5/3/12 – Yokohama (Away)

May 3rd, 2012

Tokyo Swallows 1

Yokohama BayStars  3

Streak: Lost 1    Last 5: WLWWL

(Yokohama Stadium)

W: Takasaki (1-2) L: Muranaka (3-1) S: Yamaguchi (3)

Muranaka made his second straight start in the rain, but unlike the last outing, the Swallows’ offense wasn’t able to bail him out.

 Swallows BayStars
1Tanaka (2B)1Aranami (CF)
2Ueda (CF)2Watanabe (SS)
3Milledge (LF)3Tsutsugo (3B)
4Balentien (RF)4Ramirez (LF)
5Kawabata (SS)5Nakamura (1B)
6Miyamoto (3B)6Yoshimura (RF)
7Hatakeyama (3B)7Ishikawa (2B)
8Nakamura (C)8Kurobane (C)
9Muranaka (P)9Takasaki (P)

The Swallows went with their usual lineup, including Miyamoto in the 6 spot. The BayStars, on the other hand, finally got to start Tsutsugo and Nakahata retooled his lineup accordingly.

Tanaka started the rainy afternoon game with a double off Takasaki, and it was the last time a Swallows managed an extra base hit off a Yokohama pitcher. Ueda, Milledge, and Balentien weren’t able to cash in on Tanaka’s double, and that foreshadowed the things that were to come.

As has been the norm recently, Muranaka started off the day very shaky. After giving a lead off single to Aranami, Muranaka walked Watanabe to put 2 men on with no outs. Muranaka did manage to get Tsutsugo and Ramirez out, but walked Nakamura to load the bases before getting Yoshimura to fly out to right to end the first. Muranaka needed 25 pitches to get through the first and it was pretty clear it wasn’t going to be a long night for the lefty, unless he got things together.

Takasaki pitched an efficient game keeping the ball largely in the infield. Even when the Swallows got a man on base, he kept the Swallows from capitalizing.

The BayStars broke the game open in the third. Watanabe and Tsutsugo lead off the inning with back-to-back singles to put men on the corners. Ramirez flew out to shallow center and couldn’t bring home Watanabe. Nakamura followed with a double to right which easily scored Watanabe but Tsutsugo was gunned down at home. 1-0 BayStars With 2 out with a man on third, Nakamura having advanced on the throw to home, Yoshimura hit one off Muranaka’s glove for a infield single that scored Nakamura from third. 2-0 BayStars Muranaka walked Ishikawa but managed to end the inning by inducing a fly out from Kurobane.

Takasaki finally showed some vulnerability in the sixth loading the bases after one out to the single-walk-single combo of Milledge, Balentien and Kawabata. The stage was set for Miyamoto, who was 0-for-2 for the game, to get his 2000th career hit in style and give the Swallows a shot in the arm. Unfortunately, while Miyamoto did get an RBI, it was “just” an easy walk to scoe 1. 2-1 BayStars With the bases still loaded the chance was on the shoulders of Hatake who flied out to center. Balentien tried to score on the fly, but Kurobane had the plate solidly blocked and prevented the barreling Curaçaoan from dislodging the ball. So the Swallows only managed to get 1 run off their only chance.

The BayStars got an insurance run in the seventh off Hirai, who came in for mop up duty. Watanabe led off the inning with a double, and Tsutsugo followed with a walk. Morimoto advanced the runners with a grounder, and Watanabe came home off of a sac fly by Nakamura. 3-1 BayStars

Both teams’ bullpens finished the game quickly an efficiently and that was the final score.

Muranaka allowed another 5 walks to his season total, giving him 20 in 6 starts. Along with his walks, Muranaka gave up 7 hits in his 6 innings of work, while only getting 3 strikeouts.

Miyamoto ended up striking out in his last at bat in the ninth inning, setting the stage for his career milestone at Jingu during the team’s 3 game series against Hiroshima. The Swallows will kick off the series with Akagawa, while the Carp will counter with Fukui.

MIyamoto couldn't get hit #2000 in the rain.

About Kozo Ota

Kozo Ota is a third-generation Swallows fan that grew up on Montreal Expos baseball. (You can read more about that here.) When he's not at Jingu, he works as a freelance translator/interpreter to make enough money to go to Jingu. You can find random posts by Kozo on Google+ and Twitter.

  • Michael Westbay

    Ah, it’s so nice to finally have Tsutsugoh in the lineup.  I’d been looking forward to this since he got hit in Spring.

  • I actually was watching a little bit of the game because it was an afternoon game — I saw Miyamoto’s at-bat and felt similarly like “ok, that’s nice as an RBI but kind of a shame to waste the moment, huh?”  But at least now he’s going back to Jingu so hopefully will hit it in front of the home crowd.

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