Jun 30th 2016, @ Hiroshima

June 30th, 2016

TS Logo 150x transparentTokyo Swallows 4Hiroshima Carp logo clean

Hiroshima Carp 2

Streak: Won 1  Last 5: WWLLW

(Mazda Zooooom Zoooooooooom Stadium)

The Swallows managed to put a stop to the Carp’s massive winning streak thanks to some strong pitching (?!) and some timely hitting.

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W: Muranaka (5-2)
L: Nakamura (1-1)
S: Akiyoshi (2)

 Swallows Carp
1Keiji Ohbiki (SS)1Kosuke Tanaka (SS)
2Tomotaka Sakaguchi (CF)2Ryosuke Kikuchi (2B)
3Shingo Kawabata (3B)3Yoshihiro Maru (CF)
4Tetsuto Yamada (2B)4Hector Luna (3B)
5Wladimir Balentien (LF)5Seiya Suzuki (RF)
6Yuhei (Takai) (RF)6Takahiro Arai (1B)
7Akihisa Nishida (1B)7Ko Shimozuru (LF)
8Yuhei Nakamura (C)8Yoshitaka Isomura (C)
9Kyohei Muranaka (P)9Kyohei Nakamura (P)

The most interesting thing about tonight’s pitching matchup going into the game was the similarity between both pitchers’ names Kyohei Nakamura vs. Kyohei Nakamura. Muranaka was making his first start since 2014, and Nakamura had been an unspectacular starter for the Carp without a decision since the end of May.

 The Swallows struck first in the second inning. Yamada lead off the inning with a 12 pitch walk. Yamada advanced to second on a Coco ground out and came home on a Yuhei single. 1-0 Swallows

Muranaka allowed runners through the first three innings but also got out of a bunch of jums thanks to his four strikeouts in those innings.

The offense got to Nakamura in the fourth. Kawabata lead off with a double and Yamada and Coco loaded the bases with back-to-back singles. Two runs scored on a Yuhei single. 3-0 Swallows Nakamura (our catcher) reloaded the bases with a single and Obiki got a two out singe to bring in an extra run. 4-0 Swallows

The Carp got one back in the bottom of the inning after a lead off double by Maru became an one out sac fly for a run. 4-1 Swallows But that was the extent of the damage by the Carp in the inning.

After starting the bottom of the fifth with back-to-back strikeouts Muranaka ran into some trouble. He gave up a double to pinch hitter Aizawa, and a Tanaka single brought in a run. 4-2 Swallows Muranaka gave up a hit to Kikuchi but got Maru to ground out to end the inning.

The Swallows then handed the ball to Hirai and he answered with two strong innings of shutout ball (1 hit, 3 Ks, 0 BB). The offense got runners against the Carp relievers but couldn’t stretch the lead until the ninth. After Lueke pitched a scoreless eighth, the Swallows responded with an insurance run in the ninth. Sakaguchi lead off the inning with a walk and while Kawabata was fouling off pitch after pitch, Sakaguchi capitalized on a rare ball with a stolen base. Kawabata finally saw a hittable ball on his 13th pitch and singled to put men on the corners. Yamada got the RBI with a sac fly to give Akiyoshi a three run cushion in the ninth. 5-2 Swallows

Akiyoshi wasn’t perfect but managed to keep the Carp off the board despite giving up a lead off single and a two out walk to preserve the win. 5-2 Swallows FINAL

Notes

  • Muranaka earned his first win as a starter since August 7, 2014. The win was Muranaka’s fifth overall this season which leads all pitchers on the Swallows’ staff.
  • Yamada finished the night 2-for-3 with a walk, 2 runs, an RBI. Yamada seems to be a shoe-in for June offensive MVP as he easily topped the triple crown categories with a .346 BA, 10 HRs, and 28 RBIs. Yamada also lead the league with 25 runs in June. Yamada leads the league in all of those categories plus stolen bases (and a whole bunch of others) for all of 2016.
  • Speaking of June stats, Yuhei tied for second in June RBIs with 16.
  • The Swallows will take the day off tomorrow before traveling up to Akita to face the Giants in a home-away-from-home series over the weekend.
  • Carp’s winning streak went 11 games, which was one short of tying the team record of 12.
About Kozo Ota

Kozo Ota is a third-generation Swallows fan that grew up on Montreal Expos baseball. (You can read more about that here.) When he's not at Jingu, he works as a freelance translator/interpreter to make enough money to go to Jingu. You can find random posts by Kozo on Google+ and Twitter.