Tag Archives: Chen Wei-yin

NPB wrap 4-29-21

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Emergency exits

Although Thursday was a national holiday and the start of the Golden Week holidays, two teams opted to postpone their games due to the latest state of emergency in Tokyo and three western prefectures, including Osaka. Rather than play in an empty park on a holiday afternoon, the Yakult Swallows postponed their Central League game with the Yomiuri Giants while the Pacific League’s Orix Buffaloes also put off their home game against the Rakuten Eagles.

Chen links

Tigers 6, Dragons 4

At Nagoya‘s Vantelin Dome Chen Wei-Yin (1-0) returned to Nagoya with a flourish, winning his first game in Japan since 2011 and his first as a Hanshin Tigers against his old club, allowing a run over six innings, striking out four, walking none while allowing five hits and getting a pair of double plays. Cleanup hitter Yusuke Oyama drove in four runs to help the Central League leaders snap a seven-game losing streak at Nagoya Dome.

“I wasn’t that good at the start of the game, and I was able to get a lot of support from my teammates,” Chen said in Mandarin through a Japanese language interpreter. “In particular (Jefry) Marte and Oyama put runs on the board that allowed me the breathing room to settle in.”

“I never think much about whether the team is in a losing streak or on a winning streak,” said Chen, whose win snapped a three-game skid. “Thanks to Ryu (catcher Ryutaro Umeno) calling such a steady game, I could just focus on executing my pitches, so I’m grateful to him.”

Marte sparked the Tigers offense with a two-out first-inning triple, a drive to the center field wall that Yohei Oshima nearly caught. Oyama then singled past short off Koji Fukutani (1-2) to open the scoring. The Tigers made it 4-0 in the third. Kento Itohara doubled with one out, Marte walked, and Oyama hit his fifth home run.

Fukutani allowed four runs over six innings on six hits and a walk.

Being Japan, we couldn’t be spared the number 3,497 — the number of days since Chen’s last win in Japan.

BayStars 5, Carp 3,

At Hiroshima’s Mazda Stadium, Tyler Austin and Neftali Soto showed Japan what it’s been missing early in the season as the pair untied a 1-1 game with one home run each in a three-run third.

Austin went deep for the second straight day with a leadoff homer, and Toshiro Miyazaki’s two-out walk set the table for Soto’s two-run shot off Carp rookie Shogo Tamamura (0-1) in his pro debut baptism of fire. The lefty had been 2-0 in the Western League with some solid numbers, striking out 17 in 17 innings with just three walks, 13 hits and no home runs.

Haruhiro Hamaguchi (1-3) DeNA’s Opening Day starter, allowed three runs on seven hits and no walks over six-plus innings to post his fourth quality start. The lefty got the hook after allowing two runs on three straight no-out hits in the seventh. Edwin Escobar stranded a runner in the inning. Former closer Yasuaki Yamasaki and his successor, Kazuki Mishima kept the Carp of the board in the eighth and ninth with Mishima earning his third save.

Marines 5, Lions 2

At MetLife Dome, Lotte’s Daiki Iwashita (3-2) allowed two runs over six innings while striking out seven, and Leonys Martin got the Marines rolling with a two-run first-inning homer, his Japan-best 10th, off Sho Ito (0-1).

The Marines bullpen resumed normal uninterrupted service with a hat-trick of one-strikeout perfect innings by Frank Herrmann, Yuki Karakawa and closer Naoya Masuda, who earned his fifth save. Marines leadoff man Takashi Ogino walked, singled and scored twice.

The Lions were poised to pull even in the home half of the first with one run in, one out and the bases loaded. Wu Nien-ting chopped a fat pitch up the middle, but Yudai Fujioka dove to keep the ball in the infield and flip to second for a force as a run scored.

Iwashita responded by retiring 16 of the next 18 batters he faced before making way for the bullpen, which retired nine straight.

The Lions’ bright spot was 5-2/3 innings of one-run relief from troubled starter Wataru Matsumoto, who struck out five and walked none.

Hawks 2, Fighters 1

At Fukuoka’s PayPay Dome, SoftBank’s Shota Takeda (2-1) won a pitchers’ duel against surprising Nippon Ham journeyman Takahide Ikeda (2-3), with seven scoreless innings.

Ikeda, acquired in the March deal that sent slugging reserve infielder Taketoshi Yokoo to the Eagles, held the Hawks to two runs over seven runs in his fourth straight quality start. Akira Nakamura opened the scoring with his second homer in the sixth, and Yusuke Masago hit his first of the season in the seventh.

Livan Moinelo worked the eighth for SoftBank, and Yuito Mori worked around the third homer of the season by No. 2 hitter – Pro Yakyu News guys eat your hearts out – Sho Nakata to earn his eighth save.

Wang Po-jung went 2-for-2 with a walk in his season debut for Nippon Ham, but squandered his third-inning leadoff double trying for third in an inning in which the Fighters still stranded a runner.

Starting pitchers

Pacific League

Fighters vs Lions: Sapporo Dome 6 pm, 5 am EDT

Drew VerHagen (0-1, 4.26) vs Kona Takahashi (3-0, 3.06)

Eagles vs Marines: Rakuten Seimei Park Miyagi 6 pm, 5 am EDT

Hideaki Wakui (3-0, 1.47) vs Toshiya Nakamura (0-0, 1.80)

Buffaloes vs Hawks: Kyocera Dome (Osaka) 6 pm, 5 am EDT

Taisuke Yamaoka (1-2, 2.32) vs Shuta Ishikawa (1-2, 3.15)

Central League

Giants vs Dragons: Tokyo Dome 6 pm, 5 am EDT

Tomoyuki Sugano (2-1, 1.74) vs Yuya Yanagi (1-1, 1.97)

BayStars vs Swallows: Yokohama Stadium 5:45 pm, 4:45 am EDT

Yuya Sakamoto (1-1, 3.27) vs Yuto Kanakubo (1-0, 2.93)

Tigers vs Carp: Koshien Stadium 6 pm, 5 am EDT

Takumi Akiyama (2-2, 3.91) vs Allen Kuri (3-2, 2.65)

Active roster moves 4/29/2021

Deactivated players can be re-activated from 5/9

Central League

Activated

TigersP14Chen Wei-Yin
CarpP65Shogo Tamamura
CarpC62Tomoki Ishihara

Dectivated

TigersP42Jon Edwards
CarpP58Reira Fujii
CarpC40Yoshitaka Isomura

Pacific League

Activated

HawksP18Shota Takeda

Dectivated

EaglesP45Yuki Watanabe
FightersP57Toshihiro Sugiura

Sunday wrap

The DeNA BayStars were shut out for the second straight day in preseason action by the Orix Buffaloes on Sunday, and new DeNA skipper Daisuke Miura expressed concern about his offense with his two biggest home run hitters, Tyler Austin and Neftali Soto, kept out of Japan by travel restrictions, Sankei Sports reported.

“Of course I’m worried,” Miura said. “We have to make the most of the few chances we get, and hang in at-bats to run up their pitch counts.”

The Yakult Swallows were also shut out for a second straight day in Hiroshima as last year’s Central League rookie of the year, Masato Morishita struck out three over four perfect innings and Kevin Cron hit his first preseason home run for the Carp.

In Fukuoka, SoftBank Hawks veteran Tsuyoshi Wada struck out six over five innings to pick up the win against fellow former Oriole lefty Chen Wei-yin, who allowed four runs over three innings for the Hanshin Tigers. Wada allowed five hits, one a first-inning solo homer to Jefry Marte.

The Tigers went with four imports on the mound as Joe Gunkel worked three scoreless innings in relief of Chen, while Jon Edwards and Robert Suarez finished up with one inning apiece.

Clearing the decks

Hawks release, Moore, van den Hurk, Uchikawa, Colas on cut day

The Pacific League’s SoftBank Hawks parted company, at least technically with pitchers Matt Moore and Rick van den Hurk, while making longtime captain Seiichi Uchikawa free to complete a deal with the Central League’s Yakult Swallows on Wednesday.

Nippon Professsional Baseball’s teams are required to submit their reserve lists for the 2021 season on Dec. 2, the big day for releases across Japan. The moves don’t necessarily mean that neither Moore nor van den Hurk will be back with the four-time defending Japan Series champions, but it does mean they were unable to or unwilling to exercise an option to keep them.

Cuban two-way player Oscar Colas, who has been on the restricted list since Feb. 19, was released by not being placed on the Hawks’ 2021 reserve list, meaning he will be free to sign with an MLB club as an international amateur when the next international signing period opens in June.

Cuts throw import market wide open

The winter NPB market for import players heated up considerably with Tuesday’s cuts when a number of experienced players with established value were left off their clubs’ reserves list. Here’s a brief rundown:

Lotte Marines
Seibu Lions
Rakuten Eagles
Nippon Ham Fighters
Orix Buffaloes

Yomiuri Giants
Hanshin Tigers
Chunichi Dragons
DeNA Baystars
Hiroshima Carp
Yakult Swallows

NPB 2020 Nov. 15

Sunday’s games

Central League

  • Season complete

PL Climax Series Game 2

Nakamura ambushes Marines

For the second straight day, the Lotte Marines took the lead at Fukuoka’s PayPay Dome and couldn’t hold it as Akira Nakamura homered twice in a 6-4 win to clinch the Pacific League forplay series in two games.

It was a little out of character for the Hawks’ veteran, who never chases and instead waits for fat pitches in the zone to drive for base hits. He appeared to be waiting for something low from Chen in both the second and fourth innings after Alfredo Despaigne singled.

Nakamura’s second homer made it 4-3 but Chen then threw a high straight fastball to Nobuhiro Matsuda who put on his Cookie Monster costume and ate all of it.

Marines rookie Hisanori Yasuda had another super day. After homering in Game 1, he put a beautiful swing on a good pitch in the first inning to double in two runs. He also made a couple of solid plays at third, and doubled and scored in the seventh.

Livan Moinelo pitched the Hawks out of trouble in the seventh and retired the Marines in the eighth and was awarded with the win, while Yuito Mori loaded the bases in the ninth before nailing down his second save.

The Hawks extended their record postseason win streak to 12 games, starting after they lost Game 1 of the 2019 Climax Series first stage.

Time for a rematch

The Japan Series, starting on Saturday at Osaka’s Kyocera Dome will be the 13th between the Hawks and Giants, the most between any two teams, and their second in two seasons.

The Giants have currently tied the franchise’s worst streak of not winning a Japan Series for seven consecutive seasons, set between 1974 and 1980.

NPB 2020 Nov. 4

Through their first 16 games, the Lotte Marines have been the SoftBank Hawks’ worst nightmare, but all that appears to be changing.

Wednesday’s games

Other news

Senga goes to top of class

Kodai Senga (11-6) got a late start to the season but qualified for the Pacific League’s ERA title with eight innings in the SoftBank Hawks’ 2-0 win on Wednesday at Chiba’s Zozo Marine Stadium, over the Lotte Marines, who fell into third place, a game behind the Seibu Lions for the final playoff spot.

The Hawks’ win left them tied in their season series against Lotte after the three-time defending Japan Series champs starting the season 4-11-1 against the Marines.

With nine strikeouts over eight innings, Senga now leads the league with a 2.16 ERA and is tied with Orix’s Yoshinobu Yamamoto for the strikeout lead with 149 and tied with Hideaki Wakui for the lead in wins.

The Hawks scored on solo homers by Alfredo Despaigne, his sixth, and Ryoya Kurihara, his 17th, off former major leaguer Chen Wei-yin (0-3), and have now beaten the Marines in seven straight games. Yuito Mori notched his 32nd save.

Spangenberg, Lions feast on rookie Yoshida

Corey Spangenberg homered for the second straight night and drove in four runs as the Seibu Lions tattooed rookie Kosei Yoshida (0-2) for eight runs over two innings in a 10-3 win over the Nippon Ham Fighters at MetLife Dome.

Zach Neal (6-8) allowed three runs over five innings to pick up the win. Shuta Tonosaki homered, drove in two runs and scored three, and Reed Garrett worked a scorless inning of relief for the Lions.

Buffaloes bounce Eagles

The Orix Buffaloes broke an eighth-inning tie with two runs off Alan Busenitz (1-4) in an 8-7 win at Osaka’s Kyocera Dome over the Rakuten Eagles, who fell 3-1/2 games out of the final playoff spot with four games left to play.

Orix lit up Hideaki Wakui for six runs over five innings before the visitors came back to tie it.

Endo goes distance for Carp

Atsushi Endo (5-6) threw a four-hitter for the Hiroshima Carp in a 5-1 win over the Yomiuri Giants at Hiroshima’s Mazda Stadium.

Hisayoshi Chono went 2-for-3 with two walks a homer three RBIs and his first stolen base since he was with the Giants two years ago, while Jose Pirela had three hits for the Carp.

Giants captain Hayato Sakamoto went 0-for-4 to remain three hits shy of 2,000 in his career.

Fujinami goes 6 scoreless innings in Tigers’ win

Shintaro Fujinami overcame three two-out walks to go six scoreless innings in the Hanshin Tigers’ 3-2 walkoff win over the Yakult Swallows at Koshien Stadium.

Yusuke Oyama homered in the ninth off Yugo Umeno (4-2) to end it and make a winner out of closer Robert Suarez (3-1) after the Swallows tied it with single runs in the seventh, off Suguru Iwazaki, and in the eighth, off Jon Edwards.

Takahashi lifts Dragons over ‘Stars

Dragons captain Shuhei Takahashi scored twice and hit a tie-breaking eighth-inning home run in a 5-4 win at Nagoya Dome after the DeNA BayStars tied it on home runs by Neftali Soto and Jose Lopez.

Soto’s 25th made it a 4-1 game in the fifth and Lopez’s 12th, with two on, tied it in the sixth.

Kodai Senga fastest NPB starter to 1,000 Ks

SoftBank Hawks right-hander Kodai Senga, whose family name literally means “1,000 celebrations,” notched his 1,000th strikeout in his 855-1/3 inning on Wednesday night at Chiba’s Zozo Marine Stadium.

Only Kyuji Fujikawa, the longtime former closer of the Central League’s Hanshin Tigers, who will retire this year, reached 1,000 in fewer innings. Fujikawa notched 92 of his strikeouts in 102 career innings as a starter, but he was primarily used as a reliever whose 243 saves are fourth-most in NPB history.

Senga, however, took over the Pacific League record from Hall of Famer Hideo Nomo. Senga started his career as a reliever and has pitched 82 career innings out of the bullpen. Signed after being taken in the developmental draft, Senga notched his first strikeout on April 30, 2012, fanning Lotte catcher Tomoya Satozaki, who was working the game as an analyst on TV Tokyo.

NameTeamInnings
Kyuji FujikawaHanshin Tigers771-2/3
Kodai SengaSoftBank Hawks855-1/3
Hideo NomoKintetsu Buffaloes913

Active roster moves 11/4/2020

Deactivated players can be re-activated from 11/14

Central League

Activated

GiantsP95Hayato Horioka

Dectivated

GiantsP49Thyago Vieira

Pacific League

Activated

HawksOF54Alfredo Despaigne
FightersC68Ryo Ishikawa
BuffaloesP21Daichi Takeyasu

Dectivated

HawksP44Rick van den Hurk
HawksOF4Wladimir Balentien
HawksOF60Go Kamamoto
FightersP35Takahiro Nishimura

Starting pitchers for Nov. 5, 2020

Pacific League

Marines vs Hawks: Zozo Marine Stadium 6 pm, 5 am EDT

Manabu Mima (9-4, 4.21) vs Nao Higashihama (9-1, 2.02)

Buffaloes vs Eagles: Kyocera Dome 6 pm, 5 am EDT

Daiki Tajima (4-6, 4.21) vs Wataru Karashima (1-3, 5.46)

Central League

Dragons vs BayStars: Nagoya Dome 6 pm, 5 am EDT

Yudai Ono (10-6, 1.91) vs Kentaro Taira (4-5, 2.30)

Tigers vs Swallows: Koshien Stadium 6 pm, 5 am EDT

Yuki Nishi (11-5, 2.03) vs Yuto Kanakubo (0-0, 0.00)

Carp vs Giants: Mazda Stadium 6 pm, 5 am EDT

Kazuki Yabuta (1-2, 4.75) vs Angel Sanchez (8-4, 3.05)

NPB 2020 Oct. 14

Wednesday’s games

Other news

Ono hangs on for 5th shutout

Yudai Ono (9-5) returned to his complete-game victory fixation on Wednesday with his fifth shutout of the season as the lefty pitched out of a ninth-inning jam in the Chunichi Dragons’ 3-0 win over the Hanshin Tigers at Nagoya Dome.

The win lifted the Dragons into second place in the Central League at two games above .500 despite being outscored this season 396 to 356. Second place is largely symbolic as the Yomiuri Giants run away with the pennant and no possibility of advancing to the Japan Series since the CL has canceled its playoffs this year.

Ono struck out seven and walked one. He allowed two-out singles to Yusuke Oyama and Justin Bour in the ninth.

Tigers submarine right-hander Koyo Aoyagi (6-8) allowed three runs over seven innings to take the loss. Dayan Viciedo singled and scored in the second for the Dragons, and Zoilo Almonte singled in a run in the third.

Ono has now worked 36 consecutive scoreless innings. The Japan record is 64-1/3 by Hall of Famer Masaichi Kaneda, who accomplished the feat in 1958 with the Kokutetsu Swallows.

The lefty’s nine complete games are the most in Japan since Tomoyuki Sugano had 10 in 2018, when he won his second consecutive Sawamura Award, although eight of those were shutouts, which may be hard for Ono to match in this shortened season.

Masahiro Tanaka was the last pitcher in Japan with more than 10 complete games, when he had 14 in 2011.

Yudai Ono seals his shutout with a nice play from the mound.

Giants trim magic number to 9

Yuki Takahashi (1-0) allowed a run over five innings and tripled in the tie-breaking run in the second as the Yomiuri Giants beat the Hiroshima Carp 6-1 at Tokyo Dome.

Although the outfield was playing the pitcher shallow, Takahashi got some distance on his drive to the gap.

The win, combined with the Tigers’ loss, dropped the Giants’ magic number to clinch the pennant to nine.

Giants-Carp highlights

BayStars bash Swallows

The DeNA BayStars bashed out nine runs over the first six innings and then had to call on closer Kazuki Mishima after Naomichi Nishiura’s second homer of the game made it close in the eighth inning of their 9-6 win over the Yakult Swallows at Tokyo’s Jingu Stadium.

BayStars starter Yuya Sakamoto (4-1) held the Swallows to a run over five innings, while 40-year-old lefty Masanori Ishikawa (1-7) allowed five runs over five. Mishima earned his 14th save.

Tyler Austin had three hits and two RBIs for the visitors, while Neftali Soto scored twice. Toshiro Miyazaki drove in three runs on three singles and Keita Sano homered for the third straight game.

Wakui outpitches Chen

Chen Wei-yin’s return to Japanese pro ball was impressive until a belt-high center-cut fastball to Hideto Asamura put the Rakuten Eagles in front in their 4-1 win over Chen’s new team, the Lotte Marines at Chiba’s Zozo Marine Stadium.

Hideaki Wakui (11-3) appeared to lose his footing on the mound on his first pitch, a 143-kph fastball down the middle to rookie Kyota Fujiwara who looked like he was geared up for a first-pitch fastball because he really hammered it for his first career home run.

Asamura singled and scored the tying run in the fourth on a Stefen Romero sacrifice fly and blasted his 31st home run in the sixth, driving it well back in the left-field stands for a 2-1 lead.

Chen allowed two runs over six innings, while Wakui went seven. Lefty Yuki Matsui worked a scoreless eighth and Alan Busenitz did the same in the ninth for his 18th save.

Senga strikes out 10

SoftBank Hawks ace Kodai Senga (8-6) struck out 10 over six innings to earn the win in a 4-0 victory over the Orix Buffaloes at Osaka’s Kyocera Dome that was scoreless through six innings.

Lefty Sachiya Yamasaki (4-5) surrendered a leadoff double to Ryoya Kurihara in the seventh. He scored on a wild pitch, and three two-out walks loaded the bases for Yuki Yanagita, who delivered a three-run double.

It was the Buffaloes’ second straight shutout loss. The win lifted SoftBank three games clear of the second-place Marines.

VerHagen shuts down Lions

Drew VerHagen (7-5) struck out 10 over eight scoreless innings as the Nippon Ham Fighters took advantage of nine walks in a 7-2 win over the Seibu Lions at Sapporo Dome.

VerHagen allowed three hits and walked two to earn his first winsince he last threw eight shutout innings to beat the Rakuten Eagles on Sept. 14.

Taishi Ota hit a two-run first-inning home run off rookie Shota Hamaya (2-2).

Active roster moves 10/14/2020

Deactivated players can be re-activated from 10/24

Central League

Activated

TigersIF33Kento Itohara
TigersOF32Kota Inoue

Dectivated

TigersP29Haruto Takahashi
TigersIF2Fumiya Hojo
TigersOF9Shun Takayama

Pacific League

Activated

MarinesP58Chen Wei-yin
BuffaloesP11Sachiya Yamasaki
BuffaloesIF0Shoki Katsumata

Dectivated

MarinesP41Kakeru Narita
BuffaloesOF99Yutaro Sugimoto

Starting pitchers for Oct. 15, 2020

Pacific League

Fighters vs Lions: Sapporo Dome 6 pm, 5 am EDT

Nick Martinez (1-6, 4.58) vs Zach Neal (4-6, 4.78)

Marines vs Eagles: Zozo Marine Stadium 6 pm, 5 am EDT

Kazuya Ojima (7-6, 3.28) vs Takayuki Kishi (3-0, 4.72)

Buffaloes vs Hawks: Kyocera Dome 6 pm, 5 am EDT

Daiki Tajima (4-4, 3.67) vs Shuta Ishikawa (7-3, 2.58)

Central League

Giants vs Carp: Tokyo Dome 6 pm, 5 am EDT

Angel Sanchez (7-3, 2.92) vs Yusuke Nomura (6-3, 4.59)

Swallows vs BayStars: Jingu Stadium 6 pm, 5 am EDT

Daiki Yoshida (1-6, 5.01) vs Kentaro Taira (3-3, 2.57)

Dragons vs Tigers: Nagoya Dome 6 pm, 5 am EDT

Takahiro Matsuba (3-6, 3.92) vs Minoru Iwata (1-1, 4.41)