Monday Bullets #6 (Interleague Preview Edition)

Monday Bullets is a feature in which Tsubamegun writers (mostly Kozo) gather random news, thoughts, images, movies, etc. during the week and publish them for off day consumption.

  • Not a lot of bullets this week. Got too excited over the teams sudden turn in fortunes keyed by the emergence of effective starting pitching. But now the dreaded Interleague season starts. The Swallows have not fared very well against Pacific League teams in recent years but this year we go into Interleague on a roll and the teams that we play first look beatable. The first three teams we’ll face are the bottom three teams in the PL Here are a bunch of bullet points derived from a quick look at the PL stadings and stats.
  • Marines – Since ending April on a 6 game winning streak the Marines have not won consecutive games in May. The Marines don’t have a lot of pop and are struggling to get quality starts from their rotation. One of their perennial workhorses Karakawa was recently demoted after a bad run of starts. The Swallows will face former Lion Wakui in tomorrow’s game. Wakui has been a hard luck loser in his last couple of starts only allowing two runs each game, but he’s still far from the dominating starter he was five years ago. The Marines were one of the few teams the Swallows managed to beat up on in last year’s interleague.
  • After the two game set in Chiba the Swallows will head to Saitama to attempt to win under the Seibu Dome roof. The Swallows are currently on a 10 game losing streak in the Seibu Dome and the results in recent years haven’t been competitive. The Lions however find themselves in the PL cellar largely due to having the most underwhelming offense in NPB. They have had bright spots in pitching notablly from Kishi who will likely start against the Swallows this week. Kishi threw a no-hitter against the Marines at the Seibu Dome earlier this month.
  • The defending NPB Champions don’t quite look the same without Masahiro Tanaka. Kevin Youkilis hasn’t been able to replace of Casey McGehee, and Takahiro Norimoto is having a rougher sophomore year. On the other hand, Wataru Karashima is having a good year on the mound, but he is the only consistant starter the Eagles have so far this season. Not quite sure where this team stands this season.
  • After almost 2 years of inactivity, Lastings Milledge’s Twitter account (@Lasto292) came back to life this week. It seems Lastings has launched a website (LASTINGS85.COM) and a YouTube cooking series appropriately titled “Cooking with Lastings Milledge,” check out the first installment below. Send Lastings your support on the Twitter!

  • Not a ton of roster moves this week. Ishiyama was recalled for Shichijo on Friday, and Abe was sent down on Sunday to make room for Matsuoka. (Who else was surprised that Matsoka actually pitched effectively?)
  • This week’s photo of the week come courtesy of @exptubame on Twitter. It features Tony Barnette and Chris Carpenter on the farm. Best of luck to both of them!

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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.