10/3/08 – Hanshin (Home)

October 3rd, 2008

Sanshin TigersTokyo Yakult Swallows cap

Hanshin Tigers 5

Tokyo Swallows 7

Streak: Won 1 Last 5: LWWLW

(Jingu Stadium)

Huh. Didn’t see that coming.

I sat with my back to the field for the majority of the game. The first six of this one were not a whole lot of fun.

The pizza arrived right around when Hanshin scored their fourth and fifth runs, so it didn’t hurt that much.

Tokyo starter, Gonzalez (1-4, 4.39), lasted five innings and gave up four runs (one earned) off of eight hits. He had four K’s and one walk before being relieved in the sixth by Oshimoto.

And Oshimoto (3.15) let another one come around, so the scoreline read 5-0 by the end of the sixth.

Oshimoto also pitched the seventh but retired all three batters he faced. Then, as has been the theme of late, things got a little bit wacky.

Hanshin used three pitchers to get through the bottom of the seventh. Kubota (3.20) started off and was tagged with three runs. Then Williams (3.27) came in and was credited with one. Atchison finished up the seventh and started the eighth and gave up three runs. Fujikawa (0.74) was brought in to finish out the last two outs of the eighth, but allowed Atchison’s last credited run to cross home plate.

Tokyo scored four runs in the seventh and three in the eighth in a totally unexpected come-from-behind win at home.

The seventh started with three singles in a row from Iihara, Guiel and Tanaka. With the bases loaded, Kawamoto struck out, but then pinch-hitter, Shida, managed a grounder to third that allowed Iihara enough time to score. 5-1 Hanshin.

With two outs, Aoki roped an rbi single to center. 5-2 Hanshin. Then Kawashima followed with a triple to center that scored two. 5-4 Hanshin. Fukuchi struck out to end the inning.

Hatakeyama led off the eighth with a double, and Guiel later drew a one-out walk. Tanaka loaded the bases with another single to center, and Kawamoto brought two runs around with his second double of the night. All that, teamed with a wild pitch from Fujikawa, meant that the score was 5-7 Tokyo at the end of eight.

Igarashi (2.66) came in to get his third save on the year. Kida (4.02) pitched the eighth and managed to escape without giving up any runs despite walking two of the five batters he faced.

The offensive standouts of the evening were Tanaka and Kawamoto. Kawamoto went 2-4 with those two huge rbi’s in the eighth. He was selected as the hero of the game and gave a spirited post-game interview. Tanaka humbly went 4-4. Aoki, Kawashima and Guiel also reached base twice.

Game two of the four game series is tomorrow night at Jingu. First pitch is at 6:20 PM.

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

  • Well, three wins in our last four games, and we’re still seven games behind Chunichi.

    It would be too easy to blame the fact that Chunichi have been playing Yokohama recently.

    Should have taken the game a little more seriously earlier on this season…

  • Christopher Amano-Langtree

    This was truely surprising with Tigers elite relief imploding like that and handing the victory to you guys.