Tag Archives: Robert Gsellman

NPB news: June 5, 2023

Roki Sasaki pitched well but not well enough to overcome one of Sunday’s pitching Hiros, Hanshin’s Hiroto Saiki, while a pitcher was a batting star and batted in the No. 8 slot, although probably for the wrong reason. It was a good day to be a Hiro, with Saiki, Hiroto Takahashi and Hiroya Miyagi combining for 25 scoreless innings.

I went over to Jingu before the game to talk to Cy Sneed for the podcast and do some other work on another story, and in the process heard a couple of interesting things.

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A new issue for the WBC

At Jingu, I talked with lefty Keiji Takahashi, who hasn’t pitched since May 5, and he said he had little trouble getting over WBC fatigue but has a different kind of issue.

“I think I’m OK now, but I was pretty bad there for a while,” he said. “I hadn’t thrown our (NPB) ball for months, and my finger has been catching on the seams, it messed everything up and I was getting blisters, too.”

Continue reading NPB news: June 5, 2023

NPB news: May 27, 2023

We only had five games on Friday, with the Hawks and Marines taking the day off ahead of their two-game series in Fukuoka, where ostensibly Roki Sasaki will return to the mound on Sunday for the first time since he started a 12-inning 0-0 tie with SoftBank in Chiba on May 5 and developed a blister.

I had the day off from the day job, and went up to Seibu Dome for the first time since the summer of 2019, and would never have been able to get in if another reporter I knew hadn’t showed me how to navigate the hidden media entrance and the labyrinth that followed.

The good news is that the Lions allow reporters on the field unlike most NPB teams.

In the games we did have, Sosuke Genda returned for the Lions and Yutaro “Rao” Sugimoto returned for Orix to start their three-game series, we had one game decided by a botched play, a couple of pitching duels and a slugfest, so let’s get to it.

Friday’s games

Tigers 2, Giants 1: At Koshien Stadium, Yomiuri rookie lefty Kai Yokogawa threw six shutout innings in which he’d allowed three singles and no walks on 80 pitches. He left with a 1-0 lead thanks to Hayato Sakamoto’s third-inning RBI single, but the lead evaporated in the seventh, when Kohei Suzuki hit a batter with one out and surrendered three straight singles to tie it.

Yuhei Takanashi (0-1) surrendered a sac fly to Seiya Kinami that put Hanshin in front and made a winner out of the Tigers’ left-handed rookie starter, Takuma Kirishiki (1-0), who struck out 10 and walked one over seven innings, while allowing five singles.

Japan WBC reliever Atsuki Yuasa returned to the big league mound for the first time since April 13, and stranded two runners in the eighth, and Suguru Iwazaki struck out three of the four he faced in the ninth for his ninth save. The win was the Tigers’ sixth straight.

Tigers-Giants highlights
Continue reading NPB news: May 27, 2023