10/21/08 – Pacific League Climax Series – 2nd Stage – Hokkaido vs. Saitama (Game 5)

October 21st, 2008

Hokkaido Nippon Ham Fighters 4

Saitama Seibu Lions 9

(Seibu Dome)

Former Tokyo Swallows ace, Kazuhisa Ishii (1.29 playoff ERA), pitched a very strong seven innings for the home team in his first postseason appearance in a Lions uniform. He gave up three runs, one of them earned, off of five hits and tallied an impressive 13 K’s against four walks.

Hokkaido managed to score three runs in the 7th and one in the 9th, but it wasn’t nearly enough to catch up with the 15-hit attack orchestrated by Saitama.

Saitama put four runs on the board in the bottom of the first and never looked back. Both first baseman, Yoshihito Ishii, and centerfielder, Shougo Akada, had 3-4 nights and racked up two rbi’s each (Akada had a solo home run in the eighth for the team’s final run of the evening).

For Hokkaido, Botts went 3-4 with a home run, but that was their one bright spot for the evening in terms of offense.

Hokkaido starter, Brian Sweeney, gave up seven earned runs in three innings of work and took the loss for the visitors. He struck out one guy and didn’t walk anyone, but he gave up 10 hits during those three innings (including spans of three consecutive hits in both the first and second).

The Saitama Seibu Lions now lead the series three games to two. The Hokkaido Nippon Ham Fighters will try their best to force a game seven tomorrow night when game six starts at 6:15 PM (Seibu Dome).

About Christopher Pellegrini

Christopher is a budding sabermetrician and long-time supporter of Tokyo's more lovable team, the Swallows. He has publicly volunteered, several times, that he plans to buy the team at some point in the future. When he finally runs the joint, it is likely that he will fine any player who swings at the first pitch or sac bunts (unless it's a pitcher, of course). Follow him on Twitter: @chrispellegrini

  • I was at the game. Ishii wasn’t dominating, as he kept putting runners on base, but he kept on striking out batters to get out of those situations. Didn’t realize he’d racked up 13 Ks until the post-game (double Ishii) interview.
    It’s Wakui against Glynn tomorrow, we’ll see if Glynn can reverse fortunes after being pounded in game 1, or if the Lions can win this game and not have to face Darvish in the deciding game (on 4 days rest though).

  • Ishii’s WHIP was 1.29 which is, as you said, good but not exactly dominating…especially when compared with Darvish who is sporting a sub-one WHIP and 0.00 ERA after two Climax Series starts (0.67 WHIP in the game earlier in this series).

    Halving his BB tally would have moved Ishii’s performance into the Darvishian end of the spectrum.

    13 K’s though. Damn!