Aug 6th 2014, vs Hanshin

August 6th, 2014

Hanshin Tigers 6

Tokyo Swallows 7

Streak: Won 1  Last 5: WWWLW

(Meiji Jingu Stadium)

W: Matsuoka (2-1; 5.27 ERA)
L: Iwata (8-5; 2.51)
S: Barnette (4 S / 4.20)

While they nearly let this one slip away late, Tokyo held on to put last night’s monstrosity behind them and restore order to the universe with a well earned victory against Hanshin.

Uemoto (2B)1Yamada (2B)
Imanari (3B)2Yachi (SS)
Toritani (SS)3Kawabata (3B)
Gomez (1B)4Balentien (LF)
Murton (LF)5Yuhei (RF)
Fukudome (RF)6Hatakeyama (1B)
Itoh (CF)7Ihara (CF)
Umeno (C)8Aikawa (C)
Iwata (P)9Ishiyama (P)

The Swallows took the lead in the bottom of the 2nd, as a Yuhei double and Hatake single made it 1-0 Tokyo. A single for Aikawa and a hustled infield single for Yamada loaded the bases for Yachi, who was hit on is leg by a wobbling Iwata, bringing home the second Tokyo run for 2-0.

And it was three in the 3rd, as a towering shot to left from Balentien, number 23 for the year, made it 3-0.

Ishiyama meanwhile, was perfect over the same timespan, but he got into his first spot of trouble in the 4th, with two singles, a walk, and a Fake Ginger Jesus sac fly narrowing the lead to 3-1.

Things didn’t get much better for Ishiyama in the 5th, with a double, single, and another sac fly, this time from Uemoto, making it 3-2, before the second single of the game for Imanari tied things up at 3-3. That would be all for Ishiyama (5 IP / 78 P /  5 H / 1 K / 1 BB / 3 ER), and his wait for his first win as a starter continues.

Tokyo pulled away once more in the 6th. A one-out pinch hit single from Ueda, and a double from Yamada made it 4-3 Tokyo. Yachi then drew a walk to put men on first and second for Kawabata, who hit one over the head of FGJ in left and into the corner to score two on his double for 6-3. That was it for Iwata who was clearly feeling the pressure, with Tateyama coming in to replace him. And after getting Coco to fly out to centre, Yuhei poked one through the infield to right to put the lead at four, 7-3.

Ueda puts Tokyo ahead in the 6th as Iwata looks on

Ueda puts Tokyo ahead in the 6th as Iwata looks on

After Ishiyama departed, Matsuoka worked scoreless 6th and 7th innings, though he was aided by a Fukudome double play in the 6th after letting two on via a single and walk. As an aside, how Fukudome is still a starter on a professional team is completely beyond me.

Kyuko and Kiya split the 8th, and kept it scoreless despite each allowing a man on (dead ball and walk).

Kiya returned for the 9th with the lead still at four, but after giving up a single and walk to lead off the frame, Barnette was summoned from the pen to try and shut this one down before things got out of hand. Which he managed to do, just. Tony struck out Sekimoto, before Uemoto worked a seven pitch walk to load the bases. Imanari continued his hot evening with a double which brought home two for 7-5. Another run then scored on a Toritani ground out to short and things were getting very uncomfortable indeed at 7-6. Next man up was Gomez, who ultimately went down swinging, and it was relief all round for a 7-6 Tokyo Final.

Game Notage

  • Kawabata and Yuhei were the 3 hit guys this evening, Yamada managed 2. All non-Ishiyama members of the starting line registered at least a hit.
  • Another healthy summer crowd of 24,513 was there to witness this one, which lasted just shy of 3 hours 45 minutes.
  • Hanshin still lead the season series 9-7.
  • Tomorrow’s rubber game will see Muranaka look to build on his excellent outing from last week.

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