Tag Archives: Alan Busenitz


Thursday’s announced starting pitchers in NPB

Suzuki has career night against Lions

For most of the first five years of his pro baseball career, Yu Suzuki has been a reliever. But going 6-3 as a starter in the Western League last season with a 2.81 ERA must have caught someone’s attention.

On Wednesday, the 23-year-old right-hander who was Orix’s ninth draft pick in 2014, was handed the ball for his first top-team start and threw five hitless innings, nearly doubling his career output with the Pacific League club. The result was his first career win as Orix snapped a seven-game losing streak in a 6-0 win over the Seibu Lions.

For five innings, he and Lions starter Tatsuya Imai (0-2) traded hitless innings, until in the sixth, the jig was up for the Seibu starter. After issuing a leadoff walk, Imai left a slider up a little too much to diminutive power hitter Masataka Yoshida, and the left-handed-hitter launched it over MetLife Dome’s right field fence.

An Adam Jones double and an Aderlin Rodriguez RBI single made it 3-0, when Seibu self-destructed. An error and three-straight bases-loaded walks completed the six-run sixth inning.

Four Orix relievers came in, and the Lions, who haven’t been no-hit in 20 years, didn’t get a hit until veteran slugger Takeya Nakamura’s hard grounder found a hole to lead off the eighth off new import Tyler Higgins.

Asamura punishes Marines some more

Hideto Asamura homered for the second-straight night in Sendai, while Hideaki Wakui (2-0) allowed two runs over five innings as the Rakuten Eagles beat the Lotte Marines 5-3 to pull into a tie for first place in the Pacific League.

Pitching against the club that sold him over the winter, Wakui sturck out seven, while allowing five hits and a walk.

Leonys Martin homered for the Marines, while JT Chargois and Alan Busenitz each worked an inning of relief for the Eagles. Busenitz allowed a run on three hits.

Ishikawa strikes out 10 in Sapporo

Shuta Ishikawa (1-0) of the SoftBank Hawks struck out 10, while walking one and allowing five hits in a 4-0 win over the Nippon Ham Fighters at Sapporo Dome.

Nick Martinez (0-2) started for the Fighters. He gave up three runs, two earned, on six hits and two walks while striking out five.

Austin, Patton turn on power against Giants

Tyler Austin’s three-run eighth-inning double off the wall at Tokyo Dome helped lift the DeNA BayStars to a 5-3 win over the Yomiuri Giants.

Reliever Spencer Patton (2-0), who entered in the seventh to face Giants captain Hayato Sakamoto and struck him out, got the win in relief. He provided an encore in the eighth by striking out the side, starting with cleanup hitter Kazuma Okamoto and finishing with Gerardo Parra.

Giants starter Cristopher Mercedes allowed a run over 5-2/3 innings but it could have been worse without a good catch from newly acquired utility man Zelous Wheeler, who denied the BayStars a leadoff single in the sixth with a sliding catch in left.

Escobar treats Swallows to ice cream cone

Naomichi Nishiura hit his second game-changing home run of the week with a fourth-inning two-run shot that put the Yakult Swallows in front in a 4-3 win over the Hiroshima Carp at at Tokyo’s Jingu Stadium.

On Thursday, Nishiura hit a pinch-hit, three-run sayonara shot off Tigers closer Kyuji Fujikawa. On Wednesday, he went deep off Sawamura Award-winning lefty Kris Johnson (0-2).

Right-hander Albert Suarez (2-0) started for Yakult and allowed three runs, one earned, over five innings, while Scott McGough worked a scoreless eighth. The Carp mounted a rally against closer Taishi Ikeyama, and the lead looked blown on a two-out liner, only for new Swallow Alcides Escobar to save the game.

Yamamoto stops Tigers

Twenty-year-old Takumi Yamamoto (1-1) allowed two runs over five innings, while Zoilo Almonte doubled, walked and scored twice, and Dayan Viciedo singled in a couple of runs as the Chunichi Dragons beat the Hanshin Tigers 6-3.

Jerry Sands singled in a run for the Tigers, while Justin Bour hit his first home run in Japan, a ninth-inning consolation shot.

Dragons add catcher Martinez to roster

The Chunichi Dragons inked 24-year-old Cuban catcher Ariel Martinez to a standard contract on Wednesday. Martinez, signed to a non-roster developmental contract in 2018, hurt his right knee playing in Cuba’s Series Nacional prior to camp the Chunichi Sports reported.

He rejoined the Dragons for practice games from June 2 after completing his rehab.

Marines’ Futaki, Buffaloes’ Nakagawa dropped

Because Japanese baseball has no options and players can be activated or dropped from the active roster an unlimited number of times. So it’s common for a player, ostensibly on the active roster because the manager believes in him, to get sent down for a couple of bad plays.

Two heads rolled on Wednesday after poor performances the night before. The Lotte Marines deactivated right-handed starting pitcher Kota Futaki after the Rakuten Eagles teed off on too many first-pitches in Lotte’s 15-4 loss. The defeat snapped the Marines’ eight-game winning streak.

The Orix Buffaloes pulled the plug on 24-year-old utility infielder Keita Nakagawa, who finished fourth in the rookie of the year voting last year, for not hitting and for making a throwing error that led to the Seibu Lions’ third run in a 3-2 loss. The Buffaloes have lost seven straight.

NPB games and news, Sept. 11, 2019

Pacific League

Lions 4, Hawks 1

At MetLife Dome, Seibu seized first place with a win over SoftBank, Zach Neal (10-1) allowed a run over seven innings, to win his fifth straight start.

He didn’t walk a batter for the second-straight game and didn’t allow a base runner until Alfredo Despaigne homered to lead off the Hawks’ fifth.

Here is Neal’s hero interview along with closer Tatsushi Masuda.

Tomoya Mori hit a two-out, three-run double in the third off Rei Takahashi (11-4) in an otherwise solid start. Masuda worked a 1-2-3 ninth to record his 100th career save.

The Lions who won the PL last season are in first place for the first time this season.

Game highlights are HERE.

Marines 6, Buffaloes 4

At Zozo Marine Stadium, Leonys Martin hit his third two-run homer in a week in Lotte’s four-run second and hit a solo homer, his 14th in 42 NPB games in the third as Lotte handed Orix its ninth-straight loss.

Game highlights are HERE.

Eagles 3, Fighters 1

At Tokyo Dome, Rakuten’s Jabari Blash hit his 32nd home run, and Ginji Akaminai broke a 1-1 ninth-inning tie with a two-run, bases-loaded single off Nippon Ham closer Ryo Akiyoshi (0-5).

Alan Busenitz (4-2), announced as the PL’s pitcher of the month for August earlier in the day, walked two batters and hit another in the eighth, but pitched out of it to earn the win in relief. Yuki Matsui recorded his 35th save.

Game highlights are HERE.

Central League

BayStars 10, Giants 4

At Yokohama Stadium, DeNA’s Neftali Soto homered three times, once to each field, to retake the lead in the CL home run race with his 39th as he bids for his second-straight league home run title.

The video is HERE.

Dragons 3, Carp 2, 10th inning

At Mazda Stadium, Chunichi’s Yota Kyoda led off the 10th inning with his third home run, off Kyle Regnault (6-3) in a come-from-behind win over Hiroshima.

Tigers 6, Swallows 3

At Koshien Stadium, Jefry Marte hit a two-run home run as Hanshin hammered Yakult’s Yasuhiro Ogawa (4-12) for six runs over five innings.

Here’s the video of Marte’s home run.

Yakult’s Munetaka Murakami improved his record for home runs by a teenager with his 33rd.