Aug 22nd 2015, vs Chunichi

Aug 22nd, 2015

Chunichi LogoChunichi Dragons 2

Tokyo Swallows 13

Streak: Won 1 Last 5: LWLLW

(Meiji Jingu Stadium)

Your birds embarrassed the visiting Dragons of Nagoya thanks to six decent innings from Ishiyama and an offensive outburst by the Swallows cleanup.

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W: Ishiyama (5-5, 3.65 ERA)
L: Hamada (0-1, 6.14 ERA)

Yamada went yard three times in this contest.

 Dragons Swallows
1 Yohei Ohshima (CF)1Wataru Hiyane (CF)
2Kyohei Kamezawa (2B)2Shingo Kawabata (3B)
3Hector Luna (1B)3Tetsuto Yamada (2B)
4Ryosuke Hirata (RF)4Kazuhiro Hatakeyama (1B)
5Kazuhiro Wada (LF)5Yuhei (Takai) (RF)
6Anderson Hernandez (3B)6Lastings Milledge (LF)
7Issei Endo (SS)7Keiji Ohbiki (SS)
8Shota Sugiyama (C)8Yuhei Nakamura (C)
9Tatsuro Hamada (P)9Taichi Ishiyama (P)

After last night’s drubbing, Hiyane made sure to start things off with a bang this evening. He did so by parking the second pitch by third year lefty, Hamada, in the left field stands. It was his third of the season.

One out later, Yamada hit his first homer of the game on a 1-1 slider.

2-0 Tokyo

Hiyane’s next plate appearance came in the third when he led off with a five pitch walk. He stole second on the 1-0 pitch of Kawabata’s at bat, and then he reached home safely on Kawabata’s double into the left-center gap.

With first base open, Hamada walked Yamada on four straight pitches, and that would prove to be a mistake. Oguma relieved Hamada on the mound to face Tokyo’s cleanup hitter, Hatakeyeama. He may be fat, but he can rake when the sweat stays out of his eyes. Hatake ripped a 2-2 heater into the left field stands to add three more runs to the early Tokyo lead.

6-0 Tokyo

Chunichi scored one in the top of the fourth when Wada (double) scored on an Endoh double.

6-1 Tokyo

And they manufactured another in the fifth when Kamezawa scored from second (single, steal) on a Luna single.

6-2 Tokyo

Having eclipsed 30 HR for the first time in his career, he's just five steals from a 30-30 season.

Having eclipsed 30 HR for the first time in his career, he’s just five steals from a 30-30 season.

But that would be it for any simmering hope in the left field stands. Tokyo’s offensive onslaught resumed promptly in the bottom of the fifth. Kawabata, facing Chunichi’s second reliever, Asakura, began the inning with another double on a high 1-1 cutter. Yamada also feasted on a high 1-1 cutter, and it resulted in his second home run of the game, and number 30 for the season.

8-2 Tokyo

Tokyo put together one hell of a two out rally in the bottom of the sixth. After five foul balls and 10 pitches, Hiyane collected his second walk of the game from Chunichi’s final reliever, Yamamoto. Kawabata followed with a single, and with runners on the corners, Yamada hit home run number 31, again to left field, on a 1-1 inside fastball.

Hatakeyama kept the momentum going with a double on a 1-1 Yamamoto cutter, and Yuhei brought him home on a 1-0 forkball.

12-2 Tokyo

Tokyo added a final run in the eighth thanks to Kawabata’s third double of the game and a Yamada RBI single.

13-2 FINAL

Ishiyama (3.65 ERA) got the win and was assisted by one scoreless inning of relief each from Kyuko (1.10), Akiyoshi (2.90), and Tokuyama (3.12).

Yamada was the clear MVP of the game. He went 4-4 from the plate with three homers, a single, and a walk. He tallied a whopping seven RBI tonight.

Kawabata had a great OBP day as well. He was 4-5 with three doubles and a single.

Hatakeyama was the only other Swallow with a multi-hit game. He was 2-5 with a homer (no. 22) and a double. He had three RBI.

Tomorrow evening’s game starts at 5 PM with Tateyama (3-1, 4.45 ERA) taking the mound against Chunichi’s Wakamatsu (6-2, 2.27). Tateyama threw 96 pitches over five innings in his last start, a win against Hanshin on exactly one week ago.

*GAME NOTES:

Hiyane hit one home run in 2013, his best season before this year. In 2013 he had 39 hits in 156 at bats. So far this year he has 38 hits from 152.

Kawabata set the table nicely for Yamada today. Four hits, three doubles, one RBI, and four runs scored.

Kawabata set the table nicely for Yamada today. Four hits, three doubles, one RBI, and four runs scored.

Yamada’s three round-trippers today were the finishing touches of a four homers in four at-bats performance. The first came in his final plate appearance last night, and he is now tied with 18 other players who managed the same feat. Of the 18 players on the historic list, readers of this site will recognize Swallows greats Ikeyama and Furuta (1992), and current DL inhabitant, Balentien (2013).

Milledge went 1-2 (K, single, BB, BB) in his return to the starting lineup. It was his first game since May 23rd against Hiroshima.

Central League Leaders: 
Yamada – runs scored (97), doubles (33), HR (31), total bases (277), steals (25), OBP (.415), SLG (.621)
Kawabata – hits (155), average (.335)
Hatakeyama – RBI (84), sac flies (7)

The farm team beat Surugadai University 20-0. Nishiura (5, 6), Taniuchi (4), and Hoshino (2, 5) collected three hits each. Fujii (8) had five. Surugadai collected five errors. Yoshinori reemerged from a three and a half month (PlayStation 2) hibernation to pitch two innings of scoreless relief.

About Christopher Pellegrini

Christopher is a budding sabermetrician and long-time supporter of Tokyo’s more lovable team, the Swallows. He has publicly volunteered, several times, that he plans to buy the team at some point in the future. When he finally runs the joint, it is likely that he will fine any player who swings at the first pitch or sac bunts (unless it’s a pitcher, of course). Follow him on Twitter: @chrispellegrini