inter-League campaign in the bottom of the 9th, and despite completely losing the strike zone for a while as he gave up back to back one-out walks, he recovered his poise to bring home the crucial win with a 3-1 Tokyo Final.
Tateyama took the win (8IP/4H/4K/1BB/1ER) to put his record at 4-1/1.58. Now if we could only find a way to clone him.
Lim notched his 10th save of the year and his ERA now sits at 1.17.
Tokyo outhit Chiba 6-4 with Balentien (.358) the only Swallows player to manage more than the one hit.
After Araki’s pretty lousy performance on Sunday at shortstop, Morioka made some pretty impressive plays in the field tonight, which combined with the hustle he showed for his 9th inning infield single, should hopefully mean he gets a run in the team in Kawabata’s absence.
So let us hope it’s onwards and upwards for Tokyo as they return to Homeshoppingchannelwindyuglyconcretebowlbythebay tomorrow evening for the last game of the series.