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Tag: 2009 Postseason

Yu Darvish ok for Game 7?

by on Nov.07, 2009 @ 3:15 am, under NPB, Postseason
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So far, it still seems like Yu Darvish will be able to pitch game 7, assuming the Fighters win Game 6.

Masataka Nashida also said that Darvish will not be on the roster for Game 6 based on the assumption that there will be a Game 7 and that he will be able to start Game 7.

Darvish did not have a bullpen session on Friday and instead spent some time doing some weight training.  He did, however, have a bullpen session on Thursday (11/5) where he was able to throw all his pitches.

Said Masato Ishii, "Based on his session on Thursday, I think he'll be ok to pitch."

Nippon Series News and Notes: Game 6 Starters

by on Nov.07, 2009 @ 3:06 am, under NPB, Postseason
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...Possible starters for Game 6 are Shun Tono (YOM) and Masaru Takeda (HAM).

...TV ratings for Game 5 (Nippon TV) came in at 19.0% for the Kanto area.

Nippon Ham Fighters

...The Fighters had the day off.

...Masataka Nashida on Game 6:

We have home field advantage.  And we need to win.  It's that simple.

...Masaru Takada on his start:

Just leave it up to me.  We've come this far, I just need to do it. ... If we were up 3-2, I think I might be more nervous.

Yomiuri Giants

...Michihiro Ogasawara was the only Giants' position player to work out at the Sapporo Dome Friday.

Ogasawara worked out for about an hour and did some running and played some catch.

Pitchers Shun Tono, Tetsuya Utsumi, and Wirfin Obispo were the only other players to practice on Friday.

...About 200 fans greeted the Giants at New Chitose Airport in Hokkaido as the Giants try not to make the same mistake they made last season when the Seibu Lions came roaring back, down 3 games to 2.

...Tatsunori Hara on Game 6:

We'll just play as we usually do.  We've lost when our starters haven't pitched well so I'll be counting on them to keep us in the game.  Our goal is to win one more game.  One game, one victory, I want this to team to become Nippon Series champs.

Nippon Series News and Notes: TV ratings, Greisinger, Ohno, and Darvish

by on Nov.06, 2009 @ 12:59 pm, under NPB, Postseason
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...More on the TV ratings from Game 3:

Ratings for the game came in at 17.2%, with 22.8% of all TV tuned into the game.

The high during the game was 26.3% (when Shinnosuke Abe came up to bat with the bases loaded and 2 out in the 8th).

Ratings for last year's Game 3 was 18%.

Ratings for the Sapporo region came in at 37.2%, with 46.4% of all TVs tuned into the game.

...Ratings for Game 4 (broadcast on Nippon TV):

Ratings for the game came in at 15.9% for the Kanto region.

The high during the game was 24.3% (during Matsumoto's at bat in the 5th).

Ratings at the end of the game were at 7.5%.

Ratings for last year's Game 4 was 15.7%.

Ratings for the Sapporo region were 43.5%, second only to the Game 5 of the 2006 Nippon Series that came in at 52.5%).  The high was 54.5% (during Tanaka's at bat in the 8th).

A quiz variety program that was broadcast at the same time on another channel garnered a higher rating at 16.8%.

...Shota Ohno (HAM) became the first first-year catcher to start a Nippon Series game.

...Seth Greisinger (YOM) will likely be shutdown for the rest of  the season -- the inflammation in his right elbow apparently has not gotten any better.

...Pitching coach Masato Yoshii's comment on Yu Darvish (HAM) making another appearance during the Nippon Series:

I don't think he'll be making any appearances in relief.  If he pitches, it'll be to start.

At this point, a Game 7 start seems most likely.

...The Giants had prepared beer and sake at Tokyo Dome in case they won the Nippon Series in Tokyo.  That obviously won't be happening now as the Series heads back to Hokkaido.  But no worries, the team is apparently finished with preparations in Hokkaido as well.

Nippon Series: 2 homers in the bottom of the 9th give the Giants a 3-2 lead in the series

by on Nov.06, 2009 @ 12:06 am, under Game Summaries, NPB, Postseason
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===

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Nippon Ham Fighters 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 2 4 1
Yomiuri Giants 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 2x 3 7 2

Tokyo Dome | Attendance: 45,160 | Time: 2h 57m | Giants lead series, 3-2.

Three home runs in the 9th led to a dramatic finish as the Giants came from behind to beat the Fighters, 3-2.

Two fielding errors helped give the Fighters a 1-0 lead in the top of the second.

Terrmel Sledge (0-for-4, R) reached on a field error by Shigeyuki Furuki (2B).  Eiichi Koyano (2-for-3, BB, 2B) hit a single into center, runners on first and second.  Tomohiro Nioka (0-for-3) hit into a force at second, runners on first and third.  Shota Ohno (0-for-3) struck out for the second out of the inning.  Shugo Fujii (0-for-2) hit a grounder to third that Michihiro Ogaswara (3B) couldn't handle, allowing Sledge to score, runners on first and second.  Kensuke Tanaka ended the inning by flying out to center.

The score remained 1-0 until the bottom of the 8th when the Giants finally managed to push a run across the plate.

Yoshinori Tateyama relieved Fujii to start the inning.  Pinch hitter Seung-Yeop Lee (0-for-0) was hit by a pitch.  Takahiro Suzuki entered the game as a pinch runner and stole second.  Hayato Sakamoto (0-for-3) struck out.  Masanori Hayashi relieved Tateyama.  A bad pick-off attempt allowed Suzuki to advance to third.  Noriyoshi Ohmichi (1-for-1, RBI) followed with a pinch hit single just over the leaping second baseman to tie the game at 1.  Ryota Wakiya pinch ran for Ohmichi.  Both Ogasawara (0-for-4) and Alex Ramirez (2-for-4) flied out to center to end the inning.

In the top of the 9th, the Fighters retook the lead on a 1-out solo homer by Shinji Takahashi (1-for-4, HR, R, RBI).  At that point, it almost seemed as if the Fighters had sealed the victory.  But such would not be the case.

Hisashi Takeda came in to close out the game for the Fighters in the bottom of the 9th.  Yoshiyuki Kamei (1-for-4, HR, R, RBI) led off the inning by hitting a first pitch fastball over the wall in right to tie the game at 2.  An out later, Shinnosuke Abe (1-for-3, HBP, HR, R, RBI) touched all four as he knocked out his 2nd home run of the series to give the Giants a come-from-behind, 3-2 victory.

Missed Opportunities
Fighters
1st: runner on third, 1 out > Inaba struck out and Takahashi grounded out
2nd: runners on first and second, 2 out > Tanaka flied out
4th: runner on second, 1 out > Nioka grounded out, runner on third, Ohno flied out

Giants
3rd: runners on first and second, 2 out > Sakamoto fouled out to left
5th: runner on second, 2 out > Sakamoto flied out

Fighters: 5 LOB, 0 DP
Giants: 6 LOB, 1 DP

News
The Giants outhit the Fighters, 7-4. ... Inaba and Sledge (3 and 5 batters) went a combined 0-for-8 with 3 strike outs and a run scored. ... H. Takeda tossed only 4 pitches in the 9th. ... H. Takeda went 3-0 with 34 saves during the regular season. ... Sho Nakata was not on the Fighters' game roster. ... Takuya Kimura was not on the Giants' game roster. ... The Giants had at least one runner on base in every innings except for the first two. ... Gonzalez Obispo retired 10 straight before giving way to the pen. Yamaguchi continued the streak for another 4 batters before giving up a home run to Takahashi in the 9th.

Nippon Ham Fighters

Name G W L S IP NP BF AB H HR K BB HBP SHF WP BK R ER ERA
Fujii, Shugo 1 0 0 0 7 85 26 22 4 0 3 1 1 2 0 0 0 0 0.000
Tateyama, Yoshinori 3 0 0 0 1/3 9 2 1 0 0 1 0 1 0 0 0 1 0 6.750
Hayashi, Masanori 4 0 0 0 2/3 16 3 3 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0.000
Takeda, Hisashi L 3 0 1 1 1/3 4 3 3 2 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 2 7.714

Yomiuri Giants

Name G W L S IP NP BF AB H HR K BB HBP SHF WP BK R ER ERA
Gonzalez, Dicky 2 1 0 0 7 99 26 25 3 0 4 1 0 0 0 0 1 0 1.459
Yamaguchi, Tetsuya W 3 1 0 0 2 30 8 7 1 1 2 1 0 0 0 0 1 1 1.929

===

...The Giants now have a 65% chance of winning the Nippon Series based on past series' outcomes.

...It seems Yu Darvish is preparing to start game 7.

...Terrmel Sledge doesn't like the Tokyo Dome?  In 2 games at Sapporo Dome, Sledge went 3-for-7 with a home run and 2 RBIs.  In three games at Tokyo Dome, Sledge went 1-for-11 with 4 strike outs.

Game 1: 2-for-4, BB, HR, R, RBI
Game 2: 1-for-3, BB, R, RBI, 1 K
Game 3: 0-for-4, 1 K
Game 4: 1-for-3, BB, 2B, 2 K
Game 5: 0-for-4, R, 1 K

...Masataka Nashida on the game:

Not just the Giants, but baseball in general, is a very scary sport...  Things slowly started to move in the 8th inning.  It's regrettable that we lost, but it was a good game.  It got really crazy at the end.  I think we gave the fans an emotional game.  Perhaps consecutive appearances worked against Hisashi Takeda.

...Tatsunori Hara on the game:

It was dramatic, they did a good job hitting.  Kamei has been defensive in his at bats lately, but he showed us why he won the number 5 spot this year.  And I had confidence in Abe's home run.  The energy from the fans was big.  We will win the series in Hokkaido.

...Noriyoshi Ohmichi on his game-tying hit:

It's been a while since I did something big.  I don't think I've been as nervous during my pro baseball career.  It was a very tiring at bat.  Takahio [Suzuki] was the runner too.  I just wanted to make sure that I didn't strike out or fly out.  I think I did alright.

...Some notable Nippon Series numbers from Game 5:

It was the 33rd time a team won a game on a walk-off.

It was the 13th game to be decided on a walk-off home run.

The Giants have used 4 different second baseman so far in the Series, tying a record:

Ryota Wakiya, Takuya Kimura, Shigeyuki Furuki, and Takayuki Terauchi

Nippon Series: Line-ups for Game 5

by on Nov.05, 2009 @ 6:03 pm, under NPB, Postseason
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Nippon Ham Fighters

Tanaka, Kensuke (2B)
Itoi, Yoshio (CF)
Inaba, Atsunori (RF)
Takahashi, Shinji (1B)
Sledge, Terrmel (LF)
Koyano, Eiichi (3B)
Nioka, Tomohiro (SS)
Ohno, Shota (C)
Fujii, Shugo (SP)

Yomiuri Giants

Sakamoto, Hayato (SS)
Matsumoto, Tetsuya (CF)
Ogasawara, Michihiro (3B)
Ramirez, Alex (LF)
Kamei, Yoshiyuki (1B)
Tani, Yoshitomo (RF)
Abe, Shinnosuke (C)
Furuki, Shigeyuki (2B)
Gonzalez, Dicky (SP)

Nippon Series News and Notes: Game 5 Starters

by on Nov.05, 2009 @ 10:53 am, under NPB, Postseason
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...Game 5 starters will likely be Dicky Gonzalez (YOM) and Shugo Fujii (HAM).

Yomiuri Giants

...Takuya Kimura had a rough night last night.  Not only did he strike out to end the 8th with runners on first and third, but he was also thrown out trying to steal second in the 5th, an out before Hayato Sakamoto walked and Tetsuya Matsumoto singled.

There was also a fielding play in the third that had Kimura go deep into the whole at second to field a grounder by Hichori Morimoto with Kensuke Tanaka on first and 1 out.  Kimura took a look over at second to see if Tanaka might overrun second base.  That didn't happen and by the time Kimura looked over to first, it was took late.

Said Kimura, "I thought the out at first might be difficult so I looked over at second for a possible out.  But after thinking about it later, I should have gone for the out at first.  The team that makes mistakes loses.  In a short series, that could be fatal."

In looking at the replay, first base did seem like a tough go, but had Kimura made the throw right away, it's possible he may have gotten Morimoto out by half a step.

Nippon Series: Fighters tie the series at 2, guaranteed a Sapporo return

by on Nov.05, 2009 @ 1:52 am, under Game Summaries, NPB, Postseason
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===

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Nippon Ham Fighters 0 0 4 0 1 0 1 2 0 8 11 1
Yomiuri Giants 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 3 0 4 13 0

Tokyo Dome | Attendance: 45,133 | Time: 3h 38m | Series tied at 2.

The Fighters explode for 8 runs to take game 4 and guarantee a Nippon Series finish in Sapporo.

Hisanori Takahashi struck out the side to start the game and managed to hold the Fighters at bay in the second despite putting runners on first and third.  But Takahashi couldn't work his way out of the 3rd when the Fighters pushed 4 runs across the plate:

With one out, Kensuke Tanaka (2-for-5, 3B, R) and Hichori Morimoto (1-for-4, R, RBI) reached on singles.  Tanaka stole third on the first pitch to put runners on first and third.  Atsunori Inaba (0-for-4, BB, R) walked to load the bases.  Shinji Takahashi (3-for-5, HR, 3 R, 3 RBI) hit a single into left to give the Fighters a 2-0 lead, runners on first and second.  After Terrmel Sledge (1-for-3, BB, 2B) struck out for the second out of the inning, Eiichi Koyano (3-for-4, 2B, 4 RBI) followed with a bases clearing double into the gap in right.  Tomohiro Nioka (0-for-3) finally ended the inning by grounding out to second.

The Giants returned a run in the bottom of the third after Hayato Sakamoto (1-for-3, 2 BB, R) led off the inning with a double, advance to third on a wild pitch, and scored on a single into right by Tetsuya Matsumoto (3-for-5, R, RBI).

Takahashi's solo homer in the top of the 5th put the Fighters back up by 4 runs.  A squeeze bunt by Morimoto following a 1-out triple by Tanaka in the 7th made it 6-1.  Three consecutive hits to start the 8th led to 2 more runs for the Fighters:

Takahashi led off with a single.  Sledged doubled to right to put runners on second and third.  Toshimasa Konta entered the game as a pinch hitter for Sledge.  Koyano then cleared the bases with a single in left.

The Giants finally got some offense going in the bottom of the 8th:

With 1 out, Matsumoto reached on a fielding error by Yuji Iiyama (SS).  Michihiro Ogasawara (2-for-5, R) singled to right to put runners on first and second.  Alex Ramirez (1-for-4, HR, R, 3 RBI) then nailed a home run into right field stands to bring the Giants to within 4 runs of the Fighters.

Hisashi Takeda entered the game in the bottom of the 9th.  While he did close out the game, he did so only after making things a little interesting.  With runners on first and second and 2 out, Ogasawara lined a hit off the wall in right but was gunned out at second trying to stretch his single into a double.

Missed Opportunities
Fighters
2nd: runners on first and second, 1 out > Nioka grounded into a force, runners on first and third, Tsuruoka struck out
3rd: runner on third, 2 out > Nioka grounded out
8th: runners on first and second, 2 out > Tanaka flied out

Giants
1st: runners on first and second, no out > Ogasawara fouled out to first, Ramirez flied out, and Kamei grounded out
2nd: runner on second, no out > Abe grounded out, runner to third, T. Kimura grounded out, and H. Takahashi grounded out
5th: runners on first and second, 2 out > Ogasawara grounded out
8th: runners on first and third, 2 out > T. Kimura struck out

Fighters: 5 LOB, 0 DP
Giants: 8 LOB, 3 DP

News
The Giants outhit the Fighters 13-11. ... Morimoto failed on a squeeze bunt before he succeeded in laying one down in the 7th. ... Yagi allowed the lead batter to reach base in each of the 5 innings he pitched. ... The Fighters only recorded one 1-2-3 inning against the Giants offense.

Nippon Ham Fighters

Name G W L S IP NP BF AB H HR K BB HBP SHF WP BK R ER ERA
Yagi, Tomoya W 1 1 0 0 5 86 21 19 7 0 0 2 0 0 1 0 1 1 1.800
Tateyama, Yoshinori 2 0 0 0 1 10 3 3 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 9.000
Miyanishi, Naoki 4 0 0 0 1 13 3 3 1 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0.000
Kanamori, Takayuki 2 0 0 0 1/3 23 6 5 3 1 0 1 0 0 0 0 3 2 13.500
Hayashi, Masanori H 3 0 0 0 2/3 9 2 2 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0.000
Takeda, Hisashi 2 0 0 1 1 10 4 4 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0.000

Yomiuri Giants

Name G W L S IP NP BF AB H HR K BB HBP SHF WP BK R ER ERA
Takahashi, Hisanori L 1 0 1 0 5 96 23 21 6 1 7 2 0 0 0 0 5 5 9.000
Toyoda, Kiyoshi 2 0 0 0 1 12 3 3 0 0 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0.000
Kaneto, Norihito 2 0 0 0 1 16 4 3 1 0 1 0 0 1 0 0 1 1 6.750
Kimura, Shota 2 0 0 0 0/3 10 3 3 3 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 2 27.000
Nomaguchi, Takahiko 1 0 0 0 2 30 7 7 1 0 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0.000

===

...Game 5 starters will be Dicky Gonzalez (YOM) for Shugo Fujii (HAM).

...Masataka Nashida on the victory:

I was on the seat of my pants until the very end.  It was a very exciting game.  We won an away game and now we're guaranteed a trip back to Sapporo.  I want to extend this series as much as possible, even if it's just by one game.  We'll score as many runs as possible for game 5.   I'd like to play our game as we usually do.  I want the team to hold out for the win.

...Tatsunori Hara on the loss:

The line-up had a tough time getting things going with no out...  We got runners on base but couldn't do anything after that.  Helping your teammates out of jams is part of the game, but we couldn't do that tonight.  The players are always focused while they play.  We need to turn the page and start over again tomorrow.

...According to previous Nippon Series games, the Nippon Ham Fighters now have a 60% chance of winning the Series.

Nippon Series: Line-ups for Game 4

by on Nov.04, 2009 @ 5:48 pm, under NPB, Postseason
Tags: ,

Nippon Ham Fighters

Tanaka, Kensuke (2B)
Morimoto, Hichori (CF)
Inaba, Atsunori (RF)
Takahashi, Shinji (1B)
Sledge, Terrmel (LF)
Koyano, Eiichi (3B)
Nioka, Tomohiro (SS)
Tsuruoka, Shinya (C)
Yagi, Tomoya (SP)

Yomiuri Giants

Sakamoto, Hayato (SS)
Matsumoto, Tetsuya (CF)
Ogasawara, Michihiro (3B)
Ramirez, Alex (LF)
Kamei, Yoshiyuki (1B)
Tani, Yoshitomo (RF)
Abe, Shinnosuke (C)
Kimura, Takuya (2B)
Takahashi, Hisanori (SP)

Nippon Series News and Notes: Gonzalez to start game 5?

by on Nov.04, 2009 @ 5:38 pm, under NPB, Postseason
Tags: ,

...TV ratings for Game 3 came in at 17.2% for the Kanto region.

...Dicky Gonzalez will likely start game 5 for the Yomiuri Giants.  Gonzalez tossed about 40 pitches in the bullpen yesterday and ran some dashes during practice today.

...Yu Darvish will continue to use his pitching method of playing catch.

When asked about how he was feeling today, Darvish replied, "I'm still having a hard time using my hips to power my pitches.  But with the way I'm pitching right now, it's like I'm just playing catch."

Nippon Series News and Notes: Game 4 Starters

by on Nov.04, 2009 @ 11:43 am, under NPB, Postseason
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...Game 4 starters will likely be Hisanori Takahashi (YOM) and  Tomoya Yagi (HAM).

...As mentioned yesterday:

George Bush threw out the ceremonial first pitch.

Shinnosuke Abe hit the teams' 200th Nippon Series home run.

The Giants won their 100th Nippon Series game.

Sho Nakata struck out in his first official at bat when he entered the game at a pinch hitter in the top of the 9th.

...When Shinji Takahashi got up to bat in the 8th, he was thinking he would be asked to lay down a bunt with runners on first and second and no out (during the regular season, Takahashi laid down 7 sac bunts, 5 of which were with runners on first and second and no out).  Instead, Takahashi was told to swing away.

The Giants approached Takahashi thinking he could bunt and set the defense accordingly.  But when Takahashi didn't make any moves to bunt during the first two pitches of his at bat, the Giants regrouped and prepared for the double play: the infielders  moved into double play depth and Tetsuya Yamaguchi started attacking the inside portion of the plate to induce a grounder.  The result: a 4-6-3 double play.

What does everyone else think?  Was it right to let Takahashi swing away?  Or would it have made more sense to have him bunt?  Incidentally, the Fighters were down a run at the time.