Tag Archives: Masataka Yoshida

NPB wrap 6-23-21

Orix streak reaches 11

The Buffaloes became the first team owned by Orix to win 11 consecutive decisions on Wednesday, when their winning streak became the franchise’s longest since 1984, when the franchise, then known as the Hankyu Braves, were on their way to the PL pennant led by triple crown-winner Boomer Wells.

NPB ‘time off’ means ‘work’

Nippon Professional Baseball, which has no official games between July 14, the start of the all-star series break, and Aug. 12 after the end of the Tokyo Olympics, announced Wednesday that its teams have scheduled 58 exhibitions with fans in the stands during that time.

Buffaloes sign Sparkman

The Pacific League’s Orix Buffaloes announced the signing of 29-year-old right-hander Glenn Sparkman on Wednesday. Sparkman was 4-14 with a 5.99 ERA in 52 major league games, of which he started 26 with 23 of those coming for the Kansas City Royals in 2019.

Buffaloes 3, Fighters 1

At Osaka‘s Kyocera Dome, rookie Kotaro Kurebayashi broke up a scoreless tie by leading off the third inning with Orix’s first hit, his fifth homer of the year, off Takahide Ikeda (3-7), who surrendered Masataka Yoshida’s 13th with two outs in the inning. Yutaro Sugimoto hit his 15th in the sixth inning to make it a 2-1 game.

Lefty Daiki Tajima (4-4) allowed a run over 5-2/3 innings while striking out eight, walking one and giving up six hits. Yang Chi, Tyler Higgins, and Yoshihisa Hirano finished up with one scoreless inning apiece with Hirano earning his ninth save.

Eagles 6, Lions 4

At MetLife Dome, Masahiro Tanaka (3-4) allowed four runs over six innings and earned his first win since May 1 after the Rakuten Eagles came from behind with two runs in the seventh against Lions rookie Yutaro Watanabe (0-1).

Tomohito Sakai, Sung Chia-hao and Yuki Matsui finished up for the Eagles with Matsui notching his 19th save. Tanaka struck out seven, walked one, hit one, and gave up eight hits. Takero Okajima brought the Eagles from behind in the seventh with a two-run triple.

Marines 1, Hawks 1

At Chiba’s Zozo Marine Stadium, Nobuhiro Matsuda tied it up with his eighth home run in the third. Lotte’s Frank Herrmann struck out the side in the seventh, and SoftBank loaded the bases with one out in the eighth against Chihaya Sasaki,, but the right-hander Olympians Yuki Yanagita and Ryoya Kurihara to escape the jam.

Lotte rookie Shota Suzuki went six innings, while SoftBank’s Nao Higashihama worked six-plus.

Dragons 6, Tigers 2

At Nagoya’s Vantelin Dome, Hanshin’s Teruaki Sato scored twice, tying the game 2-2 in the sixth with his 19th home run, which tied a record if you believe the nonsense Japan’s media pumps out. Unfortunately, Shintaro Fujinami (3-2) surrendered four runs in the seventh as Chunichi blew the game out of the water.

Fujinami walked Dayan Viciedo with the bases loaded before surrendering a three-run double to Naomichi Donoue. Chunichi’s Opening Day starter Koji Fukutani (4-6) was the fortunate winner after allowing two runs on twelve hits over seven innings. Hanshin’s Raul Alcantara gave up two runs, one earned, over six innings. He struck out six while walking one.

Giants 4, BayStars 2

At Toyama Alpen Stadium, Yomiuri’s Yoshihiro Maru hit a pair of home runs, his seventh and eighth, and drove in three runs for the second straight day to make a winner out of Shun Yamaguchi (1-0), who allowed a run in 5-2/3 innings in his first game back in Japan.

BayStars ace Shota Imanaga (1-2) gave up four runs over six innings. Kevin Shackelford and Edwin Escobar each gave DeNA a scoreless inning of relief. Thyago Vieira recorded his fourth save for the Giants.

Giants-BayStars highlights

Swallows 8, Carp 5

At Hiroshima’s Mazda Stadium, Jose Osuna’s fifth home run, a three-run third-inning shot did most of the damage against Hiroshima’s Allen Kuri (5-5), who allowed seven runs, five earned, over four innings. Norichika Aoki reached base four times, scored twice and drove in a run for the Swallows.

Shogo Sakakura was the big hitter for the Carp, reaching base three times, scoring a run and driving in two. Yakult starter Cy Sneed (2-1) got whacked for five runs, four earned, in 3-2/3 innings. Scott McGough worked a 1-2-3 ninth to earn his 14th save.

The Swallows lost Munetaka Murakami after he fouled a pitch off his right knee in the fourth inning. Manager Shingo Takatsu said Murakami wouldn’t be deactivated.

The Carp were without Seiya Suzuki, who suffered from side effects after being vaccinated for his role on Japan’s Olympic team.

Starting pitchers

Pacific League

Marines vs Hawks: Zozo Marine Stadium 5:45 pm, 4:45 am EDT

Roki Sasaki (1-0, 3.38) vs Shota Takeda (3-3, 2.43)

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

Hirotoshi Masui (2-4, 3.94) vs Hiromi Ito (4-4, 2.77)

Central League

Dragons vs Tigers: Vantelin Dome (Nagoya) 5:45 pm, 4:45 am EDT

Yuichiro Okano (0-1, 9.00) vs Joe Gunkel (5-0, 2.44)

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

Koya Takahashi (2-2, 5.02) vs Keiji Takahashi (1-0, 2.84)

Active roster moves 6/23/2021

Deactivated players can be re-activated from 7/3

Central League


GiantsP99Shun Yamaguchi
TigersP44Raul Alcantara
BayStarsC10Yasutaka Tobashira
CarpOF59Minoru Omori
SwallowsP54Cy Sneed


BayStarsP48Masaya Kyoyama
BayStarsP93Koo Nakagawa
CarpOF1Seiya Suzuki

Pacific League


MarinesP35Shota Suzuki
MarinesC22Tatsuhiro Tamura
FightersP52Takahide Ikeda
BuffaloesP29Daiki Tajima
BuffaloesP98Chang Yi


MarinesC32Toshiya Sato
BuffaloesP19Taisuke Yamaoka
BuffaloesP49Keisuke Sawada

NPB Wrap 6-9-21

May pitchers, hitters of the month

NPB announced its monthly awards for May on Wednesday. The Central League’s honors went to Hanshin Tigers closer Robert Suarez and rookie slugger Teruaki Sato. The Pacific League’s went to right-hander Nick Martinez of the SoftBank Hawks and Orix Buffaloes outfielder Masataka Yoshida.

No one asked me, but in case anyone does, I wrote in “3 hits and a near miss” that one of the honors, although well-intentioned was misguided

Interleague Day 14 — the CL strikes back

A day after seeing the PL catch up in the interleague race the CL reclaimed the lead with three wins, a tie and two losses. The CL now leads 36-35 with 10 ties, while trailing in runs scored 378-342.

But if the CL was striking back they were striking out, at least in Osaka, where 19-year-old Orix Buffaloes lefty Hiroya Miyagi continued to show poise and command beyond his years, exploiting a large strike zone to give the Yomiuri Giants fits for seven innings while striking out 13.

Buffaloes 3, Giants 1

At Osaka‘s Kyocera Dome, Orix’s Hiroya Miyagi (6-1) had superb control to go with his superb stuff and poise and with the help of a generous strike zone, 19-year-old virtuoso played the Yomiuri lineup like a Stradivarius. He changed speeds, hit his spots and was in complete command from the jump. He walked one and allowed one hit over seven innings, a two-out seventh-inning homer to Kazuma Okamoto, his 16th.

Yomiuri’s Angel Sanchez (4-4) was aggressive and steady, and though he allowed three runs on nine hits and three walks over 6-2/3 innings, he never looked threatened as he coolly made big pitches to keep it close.

Yuma Mune opened the scoring in the first with his fifth home run. Yutaro Sugimoto doubled with two outs and scored on a fourth-inning ground single. Sanchez was yanked in the seventh to bring in lefty Yuhei Takanashi against Steven Moya. Orix responded with Adam Jones, who lashed a pinch-hit RBI single.

Tyler Higgins stranded two runners in a scoreless eighth before Yoshihisa Hirano bulled his way through a 1-2-3 ninth for his fourth save since coming back from the majors.

Tigers 10, Fighters 3

At Sapporo Dome, Nippon Ham’s Takayuki Kato (3-4) retired nine of the first 10 batters he faced but Hanshin tied it 1-1 on a throwing error in the second inning before the Fighters defense fell apart and he ended up allowing seven runs, six earned, in 4-1/3 innings.

Hanshin’s Takumi Akiyama (6-2) allowed three runs over 5-2/3 innings. Jerry Sands had three hits, including two doubles and drove in four runs. The Fighters had chances to get back in the game, but left the bases loaded in the third and fourth innings.

Dragons 7, Eagles 3

At Sendai’sRakuten Seimei Park, it was Shuhei Takahashi day as the Chunichi captain had four hits including two home runs, his third and fourth, and drove in four runs. Dayan Viciedo chipped in with two RBI singles. Lefty Shinnosuke Ogasawara (4-2) held the PL leaders to two runs, one earned, over six innings despite walking five and giving up five hits. Both runs scored after some poor defense from him and the normally outstanding Viciedo at first.

Rakuten’s Takahiro Norimoto (5-3) worked six innings, giving up four runs on nine hits and a walk.

Lions 8, BayStars 8

At MetLife Dome, Toshiro Miyazaki reached base four times and drove in four runs for the BayStars, while Tyler Austin homered, walked twice, drove in two runs and scored two, but hurt his leg running the bases and left the game and did not bat in the sixth inning.

Seibu’s Matt Dermody allowed six runs in three-plus innings, while DeNA’s Koo Nakagawa gave up four runs in four innings. The Lions overcame a six-run deficit with the bottom half of the lineup doing the heavy lifting. Wu Nien-ting, Cory Spangenberg, Aito Takeda and Haruka Yamada combined for six runs and seven RBIs. DeNA shut down the rest of the Lions’ attack – except for a seventh-inning Tomoya Mori walk and Ernesto Mejia’s two-out double off Venezuelan compatriot Edwin Escobar, setting up Wu to single in the tying run.

Lions rookie Yutaro Watanabe held the BayStars scoreless for three innings in his pro debut before Reed Garrett worked a scoreless eighth and Kaima Taira extended his scoreless game streak to 30. DeNA’s Yasuaki Yamasaki bounced back from a bad outing on Sunday to work a 1-2-3 eighth and closer Kazuki Mishima did the same in the ninth – with the help of a diving catch from Masayuki Kuwahara to end the game.

Swallows 5, Marines 3

At Chiba’s Zozo Marine Stadium, Yakult’s Kazuto Taguchi (3-4) allowed three runs over 6-2/3 innings, Jose Osuna and Domingo Santana each singled in a first-inning run, and Tetsuto Yamada scored twice and hit a solo home run, his 14th. The game got dicey in the ninth, when current Swallows closer Scott McGough allowed Lotte to load the bases with one out before striking out Shogo Nakamura and Katsuya Kakunaka to end it and earn his eighth save.

Lotte’s Daiki Iwashita (4-3) allowed four runs over 5-2/3 innings to take the loss.

Hawks 8, Carp 4

At Fukuoka’s PayPay Dome, SoftBank’s Akira Nakamura singled in two runs with two outs in the fifth to snap a 3-3 tie. Two walks and a two-run single by Nobuhiro Matsuda iced the game. Matsuda tied Michiyo Arito’s PL record for games at third base with his 1,774th.

All eight Hawks runs were charged to Carp starter Yusuke Nomura (0-4).

Starting pitchers


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

Robbie Erlin (1-1, 4.40) vs Raul Alcantara (1-1, 5.79)

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

Ryota Takinaka (4-2, 4.08) vs Akiyoshi Katsuno (3-3, 3.54)

Lions vs BayStars: MetLife Dome 5:45 pm, 4:45 am EDT

Tetsuya Utsumi (0-0, 13.50) vs Yuya Sakamoto (1-1, 3.32)

Marines vs Swallows: Zozo Marine Stadium 5:45 pm, 4:45 am EDT

Roki Sasaki (1-0, 4.50) vs Cy Sneed (1-1, 5.65)

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

Sachiya Yamasaki (1-5, 4.17) vs Yuki Takahashi (6-1, 2.26)

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

Colin Rea (0-0, 4.50) vs Shogo Tamamura (0-3, 5.40)

Active roster moves 6/9/2021

Deactivated players can be re-activated from 6/19

Central League


SwallowsP24Tomoya Hoshi


GiantsP26Nobutaka Imamura
SwallowsP11Yasunobu Okugawa

Pacific League


LionsP26Takeru Sasaki
EaglesIF33Ginji Akaminai
FightersOF66Chusei Mannami
BuffaloesIF64Shinya Hirosawa


MarinesP18Kota Futaki
EaglesP11Takayuki Kishi
FightersP47Kenya Suzuki
FightersIF6Sho Nakata
FightersOF50Ryota Isobata
BuffaloesP19Taisuke Yamaoka