10/20/08 – Central League Climax Series – 1st Stage – Chunichi vs. Hanshin (Game 3)

October 20th, 2008

Tokyo Yakult Swallows capChunichi Dragons 2

Hanshin Tigers 0

(Kyocera Dome)

A 9th inning Tyrone Woods two-run home run off Hanshin closer Fujikawa was the difference between the two teams on Monday night, as Chunichi advanced to the Climax Series 2nd Stage.

The game was a pitchers duel between the Dragon’s Yoshimi and the Tigers’ Iwata, both pitching 8 shutout innings.

Fujikawa came to the mound in the top of the 9th, and gave up a hit before Wood’s blast gave Chunichi a last gasp 2-0 lead.

On came Iwase for the Dragons to try to shut down the Tigers in the bottom of the 9th. And he did just that, sitting down Arai, Kawamoto and Toritani in order to keep the reigning Japan Series champs in with a shout in 2008. 

So, the 2nd stage series will be the same as that of 2007, with Chunichi taking on the Giants at Tokyo Dome.  The difference this year is that the Giants will have a 1 game advantage in the first to 4 series due to their 1st place CL finish.

Go Dragons!

About David Watkins

David is a baseball bothering Brummie who spends a fair portion of his life fretting over the Tokyo Swallows and the WORLD'S GREATEST FOOTBALL TEAM, Aston Villa. He completes the quartet of abusive sporting relationships by being a die hard New York Knicks and Mets fan. You can find him on twitter: @yakulto

  • When Woods came up to bat in the 9th, I immediately thought, “First base is open. They should walk him.”

    When the first three pitches stacked the count at 0-3, I nearly headed off to take a quick toilet break. But then Fujikawa started throwing stuff that Mr. Woods might want to take a swing at.

    Not that Fujikawa shouldn’t pitch to the opposing team’s cleanup hitter. Fujikawa is the best in the league, and he is definitely capable of striking Woods out. He’s done it a million times before. But, as evidenced by his performance last year, Tyrone seems to come alive at this point in the season…

    And after a couple of check-swings that brought the count full, Woods deposited pitch number six of the at-bat into the left field bleachers.

    I can’t claim that I stated out loud that Woods would hit a home run if Fujikawa pitched to him. I never saw that coming. What I visualized happening was a hard rbi single off the wall in left.

    Either way, the result is the same.

    And, wow, what a finish.

  • Rob

    Chills and spills galore! Great pitching by the startes, despite some sloppy defense on both sides. Five errors total, seemingly endless double plays for the Dragons….

    The ball Yano couldn’t find that let Hidenori advance to third was the killer. Fujikawa couldn’t throw his nastiest fork with a runner on third. Tyrone could wait on a fastball, so the key was whether Fujikawa would put it in the strike zone.

    I hope the Dragons offered Woods a new contract after that. (Or maybe they’ve already re-signed him and I’ve just missed it?) If not, I hope he signs with the Tigers and haunts the Drags for the rest of his career! (They could just move Arai back to 3B, right?)

  • Deanna posted a photo with some good artwork here. You have to read it from the bottom up in order for it to sound right.

  • Christopher Amano-Langtree

    Arai at third would give the coaches kittens. He isn’t a very good third base. Woods at first for the Tigers – that’s a nice thought though. If there is one batter Fujikawa is scared of its Woods so eliminating that threat would be worth it.