8/02/12 – Hanshin (Away)

August 2nd, 2012

Tokyo Swallows 5

Hanshin Tigers 0

Streak: Won 1  Last 5: DLLLW

(Koshien)

Yay, for clear wins and building positive momentum. For one game, at least, the Swallows showed us why the Tigers were solidly in fifth place in the CL. The Swallows will need to keep the momentum going, as they officially lost the services of yet another starter, as Wladimir Balentien was removed from the active roster. But enough sad thought! Let’s look back on tonight’s game and smile.

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W: Roman (6-7) L: Standridge (5-7)

 Swallows Tigers
1Lastings Milledge (LF)1Keiichi Hirano (2B)
2Hiroyasu Tanaka (2B) 2Yamato (Maeda) (CF)
3Shingo Kawabata (3B)3Takashi Toritani (SS)
4Kazuhiro Hatakeyama (1B)4Takahiro Arai (1B)
5Jun Matsui (RF)5Tomoaki Kanemoto (LF)
6Ryosuke Morioka (SS)6Matt Murton (RF)
7Kazuki Fukuchi (CF)7Ryota Arai (3B)
8Ryoji Aikawa (C)8Akihito Fujii (C)
9Orlando Roman (P)9Jason Standridge (P)

The Swallows got to Jason Standridge early. Lasting Milledge started the game with a single to center. After Hiroyasu Tak-Bunt (TM), Kawabata got an infield single to put men on the corners with just 1 out. Post-All Star Hatake brought Milledge home with a double to right. 1-0 Swallows Matsui followed with a grounder to second, which Hirano alertly threw home to start a rundown but allowed Matsui to get to second to preserve the threat with 2 outs. Morioka worked the count full, and finally made Standridge pay with single to center to score an extra run. 2-0 Swallows Unfortunately Yamato nailed the throw home to get Matsui trying to squeeze in an extra run.

On defense, the Swallows had Orlando Roman coming off a complete game win against the BayStar on the mound. Roman showed that he could beat up a higher caliber of team by owning the Tigers’ bats all night long. No Tiger made it past first base all game, and they rarely even had a chance to stand on first. Through 9 inning Roman allowed just 4 hits and a walk while retiring 7 by strikeout. Roman’s performance meant that the Swallows’ 2 runs in the top of the first was all that was needed to win, but the Birds strung together some extra runs to make the game an even more comfortable win for the good guys.

The Swallows got to Standridge in the fourth with a lead off single by Matsui, followed 1 out later by a Fukuchi single to put men on first and second. Aikawa brought Matsui home with a hit to left. 3-0 Swallows

The Swallows’ bats settled down after that, and it felt like the game was going to end 3-0, but things got exciting again in the ninth. Things started again on a lead off hit, this time a double by Morioka. Fukuchi bunted Morioka to third, and Ryo Watanabe walked Aikawa to put men on the corners. Roman managed to fly out to center, but Yamato missed hard on the throw back, and Morioka scored easily from third and Aikawa made it to third. 4-0 Swallows Milledge capped off the night with a 7 pitch battle against Watanabe that ended with MIlledge’s third hit of the night and another score for the Swallows. 5-0 Swallows

The Swallows now bring the show home to Jingu to face the Dragons over the weekend.

Orlando Roman gets his first complete game shutout of his NPB career.

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.