Mar 29th 2013, vs Hanshin

March 29th, 2013

Hanshin Tigers 9  

Tokyo Swallows 3

Streak: Lost 1  Last 5: L

(Jingu Stadium)

The real season is here in Japan!

Enough of the Spring Training games and enough of the WBC (that really fizzled when Japan and the US squads were eliminated on the same weekend). On with the games that count.

And, unfortunately, this one did.

W: Messenger (1-0; 4.5 ERA) L: Hirai (0-1; 13.5 ERA)

Nishioka (2B)1Tanaka (2B)
Yamato (CF)2Ueda (CF)
Toritani (SS)3Milledge (LF)
Arai (1B)4Hatakeyama (1B)
Fukudome (RF)5Matsui (RF)
Murton (LF)6Miyamoto (3B)
Conrad (3B)7Morioka (SS)
Fujii (C)8Nakamura (C)
Messenger (P)9Tateyama (P)

The high-priced Hanshin line-up did some damage tonight. They struck early and often ending with 9 runs on 17 hits. They were helped along by some erratic play by the Swallows.

The Tigers scored two runs in the first thanks to a bobbled play by Tanaka at 2nd. 2 – 0 Tigers

Hanshin added to their lead in the 5th when Fukudome hit a single to left scoring a run. 3 – 0 Tigers

The Swallows would finally get on the board in their half of the 5th. Messenger loaded the bases and walked Tanaka for the first run. Ueda hit a sac-fly to score the second run. The Swallows final run came when Toritani couldn’t handle a hard grounder by Milledge. 3 – 3

The game (in the eyes of Swallows fans) went downhill from there. The Tigers added another run in the 6th to take a 4 – 3  lead.

They would add 3 more in the 7th and another 2 runs in the 8th. Sealing the game and giving the Tigers a 9 – 3 Win.



  • 28,169 were in attendance to watch this Opening night game.
  • It lasted 4 hours and 2 minutes
  • Messenger is the first foreign Hanshin pitcher to record an opening day game victory since Gene Bacque in 1965.  Source:
  • Here is something to lift the spirits of all the loyal Tokyo supporters: Umpire Strike Calls (Leslie Nelson)
  • Tomorrow will see Iwata on the hill against Ishikawa
About Scott

Scott is an avid fan of the underdog. He spent his childhood cheering for the Chicago White Sox and hating all teams from New York. Once he moved to Tokyo, he quickly directed this same hatred toward the tenants of the Tokyo Dome. Thus began his support of the Swallows (and anyone playing against the indoor Tokyo team).
In his mind, there is not a better place to be than at Jingu stadium watching the Swallows from the bleachers, drinking a nice cold drink, and cheering along with the extremely knowledgeable Swallows fans.

  • Shocking start. About the only Swallow who didn’t shit the bed at some point in this one was Milledge, who went 2 for 4 with some superb plays in the outfield.

  • Pingback: Apr 4th 2013, @ Hiroshima()