Tag Archives: Hotaka Yamakawa

NPB wrap 6-5-21

Interleague Day 12 — long and short

It was come-from-behind victory day for the PL with all five of the PL wins coming that way, with two contrasting knockout-blow four-run innings.

The Seibu Lions launched three home runs in the ninth inning to knock off the Yakult Swallows, while the Rakuten Eagles started big but ended small, a tie-breaking solo homer followed by two singles, and three-straight sacrifice bunts including a bases-loaded suicide squeeze and a safety squeeze, that with the help of a throwing error, produced three more runs.

The five PL wins left the CL leading the interleague standings 30-26-7 after 63 games, with the PL outscoring the CL 293-263. The interleague leader heading into the final week or so of games is the Chunichi Dragons, who have definitely come a long way in that respect since the club treated interleague so dismissively in 2005.

Fighters 6, Giants 4

At Tokyo Dome, Wang Po-Jung brought Nippon Ham from a run down with a two-run, seventh-inning home run, his fourth, and Yuto Takahama capped the rally with a grand slam off Giants starter Shosei Togo (5-3). Wang’s home run snapped a 29-inning scoreless skid for the Fighters.

It also gave him a chance to do the hero interview, in which he thanked Japan for donating 1.24 million doses of vaccines to his homeland, Taiwan.

Fighters starter Kazuaki Tateno, their second draft pick from 2019, allowed just a run over five innings in his first-team debut. Ryusei Kawano (1-1), their first-round singing in 2019, earned the win for the first of three scoreless innings of relief from the Fighters’ bullpen, before closer Toshihiro Sugiura made it uncomfortably close in the ninth, surrendering pinch-hit solo home runs to Yoshiyuki Kamei and Seiya Matsubara.

Kamei’s home run was the 100th of his career, and they didn’t all come as a pinch-hitter although it kind of feels that way.

Giants-Fighters highlights

Lions 6, Swallows 3

At Tokyo’s Jingu Stadium, Seibu treated Yakult to the kind of power display the Lions used to win back-to-back pennants in 2018 and 2019, Hotaka Yamakawa homered twice, his seventh cutting the Swallows’ lead to 3-2 in the seventh inning, and his eighth, a two-run shot that gave the Lions the lead against Scott McGough.

Takeya Nakamura opened the Lions’ ninth with his fifth, Takumi Kuiryama singled, and then Yamakawa and Wu Nien-ting, who hit his fifth, completed the four-run feast.

The Lions scored in the first off  Yasuhiro Ogawa (5-1, 3.52) on two singles and a Kuriyama sac fly, but Munetaka Murakami singled in two runs with no outs and the bases loaded off Tatsuya Imai, and tacked on a run by tying Leonys Martin for the Japan lead with his 17th home run to open the sixth.

BayStars 11, Marines 9

At Yokohama Stadium, Marines right-hander Manabu Mima (3-3) provided the candle power on a cloudy day when the DeNA BayStars lit him up for 11 runs over five innings.

Neftali Soto’s 10th homer gave the BayStars a 2-1 lead in the second. Katsuya Kakunaka tied it with an RBI single in the third off Haruhiro Hamaguchi (3-4), who allowed two over five innings.

The BayStars’ Masayuki Kuwahara, doubled and scored in the first, and doubled and scored the go-ahead run in the third. With the game in danger of getting away in the fourth, Lotte walked Kuwahara with two outs and first base open, which lit the fuse on a five-run bomb of an inning. Hikaru Ito doubled in two, Keita Sano, who doubled in a run in the first, singled in another. Tyler Austin then capped the rally with a two-run homer, his 10th of the season.

Dragons 6, Buffaloes 3

At Nagoya’ Vantelin Dome, Dayan Viciedo homered twice, capping a three-run first with his eighth home run, a two-run shot off Daiki Tajima (2-4), and driving in an insurance run in the eighth by leading off the eighth with his second. Shuhei Takahashi followed with his second homer as Chunichi went deep three times for the second game in the series. The Dragons used eight pitchers after Kodai Umetsu was pulled in the third. Things nearly went south in the top of the eighth, when the first two batters singled off lefty Hiroto Fuku and one scored to make it a 4-3 game.

Hawks 10, Tigers 2

At Koshien Stadium, SoftBank’s Nick Martinez (5-1) allowed two runs, on Jefry Marte’s 10th home run in the third as he scattered nine hits and a walk over six innings. The Hawks came from behind on three sixth-inning hits against Hanshin rookie Masashi Ito (3-3). Yuki Yanagita singled and scored on a Yusuke Masago double before Takuya Kai belted his sixth home run. Kai added a solo homer in the ninth.

Eagles 7, Carp 3

At Hiroshima’s Mazda Stadium, the Eagles broke the game open in a four-run eighth, starting with Hiroaki Shimauchi’s eighth home run, against lefty Atsuya Horie. After two singles, bunting madness took over. Rakuten loaded the bases on a sacrifice bunt and an error. Catcher Hikaru Ota’s suicide squeeze made it 5-3. Itsuki Murabayashi’s safety squeeze made it 6-3, with a second run scoring on a throwing error on the play.

Hiroshima’s Masato Morishita, the CL’s 2020 rookie of the year, battled to a six-inning stalemate with Rakuten’s Masahiro Tanaka, both pitchers allowing three runs. Morishita took a 3-1 lead into the seventh, when he issued back-to-back walks to runners who would eventually score.

Two of the runs scored off Tanaka came off high straight fastballs against Carp rookies 20-year-old Kota Hayashi and 24-year-old Koki Ugusa.

Starting pitchers

Sunday gives us a couple of fun matchups, Giants ace Tomoyuki Sugano against impressive Fighters rookie southpaw Hiromi Ito. At Koshien Stadium, Joe Gunkel returns to the mound for the first time since he went three innings against DeNA on May 9. He’ll face southpaw Tsuyoshi Wada, who has been struggling.


Giants vs Fighters: Tokyo Dome 2 pm, 1 am EDT

Tomoyuki Sugano (2-2, 1.93) vs Hiromi Ito (2-4, 3.33)

Swallows vs Lions: Jingu Stadium 1 pm, 12 midnight EDT

Hirotoshi Takanashi (2-1, 3.12) vs Towa Uema (1-1, 5.40)

BayStars vs Marines: Yokohama Stadium 2 pm, 1 am EDT

Shota Imanaga (0-1, 6.10) vs Kazuya Ojima (2-2, 4.37)

Dragons vs Buffaloes: Vantelin Dome (Nagoya) 2 pm, 1 am EDT

Koji Fukutani (3-4, 3.66) vs Hirotoshi Masui (1-4, 4.75)

Tigers vs Hawks: Koshien Stadium 2 pm, 1 am EDT

Joe Gunkel (5-0, 2.35) vs Tsuyoshi Wada (3-3, 4.62)

Carp vs Eagles: Mazda Stadium 1:30 pm, 0:30 am EDT

Koya Takahashi (2-1, 2.01) vs Takahisa Hayakawa (6-2, 3.14)

Active roster moves 6/5/2021

Deactivated players can be re-activated from 6/15

Central League


GiantsOF39Soichiro Tateoka
CarpP18Masato Morishita
CarpP43Sotaro Shimauchi


GiantsOF8Yoshihiro Maru
CarpP21Shota Nakazaki
CarpP67Yuta Nakamura

Pacific League


MarinesP41Kakeru Narita
FightersP33Kazuaki Tateno
BuffaloesC33Masato Matsui


MarinesP35Shota Suzuki
FightersC22Shinya Tsuruoka
BuffaloesC44Yuma Tongu

NPB 2020 Oct. 8

Thursday’s games

Other news

Hawks bullpen salvages draw

A trio of SoftBank Hawks relievers pitched out of late-inning jams to preserve a 4-4 10-inning tie after the Seibu Lions’ Hotaka Yamakawa leveled the scores with a three-run seventh-inning home run at MetLife Dome.

Shuta Ishikawa worked seven innings and allowed seven hits and three walks. The Hawks battered Lions starter Tatsuya Imai for four runs on eight hits and a walk over three innings, but six Lions relievers allowed just four base runners the rest of the way.

Ernesto Mejia doubled to open Seibu’s second inning and scored the tying run on a Takumi Kuriyama single.

Ishikawa nearly got out of the seventh unscathed after a Tomoya Mori leadoff single. He struck out Mejia and survived a blast from Kuriyama that fell short of the warning track. But Corey Spangenberg singled and Ishikawa hung a curve to Yamakawa that he hit well back among the fans in left field.

Livan Moinelo worked around a leadoff single in the eighth. Closer Yuito Mori came on in the ninth and surrendered a leadoff double to Kuriyama. A sacrifice put the go-ahead run on third and the Hawks loaded the bases intentionally. Mori fell behind Fumikazu Kimura 2-0 but struck him out before ending the inning on a fly to right.

Lions closer Tatsushi Masuda worked a scoreless ninth and Reed Garrett pitched the 10th to snuff out the Hawks’ chance of victory.

Submarine right-hander Rei Takahashi walked the first two hitters in the 10th but struck out Mejia for the first out before preventing the Lions from walking off.

Kishi pitches Eagles to victory

Takayuki Kishi (3-0) worked into the seventh inning for the first time this season and Hideto Asamura had a two-run single in the Rakuten Eagles’ 4-1 win over the Nippon Ham Fighters at Sapporo Dome.

Kishi allowed four hits and two walks while striking out seven. Yuki Matsui struck out three of the four batters he faced in relief in 1-1/3 perfect innings before handing it over to Alan Busenitz, who did the same in the ninth for his 17th save.

Nick Martinez (1-6) got out of a first-inning jam but had less luck in the fourth when the Eagles scored on three straight hits to set up a four-run inning. Martinez, who allowed six hits and four walks, walked Daichi Suzuki with the bases loaded before Asamura capped the rally with a two-run single.

Giants survive late onslaught

Angel Sanchez (7-3) allowed two runs over seven innings for the Yomiuri Giants, who survived a late challenge to hold off the DeNa BayStars 9-7 at Tokyo Dome.

Kazuma Okamoto and Yoshihiro Maru each hit two-run home runs as the Giants built a 9-1 lead by the fourth inning. Okamoto’s was his league-leading 25th, while Maru’s was his 21st.

BayStars right-hander Shoichi Ino (6-6) allowed four runs over two innings to take the loss, although his teammates nearly took him off the hook in a five-run eighth inning.

Tyler Austin and Jose Lopez each hit two-run homers. Austin’s was his 15th in just his 43rd game, while Lopez’s was his third two-run shot of his old team in the series. Daisuke Nakai, another former Giant, capped the rally with an RBI single.

Spencer Patton worked the eighth to keep it close but Giants closer Rubby De La Rosa ended the game with the tying runs on to secure his 16th save.

Gerardo Parra returned to duty for the first time since July 22, but went 0-for-5 with three strikeouts for the Giants.

Giants-BayStars highlights

Tigers’ Nishi strikes out 12

Yuki Nishi (9-4) struck out 12 over eight innings for the Hanshin Tigers in a 9-1 win over the Hiroshima Carp at Hiroshima’s Mazda Stadium.

Nishi allowed a run on four hits and a walk, while his teammates took batting practice against finesse right-hander Yusuke Nomura (6-3).

Nomura allowed eight runs over five-plus innings. Fumiya Hojo put the visitors up for good with a two-run first-inning homer, while Jerry Sands and Justin Bour homered back-to-back to open the Tigers’ six-run sixth.

Active roster moves 10/8/2020

Deactivated players can be re-activated from 10/18

Central League


GiantsOF88Gerardo Parra
TigersP20Kenichi Nakata
TigersP92Kazuo Ito


GiantsP28Kazuto Taguchi
BayStarsP19Yasuaki Yamasaki
TigersP48Yukiya Saito
TigersP93Masaki Ishii
DragonsOF31Masaru Watanabe
SwallowsC63Suguru Ino

Pacific League


FightersP27Nick Martinez


BuffaloesP27Andrew Albers
BuffaloesIF64Shinya Hirosawa
BuffaloesOF00Hayato Nishiura

Starting pitchers for Oct. 7, 2020

Pacific League

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

Toshihiro Sugiura (6-3, 2.80) vs Daiki Tajima (3-4, 3.72)

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

Takahiro Shiomi (4-6, 4.35) vs Zach Neal (3-6, 4.89)

Hawks vs Marines: PayPay Dome 6 pm, 5 am EDT

Matt Moore (4-2, 3.04) vs Kota Futaki (5-2, 3.55)

Central League

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

Joe Gunkel (1-3, 3.62) vs Haruhiro Hamaguchi (6-5, 4.56)

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

Hiroki Tokoda (3-6, 5.66) vs Hiroaki Saiuchi (1-1, 4.40)