6/11/11 – Fukuoka (Away)

June 11th, 2011

Tokyo Yakult Swallows 1

Fukuoka SoftBank Hawks 4

Streak: Lost 1   Last 5: WWLDL

(Yahoo Dome)



Tokyo’s inability to take something from the better PL teams continued as they went down against the ridiculously hot Hawks in Fukuoka.



Ishikawa (P)

Cabrera rounds the bases in Ishikawa's nightmare 1st

  1. Aoki (CF)
  2. Tanaka (2B)
  3. Whitesell (DH)
  4. Hatakeyama (1B)
  5. Balentien (RF)
  6. Miyamoto (3B)
  7. Miyade (LF)
  8. Morioka (SS)
  9. Aikawa (C)


Sugiuchi (P)

  1. Kawasaki (SS)
  2. Honda (2B)
  3. Uchikawa (RF)
  4. Kokubo (DH)
  5. Cabrera (1B)
  6. Ortiz (LF)
  7. Matsuda (3B)
  8. Hasegawa (CF)
  9. Yamazaki (C)

Facing another of the PL’s top-tier starters in Sugiuchi, this game was essentially done after the bottom of the 1st.

Ishikawa walked the first man he faced, Kawasaki, and he was bunted to second by Honda for out number one. Up stepped ex-Baystar Uchikawa who hit one up the middle to bring home the game’s first run and it was 1-0 Fukuoka. The scoring was not yet finished though, as after Ishikawa struck out Kokubo, man-mountain Cabrera made contact with an outside pitch and his power was such that it ended up over the rightfield wall to make it 3-0. Next man up Ortiz put an exclamation mark on the inning by blasting a solo shot to left to leave Ishikawa and Tokyo staring at at 4-0 Fukuoka scoreline.

After that rather inauspicious start, Ishikawa was magnificent, giving up just two more hits through his next six innings of work, making that 1st inning all the more galling. But unfortunately for Tokyo, Sugiuchi was equally magnificent, allowing just one more hit through his next six innings of work.

That hit was a Balentien solo homer to right that scored Tokyo’s only run of the game, and with Softbank’s bullpen shutting things down in the 8th and 9th innings that was all she wrote for a 4-1 Fukuoka Final.

Tokyo managed just two hits through the whole game, the other of which came in the 1st (Whitesell single).

Ishikawa took the loss after his 7IP/5H/6K/3BB/4ER performance and his record moves to 4-3/2.46.

In hopefully a sign of how things will be from now on, Masubuchi (5.36) reprised his relief role of last year to good effect as he pitched a hitless 8th inning.

The Swallows have managed just two runs in their three games against the Hawks this season, to Fukuoka’s thirteen.

Tokyo are still 1.5 games clear of Chunichi atop of the CL, 5 games above .500. Fukuoka are sitting atop of the PL, a massive 22 games above .500.

The two teams will meet again for (thankfully) the last time this year Sunday afternoon, with Tateyama the likely starter for the Swallows.



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