Tag Archives: J. B. Wendelken

Back to baseball: Sept. 17, 2023

Because Teruyo and I were in Hawaii for a few days’ vacation enjoying the beautiful sunsets and sunrises, it’s been a while since the last blog post. Sorry for that.

A few hours after we arrived, Yoshinobu Yamamoto threw his second no-hitter in two seasons. On the day we returned, the Hanshin Tigers clinched the pennant. I thought Jet lag and fatigue have since run their course for the most part, and after a busy night at the office Saturday, I was ready to get down to the real work, talking about baseball, but really struggled to get this out Sunday night, needing a nap half-way through after I got home and a shower.

With one pennant race decided and the other virtually in the bank, all the focus now is on whether the two fourth-place teams, the Central League’s Yomiuri Giants and the Pacific League’s Rakuten Eagles can squeeze into the postseason.

Sunday offered no change to the playoff picture in either league as the three rivals for the two remaining PL playoff spots, the Eagles, Lotte Marines and SoftBank Hawks all lost, while the three CL contenders, the Hiroshima Carp, the DeNA BayStars and Yomiuri Giants, all won. Roki Sasaki pitched, but his outing was nothing to salivate over. Since Japan is celebrating its Respect for the Aged Day on Monday, Tsuyoshi Wada squared off against a pitcher half his age.

Sunday’s games

Giants 3, Swallows 2: At Tokyo Ugly Dome, Japan’s best home run-hitting team came from behind via the long ball on sixth-inning home runs from Yoshihiro Maru, his 17th, and Kazuma Okamoto, his Japan-leading 41st, off side-armer Reiji Kozawa, who’d allowed an infield single and two walks to that point.

Yakult took a 1-0 fourth-inning lead on Domingo Santana‘s 16th homer. Santana’s ninth-inning leadoff double off Taisei Ota (3-0) set up the tying run before Yuki Okada singled to open the Giants ninth off Noboru Shimizu (1-8), and scored after Makoto Kadowaki fouled off five two-strike pitches with two outs before lining a pitch past second.

Continue reading Back to baseball: Sept. 17, 2023

NPB news: May 21, 2023

Yomiuri’s Foster Griffin had his obligatory good outing against Chunichi, two second-chancers had big games for their clubs, while another guy who badly needed a second chance but finally got playing time with the team that drafted him in 2013 also delivered. The red-and-black attack keeps rolling, a former closer threw a complete game, and a rookie named Morishita got the better of a former rookie of the year named Morishita.

Minor moves

On Friday, the SoftBank Hawks called up a minor league pitcher, which is not really news worthy, other than that the team ordered him pulled off the mound in his Western League game so he could report to the major league club.

Meanwhile, DeNA announced it was letting the team’s recent graduate of MLB’s domestic violence, sexual assault and child abuse suspension program to pitch in the Eastern League Sunday against Lotte as a tune-up for his next start. He was not deactivated.

Saturday’s games

Giants 6, Dragons 2: At Tokyo Dome, Foster Griffin (4-1) held Chunichi to two runs over six innings to improve to 3-0 against the Dragons, who coughed up the game’s first run on one-out singles by Takumi Oshiro and Yuto Akihiro and an error by shortstop Ryuku Tsuchida.

Naoki Yoshikawa doubled off Shinnosuke Ogasawara (3-2) and scored on a Kazumasa Okamoto third-inning single, while Yoshikawa and Okamoto reached in the fourth and Takumi Oshiro followed with his sixth homer, and his first career grand slam.

Second-chancer Seiya Hosokawa had two doubles for the Dragons and scored on Takaya Ishikawa’s fourth home run, while the Giants bullpen didn’t make the game interesting for a change.

Continue reading NPB news: May 21, 2023