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Seibu, Orix, Lotte: August 11, 2012

by on Aug.11, 2012 @ 11:30 am, under NPB

Seibu Lions

Takeya Nakamura has missed the last few games with pain in his left knee.  Source: Nikkan Sports 8/11/2012

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Since July 14 (nineteen games), Hiroyuki Nakajima is 33-for-72 with two homers, 16 RBI, and a slash line of .458/.506/.639.

Orix Buffaloes

Pitching coaches Motoyuki Akahori and Nobuyuki Hoshino had actually persuaded Akinobu Okada not to demote Shinya Nakayama.  Unfortunately for the two pitching coaches, Nakayama did not pitch particularly well on Friday and took the loss: 0.2 IP, 5 BF, 28 NP, 1 H, 2 SO, 2 BB, 2 R, 2 ER.  Source: Daily Sports 8/11/2012

Chiba Lotte Marines

With the bases loaded, Katsuya Kakunaka is 7-for-11 with 14 RBI.

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So far this month (nine games), Josh Whitesell is 17-for-38 with four homers, 13 RBI, and a slash line of .447/.488/.789.

18 comments on “Seibu, Orix, Lotte: August 11, 2012

  1. Dylan

    Orix has the worst front office, a bad manager, stupid coaches and underachieving players. No wonder they are in last place.

  2. Dylan

    Well, tonight I watched idiot Okada make four managing mistakes in the last 4 innings. He turned a 2-1 win into a 3-2 loss. He’s been doing it all year. What a fool.

  3. Tim

    Not only Orix, all six PL teams are doing horrible this season. The Fighters will take the 1st place because they have been having more lucks than the others. CL are much more worth-watching this season. And CL will take Nippon series. I hope it is the Carps. With strong rotation they can manage to do like Lotte did two years ago.

    1. Nathan

      I wholeheartely disagree with your statement. CL has been all YG. They are heads and shoulders above everyone else. It’s ridiculous how good they are. Perhaps the Carps can ‘challenge’ YG with MaKen and Nomura, but I don’t see it. Can those two win vs Sugiuchi and Utsumi? The series isn’t over after 2 games and the Giants have better pitching and as we all know, better hitting. The Carps’ hitting is just blah.. and their defense is so shitty that I feel like I am watching little league baseball at times. The Dragons can’t hit for shit to win vs YG and the Swallows just… suck. CL is a one man race really, and that’s all there is to it.

      The Fighters are in the first place because of solid pitching and hitting. Takeda and Yoshikawa have been good throughout the season. Both Wolfe and Yagi have been pretty solid.. and if Saitoh can come back with the shit straightened up, I don’t see them slipping.
      I personally think their hitting (1-6) is just as good as YG. That said, the Marines could challenge them if they get their pitching right and same goes with the Eagles. The Hawks could make a push as well.

      For the reasons stated above, I find PL much more exciting to watch. (I do enjoy watching MaKen and Nomura pitch though ;) )

    2. Tim

      To make it clear, what I meant is all about pitching. CL has lost a lot of enjoyable starters prior to this season due to MLB and CL transfer, and due to injuries or bad forms. Before the season starts who can imagine that Otonari is the leading starts now? (Though I have to admit that he is having great season). Only Nippon Ham’s Yoshikawa and Softbank’s Takeda are fun to watch now (Karakawa is on disable list now). Meanwhile, there are numerous of CL starting pitchers are doing great jobs. That’s why I prefer watch those guys.
      I am not a Carp fan but I hope the Carps would make it to Nippon series because I just cannot stand the Giants and fed up with the Dragons’ boring baseball. CL needs someting new to make changes and the Hiroshima is the only hope right now. Of course, I know how hard it would be to defeat the Giants this season. But I think Carps have a (although little) chance to beat Yomiuri in a 3-game series and Chunichi in 6-game series. So, I hope Chunichi will take the first during regular season instead of Yomiuri. Just hope.

    3. Steve Novosel

      Obviously I am a PL fan but objectively I think the PL is quite strong this year, that’s why all the teams are so closely bunched. Fighters clearly have the best package of pitching and offense – it’s going to be tough for any team if they need to play 6 in Sapporo in October. Lotte’s best chance is getting healthy and sneaking into first to get some extra rest, plus getting more aggressive on the basepaths and less reliant on the pen. I still don’t see how the Hawks fit in anywhere, they seem to have too many holes this year. Seibu can outscore anyone but their pitching is so bad. Still, they could make some noise in a playoff series.

      Yomiuri is going to be out of competitive shape by the time Climax rolls around as they will have been assured a spot for well over a month – will they be able to put it back together when the pressure is back on? Anything can happen.

    4. Tim

      It was, of course, boring when Softbank dominated the league last year or when Nippon Ham comfortably clinched first in 2009. Seasons 2008 and 2010 (including post season) were very dramatic with “all the teams are so closely bunched.” It is happening this season, too, but the baseball out there is not really good, not really attractive. So, from my point of view, PL teams kind of downgrade this season. It could be that we have different opinion because you team is still in the race, whereas my team is still in trouble.

  4. IM

    Sure, Yomiuri is scary now that they have some legit starting pitching, but they aren’t unbeatable. They’ve had some hitters underperform and have some holes in their lineup.
    Surprised at the Dragons hate and Carp love.
    Carp have a great 1-2 pitching combo and a solid 3, and that would make them competitive in a 3-game series, but that’s about it. Carp probably have the worst lineup in the CL, they are a sub-.500 team!
    Sorry haters, but Chunichi’s starting pitching is as deep as anyone and their bullpen is too. That’s why they keep going to the Japan Series and have a good shot to go again. They will need Blanco back and healthy, but they’ve been better offensively this year than they’ve been lately.
    Obviously, Yomiuri is the favorite, but I don’t see them running away with it completely.

    1. Tim

      Yes, I like the Hawks in PL and Carps in CL. Maybe I am the only one here like time. And I know that I have a weird taste for sport teams. Not only baseball but also other sports. I love freak teams.

    2. Steve Novosel

      There’s no love for the Dragons because they are boring. Same players every year. No exciting baseball. Big budget team. They should be competitive due to their budget, but they simply aren’t exciting. They are the Softbank of the CL without the track record, though this year Softbank has a lot of new and interesting blood. The Dragons would be a bit more exciting if they had an everyday starter under the age of 35.

      The Carp are rarely contending in recent years, they have exciting young players and a great fan base. They’re an underdog story – what objective fan doesn’t want to see them make a run?

      But of course the Dragons should be competitive, and it will most likely be a Yomiuri v Chunichi 2nd stage. ZZZZZZzzzzz…..

    3. Nathan

      Much like what Steve said, the Dragons get no love because of their ever-boring baseball. You might as well fill the scoreboard with 0’s if Oshima is having an off day at the plate. Wada looks like a grandfather. Tanishige looks like a barber down the street. Yamazaki should have turned to prowrestling. Morino looks like he could be a good cook. All jokes aside, Oshima is probably the only player that is worth watching. Asao is out, so yeah, Oshima.

      As good as the Giants are, at least they aren’t a boring team to watch. They are boring in the sense that they are too good for everyone, but they play exciting baseball and put up some mad runs.

      The PL climax series is gonna be fun to watch for sure. Teams don’t have distinct adv over the others, so every game will be a toss up.

      Steve- Did you think the Hawks were boring to watch last year? I loved watching Kawasaki & Honda 1-2 punch along with the rest of the hitters. Suguichi & Wada – as good as it gets.

    4. Steve Novosel

      I wouldn’t say Softbank’s baseball was boring to watch last year – they run a lot, and run successfully, which is always exciting, but I think their story was really boring last year. A bunch of guys who have played together a lot without breaking through until they paid way more than anyone in PL could for one of the best hitters in Japan. And Hosokawa. And Cabrera. If they spent enough money they’d finally get a championship – quite Yankee-esque. Their 17.5 game lead was pretty boring, too.

      But on the field they were great – amazing starting rotation with Sugiuchi/Wada/Houlton, Honda on the basepaths, Matsuda at the plate. I hated watching Kawasaki, actually – he’s the sort of player I would love on my team but hate when he’s not :) Unfair of me!

      I’d rather the narrative of the unexpected champion (Lotte, first to worst to first!), or the young guys starting to shine (like if Carp or Rakuten make a move this year).

      The Giants are not a boring team either but their inevitable presence is – and their ouenka are easily the worst in Japan. That’s just pure anti-Kyojin feeling there!

  5. Tim

    In my defense, Chunichi and Softbank are not the same. Softbank always have much younger players both pitchers and position players.
    The common between 2 teams is the starting line-up and starting pitchers are quite predictable. But why should they make changes if the substitutions are doing worse year over year? Would you do that if you have to responsible for the results? There is good chance that you would mess it up instead of making some new and exciting baseball. You might say that Lotte introduce new faces each year, but would they do that if there was not a lot of injuries or some holes in the starting line up?

    1. Steve Novosel

      Yeah, I do think Lotte would have introduced new faces without injuries or holes. Look at the last few top draft picks – Fujioka (started the 3rd game of the season, plus Masuda was an all star), Ishimine (very quickly in the starting lineup despite tons of outfielders on the team, Koike and Minami are at ichi-gun now), T Ogino (starter from day 1, plus Ohtani and especially Kiyota have been important players), Kimura (OK, bad example, and a very bad draft except for Ueno and Okada in the Ikusei draft, though Sumi has also made it to the 70 man roster recently), Karakawa (started straight out of HS).

      You have to introduce new faces even though you have established players. That’s how the new players get experience. Have the Donoues ever really gotten a chance at Chunichi, for example? What the heck is Chunichi going to do for a Tanishige replacement?

  6. IM

    Yeah, I know everyone thinks Chunichi is boring, just thought it was funny that everyone was writing them off, just because you all don’t like them.
    The Dragons will have to get younger at some point, but you don’t blow up what is working. Wada is still knocking the ball around, Ibata is getting on base a lot and still one of the slickest fielding SS in Japan, good to have a veteran behind the plate as well.
    Their problem is that none of the young guys has stepped up, other than Oshima. Hirata looked like he might, but has struggled this year. N. Donoue has played quite a bit filling in for injured vets and hasn’t ever shown enough at the plate to win an everyday spot. I would like to see T. Donoue play more at RF/1B and more of the young guys at catcher spelling Tanishige.

    1. Tim

      Yeah, I totally agree with IM. Everyone wants to have fresh faces each and every year. Who does not like to see a rookie like Mike Trout in their team? But if the roockies cannot do better in both defense and offense compared with the vets after getting a ton of shots, they just cannot crack starting line-up.
      In these years, Lotte have picked many rookies from Universities and Industrial teams (of course, they have done very great job with drafting) so that they can play at ichi-gun level right away. Meanwhile, Softbank (and I guess Chinichi, too) already have many secured spots in starting line-up, so, they tend to draft more high school kids, slowly and patietly grow those kids. Beside that, I have to admit that Softbank have more money to buy good free agent and foreign players.
      So, my though is that team strategies are completely different. You just cannot compare them. And one day, may be pretty soon, things might flip-flop. Marines, which would have solid starting pitchers and batters that will stay with them for years, will look into high school boys more often. And Softbank have to look for rookies graduate from Universities to instantly fill their holes.

    2. Steve Novosel

      Tim, that’s a fantastic point. Each team needs to have a development strategy that suits their current roster and their strengths. Softbank does have a really good mix of veterans and younger players now, and honestly they are more compelling than they have been in years (to me, of course).

      Chunichi is just flirting with disaster, though. Of course they should be very competitive in the Climax Series this year but it’s not much of a stretch to see virtually all of their current stars fall off very dramatically all at once due to their age. Baseball is the easiest sport to mix in new faces, though – it’s easy to give a veteran a few days rest and let a young player start a few games, or give an up and coming pitcher a chance at a start or two, and still be very competitive.

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