7/2/11 – Hiroshima (Away)

July 2, 2011

Hiroshima Carp 6

Tokyo Swallows 5

Streak: Lost 1      Last 5: WDDWL

(Mazda Stadium)

This was not a pretty game. A middle-relief meltdown combined with a weak day at the plate to level the series at one game apiece.

Tokyo:

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

Hiroshima:

  1. Higashide (2B)
  2. Kimura (SS)
  3. Maru (CF)
  4. Kurihara (1B)
  5. Matsuyama (RF)
  6. Kokubo (3B)
  7. Amaya (LF)
  8. Ishihara (C)
  9. Shinoda (P)

Tokyo struck first with a huge third inning. Kawabata’s leadoff walk was followed by an Aikawa double. Starting pitcher, Yamamoto, then helped his own cause with an RBI single to center. Aoki then plated Aikawa with a single to center, and Tanaka brought both Yamamoto and Aoki home on a double to left. 4-0 Tokyo.

Unfortunately, Tokyo’s cleanup trio of Whitesell, Hatakeyama and Balentien weren’t able to do any damage in this game. They recorded three quick outs to end the party in the third, and they went a combined 0-10. The only one of the three to reach base was Hatakeyama care of a beaning in the sixth inning.

But the Swallows had an even bigger problem this afternoon–protecting the four run lead.

The Carp finally got to Yamamoto in the third. Higashide hit a two out, bases loaded single to center to score two runs and bring an end to Yamamoto’s afternoon on the mound. 4-2 Tokyo.

Matsuoka (4.29 ERA) recorded the final out of the fourth inning but then gave up two runs in the fifth. And Kyuko (3.07) gave up two runs (one earned) in the sixth. 6-4 Hiroshima.

Tokyo clawed one final run back in the seventh thanks to a couple of walks and a Tanaka RBI single to left. But there wasn’t enough in the tank to get themselves back into the game. 6-5 Final.

Kyuko took the loss, the first of his pro career, for giving up those two runs in the sixth. Meanwhile, Tanaka impressed at the plate with his 3-5 hitting and three RBIs.

Kawabata also gets some love for drawing three walks and scoring twice.

Game three of this series kicks off tomorrow at 1:30 PM in Hiroshima.

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

  • Baseballoogie

    I was at this game as well, to see the unfortunately named Mazda Zoom Zoom Stadium in Hiroshima. It was an absolutely orgy of missed opportunities and middle relief slop.

    Well, the Swallows are still 2-1 with myself in attendance.