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NPB Roundup – 9/28: Giants lose, fall behind Tigers by half game in the CL

by on Sep.28, 2008 @ 8:45 am, under NPB

Central League

The Hiroshima Carp beat the Yakult Swallows, 6-3.

The Carp launched three homers in beating the Swallows in their final home game of the season. Kenta Maeda was responsible for one of those and also managed to toss 7 quality innings of 2-run (none earned), 8 hit ball. Katsuhiro Nagakawa tossed the final 2 innings of the 9th to record his 37th save of the season.

The Swallows couldn't get much going against the Carp despite their 10 hits over 9 innings. They had a pretty good chance to score some runs in the top of the 2nd when they loaded the bases with 2 outs, but with it being early in the game, the Swallows couldn't lift their starting pitcher for a more capable bat and the inning promptly ended with Ryo Kawashima flying out to right.

NOTES: The Carp went 5-3-1 over their final homestand. The attendance over those 9 games: 23,901; 29,632; 29,960; 29,950; 30,440; 29,627; 29,867; 29,632; 30,609 (max cap: 31,984). ... Norichika Aoki went 1-for-5 with an RBI and a run scored.

Code:
     1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9    R   H   E
YAK  0  0  0  0  0  0  2  0  1    3   10  1
HIR  2  0  0  1  2  1  0  0  x    6   8   2

WP: Kenta Maeda (8-2)  SV: Katsuhiro Nagakawa (37)
LP: Ryo Kawashima (7-7)
HR: YAK: None. HIR: Alex Ochoa (15), Kenta Maeda (1),
Kenta Kurihara (21).

Yakult Swallows
                     IP   BF  NP   H  HR  K  BB  HBP  ER  R
Ryo Kawashima     L  5.0  24  87   4  3   3  5    0   5   5
Masahiro Yoshikawa   1.0  5   11   3  0   0  0    0   1   1
Takehiko Oshimoto    1.0  3   8    1  0   0  0    0   0   0
Masao Kida           1.0  3   14   0  0   1  0    0   0   0

Hiroshima Carp
                     IP   BF  NP   H  HR  K  BB  HBP  ER  R
Kenta Maeda       W  7.0  31  104  8  0   1  1    0   0   2
Mike Schultz         1.0  3   10   0  0   0  0    0   0   0
Tomohiro Umetsu      0.1  3   7    2  0   0  0    0   1   1
Katsuhiro Nagakawa S 0.2  2   13   0  0   1  0    0   0   0

The Chunichi Dragons beat the Yomiuri Giants, 1-0.

Koji Uehara pitched well enough to win, but unfortunately Weiyin Chen and Hitoki Iwase pitched even better. The one mistake Uehara made was in the bottom of the 8th. He retired the first two batters on fly balls and up came Masahiro Araki. Araki is a light-hitting, number 2 slot, middle infielder who is probably more at home play small ball and moving runners over or slapping singles. But on this day, things would be different.

After falling behind 0-2, Araki managed to foul off the third pitch, took the fourth pitch for a ball, fouled off the fifth pitch, and then drilled the 6th pitch into the left field stands for his 4th home run of the season. And it was all the Dragons would need to beat the Giants.

In all fairness to the Giants, they did lose Michihiro Ogasawara in the first inning after getting hit by a pitch in the right hand. But whether or not his presence would have actually changed things, who really knows. Afterall, Chen and Iwase managed to hold Alex Ramirez, Seung-Yeop Lee, Yoshimoto Tani, and Abe Shinnosuke to a combined 2-for-12 with 3 strike outs.

NOTES: Prior to tonight's start, Uehara was 3-0 with a 2.86 ERA in his last 5 starts (28.1 IP, 23 H, 4 HR, 9 ER). The longest he went in those 5 starts was 7.1 innings (he averaged 5.2 innings and 91.4 pitches per start over the same time period).

Code:
     1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9    R   H   E
YOM  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0    0   5   0
CHU  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  1  x    1   6   0

WP: Weiyin Chen (7-5)   SV: Hitoki Iwase (33)
LP: Koji Uehara (5-5)
HR: YOM: None. CHU: Masahiro Araki (4).

Yomiuri Giants
                     IP   BF  NP   H  HR  K  BB  HBP  ER  R
Koji Uehara       L  8.0  30  106  6  1   5  1    0   1   1

Chunichi Dragons
                     IP   BF  NP   H  HR  K  BB  HBP  ER  R
Weiyin Chen       W  8.0  27  109  5  0   7  0    1   0   0
Hitoki Iwase      S  1.0  3   12   0  0   0  0    0   0   0

The Hanshin Tigers and Yokohama Bay Stars had the day off.

Code:
                   W   L   T  WPCT  GB
Hanshin Tigers     79  54  2  .594  -
Yomiuri Giants     79  55  3  .590  0.5
Chunichi Dragons   67  65  5  .508  11.5
-----------------------------------------
Hiroshima Carp     67  65  5  .508  11.5
Yakult Swallows    59  70  3  .457  18
Yokohama Bay Stars 43  87  2  .331  34.5


The Hiroshima Carp bid the stadium farewell

Pacific League

The Orix Buffaloes beat the Seibu Lions, 7-2.

Satoshi Omatsu went the distance in securing his 15th victory of the season. Omatsu held the meat of the Lions order to 2 hits (3-6 hitters) and an RBI over 15 plate appearances. Takumi Kuriyama was the only hitter in the lineup to do well against Omatsu, going 2-for-4 with a homer, 2 runs scored, and a strike out.

Matthew Kinney sailed through the first 3 innings, retiring 9 straight batters before running into some trouble in the 4th when the inning began with the first runner reaching second on a bad throw to first. That runner would later score to tie the game at one. And despite retiring the first batter of the 5th on pop-up to third, Kinney proceeded to give up 3 straight singles before recording the second out of the inning on a strike out. But the inning would not end there as the next batter, Alex Cabrera, came up with a 2-run single to give the Buffaloes 3 run lead.

The Buffaloes would score 3 more runs in the 6th to make the score 7-1, which ended up being more than enough as the Lions would manage only one more run over the last 4 frames.

NOTES: The Lions have now lost 6 straight and are 3-7 over their last 10. ... Takeya Nakamura drove in his 98th run of the season. He also struck out for the 158th time.

Code:
     1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9    R   H   E
ORI  0  0  1  3  3  0  0  0  0    7   11  0
SEI  1  0  0  0  0  1  0  0  0    2   5   1

WP: Satoshi Komatsu (15-3)
LP: Matthew Kinney (2-4)
HR: ORI: None. SEI: Takumi Kuriyama (10).

Orix Buffaloes
                     IP   BF  NP   H  HR  K  BB  HBP  ER  R
Satoshi Komatsu   W  9.0  32  145  5  1   8  1    0   2   2

Seibu Lions
                     IP   BF  NP   H  HR  K  BB  HBP  ER  R
Matthew Kinney    L  4.2  21  78   7  0   7  0    0   3   4
Koji Mitsui          1.1  9   34   4  0   1  1    0   3   3
Shinya Okamoto       2.0  6   16   0  0   2  0    0   0   0
Koji Onuma           1.0  3   13   0  0   0  0    0   0   0

The Chiba Lotte Marines beat the Nippon Ham Fighters, 4-1.

Yoshihisa Naruse pitched a strong game today, giving up only 1 run on 2 hits and 3 walks over 7 innings. He also struck out 10. Tadahiro Ogino tossed the 9th for his 29 save of the season.

Despite scattering 8 hits over the first 7 innings, the Marines failed to score any runs. It wasn't until the 8th that the Marines were finally able to get something together -- they ended up sending 10 batters to the plate (6-for-9, double, IBB, 4 runs scored). Perhaps a coincidence, the Fighters replaced Shugo Fujii with Yoshinori Tateyama prior to the start of the inning.

NOTES: Yoshihisa Naruse hasn't been nearly as effective this year, as he was last year when he went 16-1 with a 1.82 ERA. ... Four Marines had 2 or more hits in the game: Daisuke Hayakawa (2-for-5), Tomoya Satozaki (3-for-4), Kazuya Fukuura (2-for-2, double), Saburo Omura (4-for-5).

Code:
     1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9    R   H   E
LOT  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  4  0    4   15  2
HAM  0  0  0  0  1  0  0  0  0    1   3   1

WP: Yoshihisa Naruse (8-6)   SV: Tadahiro Ogino (29)
LP: Yoshinori Tateyama (1-2)
HR: LOT: None. HAM: None.

Chiba Lotte Marines
                     IP   BF  NP   H  HR  K  BB  HBP  ER  R
Yoshihisa Naruse  W  7.0  26  121  2  0   10 3    0   1   1
Yusuke Kawasaki      1.0  4   16   0  0   1  1    0   0   0
Tadahiro Ogino    S  1.0  4   14   1  0   0  0    0   0   0

Nippon Ham Fighters
                     IP   BF  NP   H  HR  K  BB  HBP  ER  R
Shugo Fujii          7.0  27  96   8  0   3  0    0   0   0
Yoshinori Tateyama L 0.2  7   19   4  0   0  1    0   4   4
Masaru Takeda        0.1  3   10   2  0   0  0    0   0   0
Hisashi Takeda       0.2  2   8    0  0   0  1    0   0   0
Naoki Miyanishi      0.1  3   13   1  0   0  1    0   0   0

The Softbank Hawks beat the Rakuten Golden Eagles, 7-2.

After losing 7 straight games, the Hawks have finally won a game. And they beat one of the hottest teams in the NPB right now.

The game was decided early on with the Hawks sending 9 batters to the plate to start the game (4-for-8, BB, HR, 5 runs scored). Yasuhiro Ichiba walked lead-off batter Naoyuki Omura, who would later get to third after a bad throw to second in an attempt to gun him down stealing and then score on an infield hit to Nobuhiro Matsuda. Matsuda would then score on Nobuhiko Matsunaka's 25th homer of the season to give the Hawks a 3-run lead. 2 more runs would score before the inning would finally end (Jose Fernandez botched a play at third to extend the inning).

Rick Guttormson did a stellar job keeping the Eagles at bay, despite being a 5-run lead early on in the game. There was really only one inning where Guttormson ran into trouble and that was when he gave up a triple to Masato Nakamura in the 3rd, who would score on a grounder to second by the next batter, Kensuke Uchimura. The second run the Eagles scored didn't come until the 9th when Takeshi Yamasaki hit his 24th home run of the season.

NOTES: In watching a handful of Rakuten games at Kleenex Stadium, the one area the Eagles really need to work on is defense. Not including this game, the Eagles have given up 48 of the 557 runs they have given up were unearned. I'm not quite sure where that puts the Eagles with the rest of the league, but I think they give up too many easy runs.

Code:
     1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9    R   H   E
SOF  5  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  2    7   9   1
RAK  0  0  1  0  0  0  0  0  1    2   4   3

WP: Rick Guttormson (5-7)
LP: Yasuhiro Ichiba (0-3)
HR: SOF: Nobuhiko Matsunaka (25). RAK: Takeshi Yamasaki (24).

Softbank Hawks
                     IP   BF  NP   H  HR  K  BB  HBP  ER  R
Rick Guttormson   W  9.0  33  112  4  1   5  2    0   2   2

Rakuten Golden Eagles
                     IP   BF  NP   H  HR  K  BB  HBP  ER  R
Yasuhiro Ichiba   L  1.0  10  57   4  1   2  2    0   2   5
Hisashi Kitani       5.0  16  61   2  0   2  0    0   0   0
Kenta Satake         1.0  3   18   0  0   0  0    0   0   0
Marcus Gwyn          1.0  5   18   1  0   0  1    0   0   0
Akira Matsumoto      1.0  6   28   2  0   0  1    0   2   2
Code:
                   W   L   T  WPCT  GB
Seibu Lions        75  62  4  .547  --
Orix Buffaloes     73  68  1  .518  4
Lotte Marines      71  68  1  .511  5
-----------------------------------------
Ham Fighters       71  69  2  .507  5.5
Rakuten Eagles     61  71  3  .462  11.5
Softbank Hawks     62  73  3  .459  12