Monday Bullets is a feature in which Tsubamegun writers (mostly Kozo) gather random news, thoughts, images, movies, etc. during the week and publish them for off day consumption.
Yet another Monday game pushes this feature to Tuesday. A lot of rain has been falling in Tokyo which cancelled the two game series against the Marines, so it was looking to be a slow bullet week. But I finally managed to get my fellow Tsubamegun writers to contribute some bullets, so look out for those this week.
- The two cancelled games have been re-scheduled for the 23rd (Monday) and 24th (Tuesday). Both games will have 18:00 starts, tickets will go on sale to the general public on Saturday.
- After two weeks of zero roster moves, Hatakeyama’s injury (a bit more on that later) forced the Swallows to make some moves. Hatake and Fujii were removed from the active roster on Monday, and Noguchi and Iwamura were called up in their stead.
- Hatake felt a pop in his left hammy when he ran a bit too hard on Sunday’s game. He was apparently checked out at a hospital yesterday, but wasn’t able to get an MRI so the exact nature of his injury is not yet know. He is scheduled to get an MRI today, and hopefully we’ll find out that the Swallows’ RBI leader won’t be out too long.
- In happier news Tony Barnette’s return seems imminent. Tony will join the first team as early as tomorrow, but most sources have him joining the team in Hokkaido on the 14th. The most likely candidate to be sent down is sophmore Taichi Ishiyama who has been the model of ineffective. No import considerations need to be made as Balentien and Narveson are the only imports currently on the Swallows’ roster.
- Speaking of Balentien the reigning NPB homerun kings has been slumping recently. Coco has gone 5-for-34 in the last 10 games of Interleague after starting the first 4 games on a 8-for-16 tear. Coco apparently has not been happy starting as the DH, asking to play the field for night games. The numbers back him up, as he’s gone 1-for-19 as a DH. The Swallows haven’t accommodated his request for fear of aggravating his left Achilles injury.
- Apparently Ogawa is considering giving poor Hiroyasu Tanaka starts at first base to cover Hatake’s absence. Tanaka made his third base debut earlier this year, why not make his first base debut this year as well? Hiroyasu has never played first base, even as an amateur. Let’s see if he can pick it up faster than Coco.
- All Star fan balloting started this week and I managed to get some comments from my fellow Tsubamegun writers about their ballots.
- Garrett says “Are the Carp still good? Doesn’t matter. Even when they suck, everyone in Hiroshima and surrounding domains votes everyone on the roster into whatever spots are not filled with Hanshin players.That’s exactly why All-Star voting is stupid. The All-Star Games (have they added a fourth or fifth this year?) are even stupider. Boring, meaningless pseudo-games with no bearing on anything. Watching practice would be more interesting in terms of competition.
Maybe they could add a sac-bunting contest, in which the competitors could dive head-first for first base. Or cut out the nonsense and get to what’s really important: a dance-off between mascots.”
- League leaders tend to well the fan votes, the effect amplifies if you have a fanbase like Hiroshima or Hanshin. You can see the effect work in our favor from this report from when we lead the league mid-season in 2011.
- Meanwhile Dave sent me his ballot…
- I wonder if Dave lost his picture of Shingo Takatsu.
- My ballot for the CL All Star team, or the First Half All-CL team looks like this…
- The Swallows are represented by Nakamura, Yamada, and Balentien. Yuhei, Hatake, and Kawabata also deserve All Star nods in my opinion, but they don’t beat out the listed counterparts from other teams.
- For the record, this year the NPB will have two All Star games one at Seibu Dome and one at Koshien.
- This week’s funny image features Tsubakuro choking out a frog, because… WHY THE HELL NOT?