June 7th, 2008
Saitama Seibu Lions 5
Tokyo Yakult Swallows 3
Streak: Lost 1
(“Home” game for Tokyo at Hitachinaka)
Seibu won a close-fought game at Hitachinaka in Ibaraki prefecture to split the Interleague series between the sides at two a piece.
24 year old Lions pitcher Takayuki Kishi pitched 7 and 2/3 effective innings, giving up 3 runs on 7 hits for the win.
The Lions struck first in the top of the first inning, with Craig Brazell’s two run homer deep into the right field bleachers off Yakult starter Ryo Kawashima, who was making only his third start of the season.
The Swallows struck back in the bottom of the same inning with a two run dinger from Aoki into the same bleachers Brazell had just disturbed.
The Lions then retook the lead in the third with a fielder’s choice grounder to third base from catcher Hosokawa. They then extended their lead with a bases loaded walk from Kawashima, followed by another RBI for Hosokawa with a grounder to make it 5-2 Lions.
The Swallows would score one more run in the seventh when Hiroyasu Tanaka brought home Yuichi from second, but despite a couple more hits in the bottom of the ninth off Seibu closer Alex Graman, they held on for the win to halt Yakult’s mini-revival at two wins.
The Swallows return to Jingu Stadium tomorrow and Monday for two games against Bobby Valentine’s slumping Chiba Lotte Marines.