7/11/09 – Yokohama (Away)

July 11th, 2009

Tokyo Yakult Swallows cap

Yokohama BayStars 4

Tokyo Yakult Swallows 2

Streak: Lost 1  Last 5: LWWWL

(Jingu Stadium)

The day after Tokyo had won 4-2 against Yokohama for only their second victory of the year against the CL’s 6th placed team, the BayStars turned the tables for their seventh win of 2009 against the 2nd placed Swallows.

Yoshinori started for Yakult coming off two quality starts against the Giants and the Tigers, and he did well enough tonight but just didn’t get the run support he needed. Yoshinori pitched seven innings of three-run baseball, giving up eight hits with four strikeouts and two walks. He was tagged with the loss to put his record at 5 and 5 with an ERA of 5.61. Today’s lineup saw Miyamoto and Aikawa return after being given a night off yesterday.

Yokohama starter Mastny held the Swallows to just one run over his five innings, but he really should have been punished more as Tokyo wasted a couple of big chances.

The BayStars took the lead in the 3rd, Uchikawa with the timely single to bring home Fujita for 1-0 Yokohama.

Yakult then wasted a chance to get back in it in the 4th. Singles from Tanaka and Fukuchi put men on first and second. D’Antona then struck out for out number one before Guiel was plunked to load the bases. Unfortunately Miyamoto struck out and then Aikawa could only hit a flyball to centre and the inning was over.

The BayStars then punished that wastefulness in the top of the 5th. One-out singles from Fujita and Uchikawa were followed up by a timely Murata single to make it 2-0 and put men on the corners. Johnson hit a grounder to second but the Swallows couldn’t quite turn the double play and another run was in to put the score at 3-0 Yokohama.

Consectutive two-out singles from Aoki, Tanaka and Fukuchi made it 3-1 in the bottom of the 5th. D’Antona then flew out with men on the corners to end the inning as another chance went begging.

And that would be pretty much that aside from two solo-homers. Lee Hye-Cheon (3.21) gave up the first in the 8th to Johnson and it was 4-1 before D’Antona hit his 14th longball of the year to make it 4-2 in the bottom of the same inning.

Oshimoto (3.29) worked a hitless top of the 9th and then Yokohama closer Yamaguchi took the mound. Yamaguchi gave up a leadoff walk to Miyamoto in the bottom of the 9th but he got the job done, 4-2 Yokohama.

The game was a close one with Yokohama edging the hit-count 10 to 9. They’d take their chances, and Tokyo hadn’t, simple as that really.

The two teams will return to Jingu tomorrow afternoon with Ishikawa due to take the mound looking to get his season back on track after a string of less than stellar starts.

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

  • I was at the game tonight. Yokohama played quite well, and Tokyo seemed to have rotten luck.

    I’ve only seen Yokohama three times in person this year but they’ve looked good every time. Seems surprising to me they are so awful in the standings.

    • They certainly always play well against us that’s for sure!

      I didn’t go tonight, opting to watch it on TV. After witnessing two good wins at Jingu on Thursday and Friday I knew I would be chancing my luck going tonight. And so it proved….

  • They didn’t exactly roll over for Yomiuri either. I don’t know if it’s because teams relax and rest players against them (as we did on Friday night), but they can certainly keep things close for most of the game.

  • Wait, where’d the “WHY CAN’T WE BEAT YOKOHAMA THEY SUCK” tag go? 🙂

    Rare afternoon game today… I thought about going, but the Fighters-Marines are on TV and I’m feeling poor lately. I want to join you guys for the Swallows-Giants this week though, will you be there?

    • I put the tag in just for you!

      I can go to the Tuesday and Thursday games, ah, wait. Tuesday is in Fukushima and Thursday’s game doesn’t exist………damn these weirdy schedules.

      I can’t speak for the other two amigos but I’m sure they’ll pop by to let you know soon enough.

      • Sadly, I’m out – Tuesday night will be the last Tuesday on which I finish work too late to go, though. I’ll next be there at the end of the month after my Nagoya-Osaka-Kyoto-Hiroshima trip. (I have no idea how Kyoto worked its way in there – maybe because they have no team that causes my blood pressure to rise by beating us when they shouldn’t.)

      • Wednesday is the Giants game Mr.G.

  • So it is, David. So it is.

    Only Wed. evening, I will be at the Cantina in Takadanobaba planning live coverage of the upcoming general election – good stuff for the political junkies. Not quite as exciting for baseball fans (unless they’re also into politics, of course.)

  • well, i cast my vote just to oust the LDP. really long rule almost always leads to corruption as humans are inherently greedy bitches. DPJ’s a mess too, but this upcoming paradigm shift in Japanese politics can only make things better as things can’t get any worse.

    i’ll be at the game on wed.

    • Agreed, Simon. I must confess that I see a strong connection between baseball and politics, too. I mean, don’t you kind of picture the Giants when you see the LDP? I do. I sometimes think of them as different wings of the same beast. If I found out the Yomiuri Giants had appropriated loads of tax money to hire their former players and their buddies to build a highway through Shiretoko, I wouldn’t be all that surprised. Likewise, I wouldn’t bat an eye at hearing some LDP dinosaur (I’m picturing Ibuki Bunmei) complain that it was bad for the country when the Giants lost and that, as such, teams who beat the Giants were keeping Japan’s problems from being solved.

      Actually, this is starting to sound like some kind of dystopian science fiction story.

  • Please refrain from mentioning the LDP and Yomiuri in the same comment even if they are one and the same. That many dirty words grouped together could get the site taken down.

    And on a totally unrelated topic: sweet banner, yo.

    • That was all the work of Watkins. And I concur – best-looking banner this site has yet had.

      Sorry about the language. I forget sometimes that baseball is a family game and that women and children might visit the site.