Sept 11th 2014, @ Yokohama

September 11th, 2014

Tokyo Swallows 3

Yokohama BayStars 2

Streak: Won 1 Last 5: LWLLW

(Yokohama Stadium)

The Swallows finally got to face the BayStars bullpen and they squeaked out a dramatic late inning victory to salvage their trip to Yokohama.

W: Akiyoshi (3-4)
L: Mikami (0-3)
S: Barnette (12)

 Swallows BayStars
1Tetsuto Yamada (2B)1Takayuki Kajitani (RF)
2Tsuyoshi Ueda (CF)2Noriharu Yamazaki (SS)
3Shingo Kawabata (3B)3Yulieski Gourriel (2B)
4Wladimir Balentien (LF)4Yoshitomo Tsutsugo (LF)
5Yuhei (Takai) (RF)5Tony Blanco (1B)
6Kazuhiro Hatakeyama (1B)6Takahiro Ishikawa (CF)
7Ryosuke Morioka (SS)7Aarom Balderis (3B)
8Yuhei Nakamura (C)8Toshiki Kurobane (C)
9Masanori Ishikawa (P)9Kentaro Takasaki (P)

Although the Swallows offense still couldn’t get anything going in the first inning. The fact that Ishikawa didn’t allow a first pitch home run to Kajitani to start the first was a big improvement from the previous nights. (Ishikawa did allow a lead off single to Kajitani, but only after 6 pitches.)

In fact the Swallows actually scored first and took the lead for the first time in the series. In the third inning, back-to-back singles by Yamada and Ueda put men on the corners. Yamada came home on a double play grounder by Kawabata. 1-0 Swallows It wasn’t pretty but it was an improvement over the previous games.

The lead didn’t last too long as the BayStars managed to score their own ground out in the fourth inning. 1-1 All

Ishikawa didn’t look too great in the fifth as he gave up a double to Kurobane and a walk to Goto who was pinch hitting. Yamazaki got a single to right to score one run and take the lead for the BayStars. 2-1 BayStars

From that point on, the Swallows’ pitching did their job and kept the BayStars off the board. While the Swallows offense looked better than the previous nights they were still looking relatively weak. The BayStars managed to hold their one run lead into the eighth inning. With southpaw Hayashi on the mound the Swallows elected to send out Iihara out in lieu of Ueda to start the inning. The move payed off big time as Iihara took Hayashi’s pitch into the left field stands to tie the game. 2-2 All

The Swallows finally cracked the BayStars bullpen.

The Swallows finally cracked the BayStars bullpen.

The Swallows went down 1-2-3 after Iihara and the Swallows faithful were left with doubt with the score tied heading to the final frame. But Akiyoshi kept the BayStars off the board in the bottom of the inning. Hatake lead off the ninth inning with a double and was promptly replaced on the basepath by Noguchi. Noguchi moved to third on a Morioka grounder, and a Nakamura fly out was deep enough for a sac fly. 3-2 Swallows

Barnette came in and closed out the game with 2 strikeouts and a ground out for the win. 3-2 Swallows FINAL

A fine team effort.

A fine team effort.

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.