Hitoki Iwase set a new NPB record when he struck out Hiroki Kokubo and closed out his 287th game of his career.
UPDATE 10:36pm - Daily Sports has posted Iwase's post-game comments:
How are you feeling right now?
I'm glad I was able to get it over with on the first attempt.
And you got it at home.
I just want to thank the players [for the opportunity].
What were you feeling while you were on the mound?
I wasn't really thinking [about the record] and was just pitching as I usually do.
How do you feel now that you've set a new record?
Hmm, I wonder... I guess, I'm happy.
What do you think helped you set this new record?
I want to thank my parents.
And who would you like to share this happiness with?
You've save a lot of games. Any of them particularly memorable?
The Nippon Series [game].
You're talking about the perfect game you helped close [on 11/1/2007]?
My legs have never shaken so much, other than during opening day and the Nippon Series.
Your next goal?
I'll work hard for 300 next.
UPDATE 6/17 @ 12:50am - Sanspo has posted a brief interview:
Who would you like to share you happiness with?
My parents. I really want to thank both of them. They were the ones that brought me into this world.
Your thoughts on breaking the record.
Unlike the time when I tied the record, my phone is now ringing constantly. I'm glad I was able to break the record.
What were you feeling during the hero interview?
I couldn't really say anything funny, so I had to be my usual self. The entire park celebrated it and the cheers really sunk in.
What were some of the difficulties [you experienced while breaking the record]?
There were a lot of difficulties [over the years]. Too many to really remember. The last few years, I've been booed a lot. I need to make sure I can pitch well.
Your next goal?
During my [hero interview] I mentioned 300 [saves], but [what I really wanted to say is that] my goal is to throw every pitch well and [help the team] win.
Top 10 in Saves
|Name JPN||Name ENG||Sv||G|
|岩瀬 仁紀||Iwase, Hitoki||287||705|
|高津 臣吾||Takatsu, Shingo||286||598|
|佐々木 主浩||Sasaki, Kazuhiro||252||439|
|小林 雅英||Kobayashi, Masahide||228||463|
|江夏 豊||Enatsu, Yutaka||193||829|
|馬原 孝浩||Mahara, Takahiro||169||298|
|藤川 球児||Fujikawa, Kyuji||168||476|
|永川 勝浩||Nagakawa, Katsuhiro||164||374|
|豊田 清||Toyoda, Kiyoshi||157||531|
Player names in italics are still active.