May 5th 2013, @ Hanshin

May 5th, 2013

Tokyo Swallows 7

Hanshin Tigers 5

Streak: Won 1 Last 5: LLLLW

(Koshien)

Holy crap, this has been a streaky last couple of weeks.

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W: Ishiyama (1-0; 3.38 ERA)
L: Kubo (2-2; 2.81)
S; Yamamoto (5S; 1.93)

And with all the injuries we’re dealing with right now, the fun ain’t gonna stop.

TokyoOrderHanshin
Hiyane (C)1Nishioka (2B)
Tanaka (2B)2Yamato (CF)
Milledge (LF)3Toritani (SS)
Balentien (RF)4Murton (LF)
Hatakeyama (1B)5R. Arai (3B)
Miyamoto (3B)6T. Arai (1B)
Morioka (SS)7Ito (RF)
Nakamura (C)8Fujii (C)
Yagi (P)9Fujinami (P)

After losing four on the trot, Tokyo finally got its act back together. Yagi was on the mound for the birds, and he was the first penguin this series to not allow at least one run in the first inning–crazy as that may seem.

Yagi lasted a bit more than six innings and kept the birds competitive.

Yagi lasted a bit more than six innings and kept the birds competitive.

In fact, he didn’t allow a run until the seventh when he was relieved after giving up a three run jack to Arai, Sr. after having gifted two walks.

But I digress.

Your Swallows were already in the lead by that point.

Let’s rewind. In the top of the fifth, Hatakeyama teed things up with a double to left, and Morioka brought him home one out later. Nakamura then cleared the bases with a homer to left.

3-0 Tokyo.

But as mentioned earlier, the score was soon tied thanks to granddaddy Arai.

But the see-saw action continued in the top of the eighth when Nakamura’s lead-off single was followed by a two-out Tanaka swipe to left, and then a Millege double in the same direction.

5-3 Tokyo.

But Arai the younger came through with a dinger of his own to level the score once again in the bottom of the eighth (Ishiyama pitching).

Level at five.

But Miwa and Ueda came through with back-to-back two-out walks after Hatakeyama and Morioka had walked to put the birds ahead by two once again.

7-5 Tokyo.

Number 52 put the birds ahead in the top of the fifth.

Number 52 put the birds ahead in the top of the fifth.

And despite allowing two hits and a runner on third, Yamamoto eventually closed out the inning and secured Tokyo’s first win since last Monday.

7-5 Final.

Yagi didn’t factor into the final decision, but he threw six and 0/3 innings while striking out four and walking three. He was credited with three runs on five hits and one homer. His ERA budged slightly to 2.89.

Roman allowed a hit when he relieved Yagi, but he eventually closed out the inning without any additional damage. His ERA eased to 3.98.

Ishiyama ended up recording his first pro victory despite allowing two runs off of three hits (including a homer) and a bean ball. His ERA bloomed to 3.38 in the process.

Yamamoto got the save, but it wasn’t easy. He allowed two hits, including a double, but eventually got out of the top of the ninth with his two run cushion intact. His ERA budged slightly to 1.93.

The MVP on offense tonite was Nakamura who went 2-4 with a two-run homer (his second this year) and a single.

Up next, Tokyo host Chunichi Monday-Wednesday at Jingu Stadium. Yes, you read that right. The series starts tomorrow (Monday). All games start at 6PM.

Game Notes:

  • Hiyane struck out twice today. Hopefully he gets some more time in the batter’s box moving forward.
  • Balentien struck out swinging three times.
  • Hatakeyama got on base three times (BB, 2B, BB).
  • Morioka also reached base twice (RBI 1B, BB).
  • 46,185 folks had tickets to this game.
  • The game lasted three hours and 28 minutes.
  • Hanshin currently leads the season series 6-3.
  • Hanshin’s Fujinami was credited with three runs and didn’t factor into the final decision.
In what we hope turns into a long-term habit, Miwa drove in the winning run.

In what we hope turns into a long-term habit, Miwa drove in the winning run.

About Christopher Pellegrini

Christopher is a budding sabermetrician and long-time supporter of Tokyo’s more lovable team, the Swallows. He has publicly volunteered, several times, that he plans to buy the team at some point in the future. When he finally runs the joint, it is likely that he will fine any player who swings at the first pitch or sac bunts (unless it’s a pitcher, of course). Follow him on Twitter: @chrispellegrini