April 23rd, 2017 vs. Hiroshima

April 23rd, 2017

TS Logo 150x transparentHiroshima Carp 7

Tokyo Swallows 4

Streak: Lost 1 Last 5: LLWWL

(Meiji Jingu Stadium)

Despite a meltdown from starter Ohlendorf, the Swallows almost swept Hiroshima at home.

W: Ichioka (1-0); L: Ishiyama (0-1);

But then they didn’t.

 Carp Swallows
1Kosuke Tanaka (SS)1Tomotaka Sakaguchi (CF)
2Ryosuke Kikuchi (2B)2Takahiro Araki (3B)
3Yoshihiro Maru (CF)3Tetsuto Yamada (2B)
4Takahiro Arai (1B)
4Wladimir Balentien (LF)
5Seiya Suzuki (RF)5Yuhei (Takai) (RF)
6Ryuhei Matsuyama (LF)6Yuhei Nakamura (C)
7Tomohiro Abe (3B)7Akihisa Nishida (1B)
8Tsubasa Aizawa (C)8Keiji Obiki (SS)
9Aren Kuri (P)9Ross Ohlendorf (P)

Ross Ohlendorf, on his fourth outing as starter, was looking for his first win, but it was clear from the outset that wasn’t going to happen. Though he escaped the first inning unscathed, he was not looking good, and the meltdown came shortly thereafter in the second. Aizawa and Kuri made it on base with back-to-back walks followed by back-to-back RBIs by Tanaka and Kikuchi to make things 0-3.

Things were looking bad for Tokyo, but the birds actually tied things up 3-3 in the bottom of the second with hits from Yuhei, Nakamura, Nishida and Sakaguchi plus a grounder from Obiki.

With Ohlendorf pulled for a pinch hitter in the second, the young Hoshi was brought in from the third in one of those, “well, kid, the starter crashed and burned, so good luck”-type situations. Hoshi acquitted himself extremely well over the next four innings, giving up four hits and no runs.

Meanwhile, Tokyo put one more run on the board in the form of a solo HR from Yuuuuuuheeeeei. 4-3.

With Hoshi’s excellent-starter-not-starter outing and a solid bench of relievers behind him, it looked like Tokyo might actually pull this one out – and might have, if the rain gods had blessed the team with an early finish like on the previous day.

But it was not to be. Sugiura came in in the seventh and, after looking great striking out Tanaka and Kikuchi in short order, gave up a solo shot to Maru. 4-4.

The damage increased when the usually-reliable Ishiyama decided to copy Ohlendorf and give up three runs in the eighth to make it 4-7. The end.

Game notes:

  • Ishiyama officially took the loss for this one, but it’s clear Ohlendorf needs some more time to find his footing with the Swallows. He’s been sent down to the farm team to do just that.
  • Ohlendorf moving down means there’s a spot open for a foreign player on the top team, and it looks like Guilmet is getting the call up.
  • Important personal lesson for me this week: do not go to a game with friends who are fans of the opposing team, no matter how much you like them personally.