Nippon Ham Fighters
...The Fighters collected 11 hits and left 13 men on base last night. They became the first team in Nippon Series history to leave a runner on in every inning and get shut-out.
...Q&A with Masataka Nashida via Sanspo:
On losing the championships...
More than being down, I just really wish we had gone to a Game 7. I said to the players, "we went through a lot of things, you guys did a great job."
On being shut-out...
After they scored that first run, we had a chance to score as well, but we just couldn't take advantage.
On looking back over the series...
We were able to play our game, but the Giants were the better team. I'm frustrated / upset, but it was still a good series.
On being 2-4...
I have to come to terms that we were only able to win 2 games and move on to focusing on becoming champs [next season].
On next season...
We battled it out this season. And while I think we've become a stronger team because of that, I'd still like to bring in younger players.
...The last time the Giants held a victory parade for their championship in 2002, 400,000 people showed up. The Giants are expecting a much larger crowd this time around.
Victory parade course:
Start from Yomiuri Shimbun HQ
Pass by in front of the Nihonbashi Mitsukoshi
Go down Chuo Street
End at Ginza 8-chome
The players will ride on three double-decker buses.
...The Giants went through 2 barrels of sake, 2,000 bottles of beer, and 240 bottles of champagne in 15 minutes during their victory celebration last night. Alex Ramirez took a picture and shook hands with each of his teammates.
Opening celebration comments:
Takuo Takihana (owner) -
The regular season, the Climax Series, the Nippon Series... I'm grateful to all of you that fought through a 154 game schedule.
Tatsunori Hara (manager) -
It was a long year. We've created another legend.
Shinnosuke Abe (player rep) -
It seems like we'll be getting championship rings, so thank Mr. Owner!
...Shun Tono became the 18th pitcher to last less than an inning during the Nippon Series.
...The 3 saves by Marc Kroon tied a Nippon Series record. He also tied a Nippon Series record by saving three games in three consecutive appearances.
...Hideki Matsui's comments:
The Giants were my team for 10 years so I'm extremely happy. I'm sure the fans must be happy that the team won using a lot of young players. ... I'm sure it's just by chance that they won at the same time I won.
...Q&A with Tatsunori Hara via Sanspo:
On being thrown up in the air 10 times...
For the Giants, becoming champs is the top. I'm speechless. I actually wanted to be a part of the group of people tossing me up into the air.
Reasons for winning...
I think we were the better team. In close games, pitching, power hitting... I think the Giants were a bit better in all these areas.
Compared to your last championship...
In 2002 it was a team that Shigeo Nagashima put together. The team fell after that, but to rebuild and then win again is big.
You were also the WBC manager this year...
It was just about a year ago that I got the call. I was worried. But the players, the staff, they all worked to melt my worries away. In looking back, I think there was a lot of stability.
On a great season...
Nothing can top this. But we can't stop here. Myself, and this team, will continue to push forward.