September 14th, 2012
Tokyo Swallows 6
Streak: Won 1 Last 5: DWWLW
(Meiji Jingu Stadium)
For the first night of the series, the Birds have broken the spell that the DeNA Merlins had on them. Let’s hope that this continues as we need to work some hocus-pocus on the rest of the CL teams from here on out.
|W: Muranaka (9-6); L: Kuniyoshi (3-11)|
Tonight saw the Birds take a lead and hold it against their Kanto nemesis. Another change at the revolving door that is first base and still no production at that position.
|1||Aranami (CF)||1||Yuhei (CF)|
|2||Uchimura (2B)||2||Tanaka (2B)
|3||Nakamura (1B)||3||Balentien (RF)|
|4||Ramirez (LF)||4||Lastings Milledge (LF)|
|5||Tsutsugo (3B)||5||Kawabata (3B)|
|6||Kinjo (SS)||6||Matsumoto (1B)|
|7||Kajitani (SS)||7||Morioka (SS)|
|8||Takajo (C)||8||Nakamura (C)|
|9||Kuniyoshii (P)||9||Muranaka (P)|
The Birds jumped out to a quick 1-run lead in the bottom of the first. After back-to-back singles from Tanaka and Coco, Miledge walked to load the bases. Kawabata would ground out to the pitcher but he did enough to score Tanaka from third. 1 – 0 Tokyo
DeNA would answer right back in the top of the 2nd when the old, gutty vet#1, Ramirez, lead off the inning with a HR to the magical losers in left. 1 – 1
DeNA would take the lead in the top of the 4th when they continued the old-timer resurgence when old, gutty vet#2, Nakamura, hit a HR to the magical losers in left. 2 – 1 Yokohama
As I alluded to above, the Birds were immune to the curse that had befallen them at the hands of the merlins from Yokohama. The Birds wasted little time in taking the lead back from the merlins. In the bottom of the 4th, it was a bit of a roller-coaster, though. Kawabata lead off with a single to left. He was quickly eliminated, though, when Yuichi grounded into a double-play. Morioka then shocked pretty much the thousands in attendance when he hit a HR into the RF stands to tie the game. 2 – 2
But ladies and gentlemen, things only got better for the Birds. The battery for Tokyo took it upon themselves to reclaim the lead and put this game kinda/sorta out of reach of the Merlins. First, Nakamura hit a double. He was followed by a triple. Yes, you read that correctly, a TRIPLE, from Muranaka. This of course scored Nakamura and the Birds had a one run advantage. 3 – 2 Tokyo
Yuhei then hit an infield single to score Muranaka. 4 – 2 Tokyo
Yuhei would then steal second and would come around to score on a Tanaka single. 5 – 2 Tokyo
The Birds would tag on one more in the bottom of the eighth when Miyade hit a pitch-hit HR in the pitchers spot. 6 – 2 Tokyo
This meant Muranaka’s evening was over. In came Barnette to close out the ninth. He would get a quick first out and after a single by Tsuruoka, Tony induced a game-winning double-play. 6 – 2 Final
- Muranaka’s line: 8 IP, 137 pitches, 9 H, 2 HR, 6 SO, 2, BB, 2 ER
- 13, 805 folks were in attendance
- The Birds have taken over the series lead against the DeNA Merlins, 10-9-1. I don’t believe it myself, but that my friends is a fact.
- Former Jingu favorite, Rami-chan hit his 18th HR of the season
- While Morioka hit a HR for the first time in more than 3 years
- The Toyo flying Carp figured out how to beat the Chubu smurfs and are still nipping at the Birds heals for the 3rd playoff spot.
- Tomorrow will see Ishikawa on the hill for the Birds vs. I. C. Wang (I think this has to be the best name on the back of a jersey EVER) for the DeNA Merlins