May 3rd 2017, vs. Hanshin

May 3rd, 2017

Clean Hanshin Tigers LogoHanshin Tigers 8TS Logo 150x transparent

Tokyo Swallows 4

Streak: Lost 1         Last 5: LWWWL

(Meiji Jingu Stadium)

W: Iwasada (2-1 ; 3.80 ERA)
L: Yamanaka (0-3 ; 2.73)
6 IP | 106 NP | 5 H | 5 K | 1 BB | 1 HBP | 2 R | 1 ER

The Swallows mini winning streak came to an end at the hands of Hanshin. Yamanaka did his part with another decent shift, the offence did put up some runs on the board with help from the Tigers’ sloppiness, but it wasn’t enough as the bullpen faltered to let this one get away from them late.

 Hanshin Tokyo
1Araki (1B)1Sakaguchi (CF)
2Uemoto (2B)2Ohbiki (SS)
3Itoi (CF)3Yamada (2B)
4Fukudome (RF)4Balentien (LF)
5Takayama (LF)5Yuhei (RF)
6Toritani (3B)6Nakamura (C)
7Itohara (SS)7Araki (1B)
8Okazaki (C)8Yachi (3B)
9Iwasada (SP)9Yamanaka (SP)
1 IP | 0 ER
1 IP | 3 ER
1 IP | 3 ER

Tokyo took their only lead of the game in the 1st, with a bit of help from Tigers’ started Iwasada. Singles from Sakaguchi, Yamada got the ball rolling, before Yuhei was plunked to load the bases. Nakamura then worked a seven pitch walk to make it 1-0 Tokyo.

The starting arms then took control until Hanshin finally landed a punch against Yamanaka in the 6th. A single to left put one man on (with Balentien juggling the transfer allowing the runner to reach second on the error) , then Yamanaka opted to throw to third on a grounder to the pitcher, both runners ending up safe on the fielder’s choice putting men on the corners with no outs on the board. Subsequent RBI singles from Itoi (with Yamanaka too slow covering first base on the grounder to first)  and Toritani made it 2-1 Hanshin.

The Tigers then stretched their lead in the top of the 8th, as Guilmet allowed three runs to reach home for 5-1.

The Swallows then capitalised on more generosity from the opposition, in this case set-up man Mateo, to get themselves back in the game. Singles from Ohbiki and Yamada put two on, before Nakamura became the second Swallow of the night to be hit to load the bases. They then scored their second run the same way as their first, as Ohmatsu walked to put the score at 5-2. With Yachi at the plate, a passed ball allowed the third run to score before Mateo played hot potato with the ball trying to field a Yachi grounder allowing one more run to score on the error, 5-4.

Alas that was all just a tease as Hara allowed three runs off four hits in the 9th and we had ourselves a “the opposition gifted us most of our runs and we still messed it up” 8-4 Hanshin Final.

Tomorrow will see Ishikawa take on Fujinami in the series’ rubber game. First pitch is scheduled for 1pm.

About David Watkins

David is a baseball bothering Brummie who spends a fair portion of his life fretting over the Tokyo Swallows and the WORLD'S GREATEST FOOTBALL TEAM, Aston Villa. He completes the quartet of abusive sporting relationships by being a die hard New York Knicks and Mets fan. You can find him on twitter: @yakulto