June 30th, 2016
Hiroshima Carp 2
Streak: Won 1 Last 5: WWLLW
(Mazda Zooooom Zoooooooooom Stadium)
The Swallows managed to put a stop to the Carp’s massive winning streak thanks to some strong pitching (?!) and some timely hitting.
|W: Muranaka (5-2)
L: Nakamura (1-1)
S: Akiyoshi (2)
|1||Keiji Ohbiki (SS)||1||Kosuke Tanaka (SS)|
|2||Tomotaka Sakaguchi (CF)||2||Ryosuke Kikuchi (2B)|
|3||Shingo Kawabata (3B)||3||Yoshihiro Maru (CF)|
|4||Tetsuto Yamada (2B)||4||Hector Luna (3B)|
|5||Wladimir Balentien (LF)||5||Seiya Suzuki (RF)|
|6||Yuhei (Takai) (RF)||6||Takahiro Arai (1B)|
|7||Akihisa Nishida (1B)||7||Ko Shimozuru (LF)|
|8||Yuhei Nakamura (C)||8||Yoshitaka Isomura (C)|
|9||Kyohei Muranaka (P)||9||Kyohei Nakamura (P)|
The most interesting thing about tonight’s pitching matchup going into the game was the similarity between both pitchers’ names Kyohei Nakamura vs. Kyohei Nakamura. Muranaka was making his first start since 2014, and Nakamura had been an unspectacular starter for the Carp without a decision since the end of May.
The Swallows struck first in the second inning. Yamada lead off the inning with a 12 pitch walk. Yamada advanced to second on a Coco ground out and came home on a Yuhei single. 1-0 Swallows
Muranaka allowed runners through the first three innings but also got out of a bunch of jums thanks to his four strikeouts in those innings.
The offense got to Nakamura in the fourth. Kawabata lead off with a double and Yamada and Coco loaded the bases with back-to-back singles. Two runs scored on a Yuhei single. 3-0 Swallows Nakamura (our catcher) reloaded the bases with a single and Obiki got a two out singe to bring in an extra run. 4-0 Swallows
The Carp got one back in the bottom of the inning after a lead off double by Maru became an one out sac fly for a run. 4-1 Swallows But that was the extent of the damage by the Carp in the inning.
After starting the bottom of the fifth with back-to-back strikeouts Muranaka ran into some trouble. He gave up a double to pinch hitter Aizawa, and a Tanaka single brought in a run. 4-2 Swallows Muranaka gave up a hit to Kikuchi but got Maru to ground out to end the inning.
The Swallows then handed the ball to Hirai and he answered with two strong innings of shutout ball (1 hit, 3 Ks, 0 BB). The offense got runners against the Carp relievers but couldn’t stretch the lead until the ninth. After Lueke pitched a scoreless eighth, the Swallows responded with an insurance run in the ninth. Sakaguchi lead off the inning with a walk and while Kawabata was fouling off pitch after pitch, Sakaguchi capitalized on a rare ball with a stolen base. Kawabata finally saw a hittable ball on his 13th pitch and singled to put men on the corners. Yamada got the RBI with a sac fly to give Akiyoshi a three run cushion in the ninth. 5-2 Swallows
Akiyoshi wasn’t perfect but managed to keep the Carp off the board despite giving up a lead off single and a two out walk to preserve the win. 5-2 Swallows FINAL
- Muranaka earned his first win as a starter since August 7, 2014. The win was Muranaka’s fifth overall this season which leads all pitchers on the Swallows’ staff.
- Yamada finished the night 2-for-3 with a walk, 2 runs, an RBI. Yamada seems to be a shoe-in for June offensive MVP as he easily topped the triple crown categories with a .346 BA, 10 HRs, and 28 RBIs. Yamada also lead the league with 25 runs in June. Yamada leads the league in all of those categories plus stolen bases (and a whole bunch of others) for all of 2016.
- Speaking of June stats, Yuhei tied for second in June RBIs with 16.
- The Swallows will take the day off tomorrow before traveling up to Akita to face the Giants in a home-away-from-home series over the weekend.
- Carp’s winning streak went 11 games, which was one short of tying the team record of 12.