May 15th, 2014
Tokyo Swallows 11
Yomiuri Giants 4
Streak: Won 3 Last 5: LLWWW
It is my great pleasure to type the following sentence. The Swallows swept the Giants at the Tokyo Dome. Like the previous night the Swallows got it done both on offense and pitching. The Giants shuffled their lineup including debuting Frederich Cepeda in the four hole, but ultimately the Swallows juggernaut rolled on.
|W: Kiya (3-2)
L: Otake (5-2)
|1||Tetsuto Yamada (2B)||1||Yasuyuki Kataoka (2B)|
|2||Wataru Hiyane (CF)||2||Tetsuya Matsumoto (CF)|
|3||Shingo Kawabata (3B)||3||Hayato Sakamoto (SS)|
|4||Wladimir Balentien (LF)||4||Frederich Cepeda (LF)|
|5||Yuhei (Takai) (RF)||5||Shinnosuke Abe (C)|
|6||Kazuhiro Hatakeyama (1B)||6||Shuichi Murata (3B)|
|7||Takahiro Araki (SS)||7||José Lopez (1B)|
|8||Yuhei Nakamura (C)||8||Hisayoshi Ch*no (RF)|
|9||Ryohei Kiya (P)||9||Kan Otake (P)|
The Swallows drew first blood with with a double-bunt-groundout combo to start the game. 1-0 Swallows
The next inning Yuhei lead off with a single and Hatakeyama homered to stretch the lead. 3-0 Swallows
Meanwhile Kiya was bending but not breaking through the first two innings. Kiya finally allowed a run in the third inning on a two out double to Sakamoto which Cepeda punished with a single. 3-1 Swallows
Otake stabilized slightly although he kept giving up runners. But the next run was scored by the Giants. Sakamoto got a one out double in the fifth and Cepeda drew a walk from Kiya. Kiya bounced one past Abe to advance the runners, and Abe managed to cash in a run off of a ground out. 3-2 Swallows
With the score closing in and Kiya not looking like he was in complete control there was some doubt whether the Swallows could get the elusive sweep. Those thoughts were quickly dashed as the Swallows finally managed to break Otake. Hatakeyama and Araki opened the sixth inning with back-to-back singles and Nakamura quickly cashed them in with double. 5-2 Swallows That ended Otake’s night, and the Giants handed the ball to Kasahara. The Swallows got an insurance run after Kiya advanced Nakamura over with a bunt, and Yamada grounded out to first allowing Nakamura to come home. 6-2 Swallows
After the Swallows widened the gap, Kiya settled down and pitched efficient innings in the sixth and seventh. The Swallows handed the ball to Iwahashi in the eighth and the rookie’s unorthodox form baffled the Giants for a 1-2-3 inning with 2 Ks.
On offense, salt was poured into the wound in the seventh via a Yuhei two run homer off of Takagi. 8-2 Swallows Finally, insult was added to injury in the ninth as the Giants sent out Tsuchida to make up for his bad debut last night. Tsuchida’s second game was as bad as his first. Kawabata lead off the inning with a home run. 9-2 Swallows Tsuchida then proceeded to load the bases on two hits and a walk while getting only one out. That set the stage for Nakamura to break the young pitcher. Nakamura delivered a single that scored two runs and got Tsuchida yanked from the game with tears in his eyes. 11-2 Swallows
Kyuko came out to close out the game in the ninth and allowed two extra runs. But we won’t dwell too much on that for tonight. 11-4 Swallows FINAL
- The Swallows had 15+ hits for the third night in a row.
- Hatakeyama came one triple short of the cycle. He ended the night with a 4-for-5 /1 2B / 1 HR / 2 R / 2 RBI line.
- Once again every starter except the pitcher got a hit.
- The Swallows currently hold the team Triple Crown in the offensive categories in NPB. (Runs scored, home runs, and team batting average.)
- The Swallows will head to Nagoya over the weekend for a three game set against the Dragons. The Dragons are coming off of a sweep of the BayStars and hold a three game lead over the Swallows for fourth place. One hopes the Swallows can keep the momentum going against a new team.
- The first game will send Chris Narveson to the mound. Narveson is still looking for his first NPB win despite pitching well in his last few starts.