Tag Archives: Munetaka Murakami

NPB news: Oct. 22, 2022

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Thanks to the guys at Pro Yakyu News, we know this was the ninth straight Japan Series game played between Yakult and Orix that was decided by two runs or less, with Swallows manager Shingo Takatsu earning the win in 1995 Game 3, when Yakult scored three in the 10th to beat Ichiro Suzuki’s BlueWave on a three-run walk-off homer.

Bigger than that was the news that Yoshinobu Yamamoto left the game due to discomfort in his left oblique muscles, and his availability for further use is up in the air. The game played out to form with the big power-hitting team winning the outdoor game with offense suppressed by the cold weather as the team that relies the most on a long-sequence offense stranding 12 runners.

Game 1

Swallows 5, Buffaloes 3: At Jingu Stadium, Yakult opened the scoring on a fluke two-run first-inning double. A Yasutaka Shiomi leadoff single, a stolen base and a four-pitch walk to triple crown winner Munetaka Murakami set the table for Jose Osuna, whose sharp grounder hit the outside of the third base bag and rolled into the corner.

Continue reading NPB news: Oct. 22, 2022

Oh, Matsui and Murakami

There was an interesting post on Twitter Saturday, which just begged for verification. It questioned whether Munetaka Murakami should be considered Japan’s best young home run hitter ever, since the conditions in which the Swallows star has hit his home runs are quite different from those faced by Sadaharu Oh and Hideki Matsui.

Conditions are always in flux, offhand I would agree with this post about Oh, the early part of Matsui’s career was a fairly normal era for home run production. The perception that Matsui hit in a “mini dead-ball era” is created by the switch to Mizuno’s rabbit ball by the Giants, Dragons and BayStars toward the end of his time in Japan.

The same thing probably led Robert Whiting to recently declare Wladimir Balentien’s 60 home runs to have taken place with a lively ball in place. The ball wasn’t particularly lively that year, but it was normal compared to the soft ball used the previous two seasons.

Continue reading Oh, Matsui and Murakami