August 13th, 2016
Tokyo Swallows 2
Streak: Won 4 Last 5: LWWWW
(Meiji Jingu Stadium)
The last time your Birds won four in a row was way back during Golden Week. They won the final game of a series against Hiroshima and then swept Gomiuri at home on May 1st.
|W: Yamanaka (5-8; 3.51 ERA)
L: Ohtake (4-2; 3.12 ERA)
S: Akiyoshi (3-4 12S; 2.20 ERA)
Two days later the team extended the run to five games when they won the opener in Yokohama.
|1||Chono (RF)||1||Sakaguchi (C)|
|2||Hashimoto (CF)||2||Hiyane (RF)|
|3||Sakamoto (SS)||3||Nishiura (SS)|
|4||Abe (1B)||4||Balentien (LF)|
|5||Murata (3B)||5||Imanami (SS)|
|6||Garret (LF)||6||Yachi (2B)|
|7||Cruz (2B)||7||Ugumori (1B)|
|8||Kobayashi (C)||8||Nishida (C)|
|SP||Ohtake (RHP)||SP||Yamanaka (RHP)|
|RP||Yamaguchi (L), Nishimura (R), Tahara (R)||RP||Lueke (R), Akiyoshi (R)|
And with Yamanaka on the mound, the home team had about as good a chance as ever to take care of business.
As you may remember from yesterday’s game, Tokyo is developing a fun new habit of loading the bases and then cashing out early.
That’s exactly what happened in the first. Sakaguchi and Hiyane hit consecutive singles, and Balentien drew a one out walk. But Imanami and Yachi quickly recorded back-to-back outs to end the threat.
But Nishida made it all OK in the next frame when he ripped an elevated 3-2 pitch into the bleachers in left. It was his seventh of the season.
Tokyo doubled its advantage in the fourth. Imanami’s double was followed by a Yachi single which put runners on the corners. Imanami was able to sneak home on Ugumori’s ground out to short three pitches later.
Meanwhile, Yamanaka had everything on lockdown. He allowed only one hit and one walk through the first five innings, but then the same number of runners reached base in the sixth alone. He finally gave up a run in the seventh when Garrett hit a solo homer.
And that was pretty much it. Lueke and Akiyoshi did their thing in the eighth and ninth, and your Birds are in possession of a shiny, new, mildly sexy, four game winning streak.
However, the offense pulled its strand-three-runners trick in the fifth. Yamanaka (!) and Sakaguchi both singled before Hiyane drew a walk. But Nishiura, Balentien, and Imanami flamed out in consecutive at-bats to remind the audience that they should be thankful we’re not playing against a team with a real offense like Hiroshima or Yokohama right now.
Tokyo will attempt to tie its longest streak of the season tomorrow night when it sends Tateyama to the mound to face another orange muppet.
- Yamanaka threw 100 pitches over seven innings and allowed just one run from four hits (solo homer). He also struck out one and walked one.
- Sakaguchi was effective in the leadoff slot going three for four. He was one of the three runners stranded in both of those unfortunate bases loaded situations.
- Imanami was 2-4 at the plate, but was responsible for an out in each of the aforementioned scoring situations.