Tag Archives: Reed Garrett

NPB Wrap 5-14-21

Classic spewage

The Hanshin Tigers have been promoting their games against the Yomiuri Giants this season as “The classic” (“dentetsu no issen” — 伝統の一戦).The Giants broadcast crew jumped on that, repeating the phrase numerous times in each inning. The game was the 1,999th between the historic rivals who were Japan’s dominant pre-war teams, so I get it. But enough is enough.

When rookie Teruaki Sato batted, the announcer said, “He has no home runs yet against the Giants. Against the other four CL teams but not the Giants, not in “the classic.” And it just never stopped. Everything was, “Here’s this big game, the 1,999th Classic.”

If it weren’t for the pandemic keeping Japan’s hospitals from admitting people with just nausea, I suspect there might have been a surge in emergency room visits.

Tigers 2, Giants 1

At Tokyo Dome, the Hanshin Tigers won 2-1 for the second straight night behind right-handed side-armer Koyo Aoyagi (3-2), who faced only one jam in his seven innings. Jefry Marte tied it with his eighth home run, a fourth-inning “Tokyo Dome Special”* off Seishu Hatake (2-2). Teruaki Sato doubled – “In the 1,999th Classic no less!” – and scored after singles by Jerry Sands and Ryutaro Umeno.

Aoyagi followed by retiring 12 of the last 13 batters. Suguru Iwazaki and Robert Suarez each threw a scoreless inning, with Suarez saving his 11th game. Justin Smoak singled twice for the Giants, while Marte doubled with one out in the eighth for the Tigers. He has homered four times in four games at Tokyo Dome this season.

*- “Tokyo Dome Special” – a high fly to the opposite field, typically hit off a high straight fastball, with a mortar-round trajectory that takes advantage of the Dome’s short distances to left and center to land in the first few rows of the outfield seats.

Giants-Tigers highlights

Swallows 4, Dragons 1

At Nagoya‘s Vantelin Dome, new Yakult import Jose Osuna doubled in the second and fourth and scored each time on singles by Domingo Santana. The Swallows lost rookie starter Yuto Kanakubo with one out in the second, when a line drive left a mark on his left pectoral muscle, but six relievers combined to allow one run while stranding 11 Chunichi runners in addition to the two Kanakubo left on.  

The 13 runners left on tied the Dragons high for the season, and that was despite having reserve Swallows catcher Yudai Koga erase two runners on the bases. Mike Gerber went 1-for-5 but scored Chunichi’s only run on a seventh-inning Shuhei Takahashi single.

Dragons starter Akiyoshi Katsuno (3-3) allowed two runs on five hits over four innings, although both of Osuna’s doubles would have been caught by left fielder more experienced than young Akira Neo, who is new to the outfield, and Santana’s second RBI was a jam shot. Stuff happens.

Carp 9, BayStars 2

At Hiroshima’s Mazda Stadium, Fernando Romero‘s second start was torpedoed by a pair of poor second-inning throws that put runners on second and third with no outs. A ground single brought home one run with another out at the plate. A walk and another grounder past first drove in two more. Romero stayed in the game and singled to lead off DeNA’s two-run third, but didn’t make it out of the fourth inning when he allowed two more runs and fell to 0-2.

Hiroshima starter Koya Takahashi (2-1) was nearly perfect, however, from the fourth to the sixth, retiring 12 of the last 13 batters he faced, while the Carp tacked on three more runs against the BayStars bullpen.

The worst thing about this game for the BayStars was not the loss itself, but the fact that Japanese baseball media math forced every news outlet in the country to write about how lousy this team is because it lost its “jiriki-V” mojo.

Japan’s jiriki-V: When Numbers Get Serious

Hawks 5, Fighters 2

At Sapporo Dome, Shuta Ishikawa (2-2) allowed two runs over 6-2/3 innings, three relievers retired the final seven batters, striking out four of them and Seiji Uebayashi homered, singled twice and drove in two runs for the SoftBank Hawks. Ishikawa struck out six, but walked two and hit two in winning for the first time since Opening Day. Livan Moinelo worked the ninth for his fourth save.

Nippon Ham rookie Hiromi Ito (1-3) allowed four runs in 5-1/3 innings on six hits and a walk while striking out six.

Marines 4, Lions 4

At Chiba’s Zozo Marine Stadium, Brandon Laird tied the game with a two-run ninth-inning home run off Seibu’s Reed Garrett, his seventh of the season and his fourth in three games. The Marines loaded the bases with two outs, but Ryosuke Moriwaki retired Leonys Martin to prevent the hosts from coming behind and winning it.

The late meltdown wasted a good juggling act from starter Kona Takahashi, who scattered seven hits, two walks and a hit batsman but allowed just two runs over seven innings. Both runs he gave up came on Hisanori Yasuda’s sixth home run, a two-run shot that gave him a PL-best 32 RBIs for the season. Lotte starter Ayumu Ishikawa had a similar kind of game, but surrendered Takeya Nakamura’s two-run two-out bases-loaded single in the fifth that broke the 2-2 tie.

Garrett opened the Marines ninth by becoming the first Lions pitcher to retire Yasuda all night, striking him out, before Katsuya Kakunaka’s sharp grounder struck the first-base bag for a fluke double. There was nothing fluky about Laird’s homer, however. The sushi man drove a knuckle-curve well back into the left-field stands.

Buffaloes 9, Eagles 4

At Kobe’s Hotto Motto Field, the Orix Buffaloes had a lot of good swings against Rakuten’s Hideaki Wakui (4-2), who gave up five runs, four earned, over three innings in his shortest start since the Eagles purchased him from Lotte after the 2019 season.

Taisuke Yamaoka (2-3) allowed three runs over eight innings. He gave up five hits and a walk while striking out five. Yuma Mune doubled in Orix’s first run, tripled in another in the second and scored twice.

Starting pitchers

Saturday has some interesting pitching matchups other than the weekly appearance from Masahiro Tanaka, starting with the Fighters-Hawks game where Drew VerHagen will go for Nippon Ham against his 2020 teammate, Nick Martinez, who moved to SoftBank over the winter.

In the Central League, Hanshin Tigers rookie Masashi Ito will go against the Giants’ Angel Sanchez in their top-of-the-table clash at Tokyo Dome, while Michael Peoples will make his third start for the DeNA BayStars at Hiroshima against the Carp’s Allen Kuri.

Pacific League

Fighters vs Hawks: Sapporo Dome 2 pm, 1 am EDT

Drew VerHagen (1-2, 3.24) vs Nick Martinez (1-1, 1.38)

Marines vs Lions: Zozo Marine Stadium 2 pm, 1 am EDT

Manabu Mima (2-1, 3.93) vs Wataru Matsumoto (2-3, 3.34)

Buffaloes vs Eagles: Hotto Motto Field 3:30 pm, 2:30 am EDT

Daiki Tajima (2-1, 2.72) vs Masahiro Tanaka (2-2, 3.00)

Central League

Giants vs Tigers: Tokyo Dome 5:45 pm, 4:45 am EDT

Angel Sanchez (2-2, 4.26) vs Masashi Ito (3-0, 1.55)

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

Koji Fukutani (1-3, 4.46) vs Yasuhiro Ogawa (2-1, 5.46)

Carp vs BayStars: Mazda Stadium 2 pm, 1 am EDT

Allen Kuri (4-3, 3.20) vs Michael Peoples (1-1, 2.70)

Active roster moves 5/14/2021

Deactivated players can be re-activated from 5/24

Central League


GiantsP45Seishu Hatake
TigersIF38Ryuhei Obata


TigersIF0Seiya Kinami
CarpP65Shogo Tamamura

Pacific League


HawksP50Yugo Bando
FightersP25Naoki Miyanishi
FightersOF26Daiki Asama
BuffaloesOF8Shunta Goto


FightersIF70Junnosuke Imai
FightersOF4Yuya Taniguchi

NPB wrap 5-4-21

Neo classic

Dragons 8, BayStars 4

At Nagoya’s Vantelin Dome, Chunichi rookie Akira Neo hit his first home run, a third-inning grand slam to help ace Yudai Ono (2-2) overcome a pair of home runs to DeNA’s Neftali Soto, his third—a second-inning three-run shot, and Keita Sano, his fourth – a sixth-inning solo homer.

The Dragons scored four in the first against Shinichi Onuki (1-3), who allowed eight runs on eight hits and three walks over three innings. Ono lasted seven innings, struck out five and walked one while allowing seven hits.

Chunichi cleanup hitter Dayan Viciedo singled twice, walked and scored twice.

Tigers 11, Swallows 5

At Tokyo’s Jingu Stadium, Jefry Marte singled in Koji Chikamoto to open the scoring for Hanshin in the third inning and snapped a 4-4 tie with a seventh-inning solo homer, the first of four for the Tigers against Yakult’s bullpen, which leads both leagues in holds.

Takumu Nakano hit his first and fellow rookie Teruaki Sato his ninth, while Jerry Sands hit his ninth to put the game away.

Neither starting pitcher had a game worth writing home about. Swallows lefty Kazuto Taguchi worked six innings, while Hanshin’s Yuki Nishi worked five. Each allowed four runs, two earned, in an error-plagued game.

Carp 1, Giants 1

At Hiroshima’s Mazda Stadium, Yomiuri starter Yuki Takahashi remained unbeaten in six starts, as the lefty twice pitched out of big jams by retiring Hiroshima’s star hitter Seiya Suzuki. Both Takahashi and Carp lefty Hiroki Tokoda allowed just a run over seven innings.

Suzuki, however, saved the Carp in right field when he robbed Kazuma Okamoto of a two-run double with a leaping catch at the warning track before Tokoda ended his tenure on the bump by striking out Justin Smoak.

Kevin Cron singled and doubled to collect a third of Hiroshima’s hits and scored the hosts’ only run, while Zelous Wheeler singled and scored Yomiuri’s lone run.

Carp closer Ryoji Kuribayashi posted his 14th straight scoreless outing.

Asked on Pro Yakyu News what made Kuribayashi special, former catcher and BayStars skipper Akihiko Oya mentioned not his command, his velocity or that nasty splitter but “He pitches like no one can hit him.”

By that standard, Eddie the Eagle should have been the greatest ski jumper in history.

Hawks 6, Eagles 4

At Fukuoka’s PayPay Dome, Rakuten veteran Takayuki Kishi‘s struggles continued as the right-hander fell to 2-3 after allowing five runs, four earned, over three innings. Hawks reliever Jumpei Takahashi took over in the fifth inning with no outs and a runner on after the Eagles closed to within 6-3. Takahashi allowed the runner to score but stranded two runners and four of his bullpen colleagues slammed the door with lefty Livan Moinelo getting his second save.

Lions 6, Buffaloes 6

At MetLife Dome, Stefen Romero hit his first home run for Orix in two years after spending a productive 2020 with the Rakuten Eagles. His two-run, eighth-inning shot tied the game, and Seibu’s Ryosuke Moriwake got out of a one-out, bases-loaded ninth-inning pickle with a double play.

The Buffaloes’ Masataka Yoshida went 4-for-5 with a double and his seventh home run. His three RBIs helped stake the visitors to a 4-2 fifth-inning lead.

Yoshida also contributed to both teams combining to set a nine-inning record with 16 pitchers after he knocked Seibu’s Reed Garrett out of the game in the ninth with a shot off his left knee.

With closer Tatsushi Masuda deactivated following a string of poor results, Lions manager Hatsuhiko Tsuji had hoped to use Garrett in that role.

“I think it may be hard for Garrett to come back tomorrow,” Tsuji said according to Sanspo.com.

Cory Spangenberg walked to leadoff the Lions’ second and scored on an Aito Takeda single. He walked to load the bases in the fourth ahead of Wu Nien-ting’s RBI single and Takeda’s two-run double.

The Lions put runners on the corners in the ninth against former Tiger ace Atsushi Nomi, but the 40-year-old hung on to end the game thanks to a super defensive stop by substitute Koji Oshiro at second that secured a tie with the third out.

More Fighters felled by virus

The Pacific League’s Nippon Ham Fighters, currently on hiatus due to the coronavirus, announced three new infections on Tuesday, bringing the total of infected first-team players and staff to 13, Nikkan Sports reported.

In addition to the staff, coaches and players who have tested positive, five players have been determined to have had close contact with them. The Fighters have not played since Saturday. Their next scheduled game is scheduled for Friday at Sapporo Dome, but it will not take place unless Nippon Ham can field a virus-free team.

Starting pitchers

Pacific League

Lions vs Buffaloes: MetLife Dome 1 pm, 12 midnight EDT

Tatsuya Imai (1-2, 2.40) vs Yoshinobu Yamamoto (3-2, 1.39)

Hawks vs Eagles: PayPay Dome 1 pm, 12 midnight EDT

Tsuyoshi Wada (2-2, 3.34) vs Takahiro Norimoto (2-1, 2.14)

Central League

Swallows vs Tigers: Jingu Stadium 2 pm, 1 am EDT

Yasunobu Okugawa (1-1, 7.20) vs Koyo Aoyagi (2-2, 2.25)

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

Akiyoshi Katsuno (3-1, 3.12) vs Haruhiro Hamaguchi (1-3, 4.22)

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

Koya Takahashi (1-0, 1.74) vs Angel Sanchez (1-2, 5.89)

Active roster moves 5/4/2021

Deactivated players can be re-activated from 5/14

Central League


GiantsP21Shoichi Ino
GiantsP50Chiaki Tone
CarpOF49Yuya Shozui


GiantsP45Seishu Hatake
GiantsP49Thyago Vieira
CarpC27Tsubasa Aizawa

Pacific League


LionsP29Ryuya Ogawa
EaglesC55Takaya Tanaka
BuffaloesP22Ryota Muranishi


HawksP13Akira Niho
LionsP14Tatsushi Masuda
EaglesP57Ryota Takinaka
FightersC68Ryo Ishikawa
FightersIF23Ryo Watanabe
BuffaloesP68Yu Suzuki