Tag Archives: Robert Suarez

NPB wrap 7-1-21

Players share their all-star votes

A total of 756 players cast ballots for who THEY think should be in the All-Star games, and while no one was close to a unanimous selection, the player most players believe should be there turned out to be Yuki Yanagita, who was named as on 573 ballots.

Individual players who were not voted in by fans, are added to their leagues’ teams if they lead the player voting. Yanagita was already in, so this was just the cherry on top of the sundae for him.

NPB All-Star Players ballot results

Otherwise, the players added were:

Pacific League

  • P: Yoshinobu Yamamoto, Buffaloes
  • 3B: Nobuhiro Matsuda, Hawks

Central League

  • P: Yuya Yanagi, Dragons
  • 1B: Dayan Viciedo, Dragons
  • 2B: Ryosuke Kikuchi, Carp
  • 3B: Kazuma Okamoto, Giants
  • SS: Hayato Sakamoto, Giants
  • OF: Zelous Wheeler, Giants

I have no idea why the players and fans disagreed so much in the CL and so little in the PL, although the PL’s DH vote was WEIRD. First of all, the winner, Lotte’s Leonys Martin, won an outfield spot on both ballots and won the DH with just 85 votes. His teammate, Brandon Laird, won the fan ballot for DH but didn’t crack the top three in the players’ ballot, as reported by NPB.

Fighters 2, Eagles 1

At Sendai’s Rakuten Seimei Park,Nippon Ham rookie Hiromi Ito (6-4) won a duel with Rakuten veteran Takayuki Kishi (3-6). Both pitched seven innings, both allowed one earned run.

The rain-buffeted game was decided by the right fielders. Rakuten’s Rusney Castillo failed to catch a ball that led to an unearned first-inning run, driven in by Fighters right fielder Kensuke Kondo.

The Eagles had a chance to tie it with two outs, but somehow Kondo, a former catcher, managed to throw out Hiroto Kobukata trying to score on a single from second. The throw was strong enough but offline, forcing Fighters catcher Ryo Ishikawa to make an acrobatic tag.

Lions 1, Hawks 0

At Fukuoka’s PayPay Dome, Seibu’s Cory Spangenberg blasted his fifth home run in the seventh inning off Shota Takeda (4-4), who went seven innings. Lions starter Kona Takahashi (7-3) went eight and Kaima Taira set a record by not being charged with a run over 39 consecutive pitching appearances despite allowing a single and a double. He was helped out of the jam when Hawks pinch-runner Naoki Sato barely over-slid the bag at third, where Spangenberg tagged him out.

After the game, asked about what got him through his jam, Taira said, “I was lucky.”

Giants 10, Carp 4

At Tokyo Dome, Hiroshima chased Giants ace Tomoyuki Sugano in the third inning before Yomiuri roared back to turn this one into a laugher, with Seiya Matsubara reaching base four times, scoring twice and driving in four runs.

Matsubara and Zelous Wheeler each hit their eighth home run, while Hayato Sakamoto hit his 10th for the Giants. The Carp went deep twice, Ryoma Nishikawa hitting his seventh and Seiya Suzuki his 11th.

As for Sugano, Pro Yakyu News analyst Tomoya Satozaki said, “His velocity was down and he couldn’t locate, so there weren’t a lot of positives.”

Giants-Carp highlights

Swallows 6, Tigers 1

At Koshien Stadium, Hanshin closer Robert Suarez (1-1) blew up a 1-1 tie in the ninth when he just didn’t appear to have much feel for the ball. Tetsuto Yamada, who tied it in the seventh with his 21st homer, off Joe Gunkel, singled with one out. With two outs, Jose Osuna singled for the third time, and pinch-hitter Shingo Kawabata walked. After that, Suarez’s pitches got a little straight, and career minor leaguer Takeshi Miyamoto lined a straight 160-kph fastball to left for a two-run single. Kosuke Baba entered but allowed two inherited runs to score plus one he let on himself.

When Suarez took the mound, all I could think of was how lucky I was to watch such a well-pitched game. Gunkel struck out 10, walked none and allowed four hits over seven innings. Yamada’s homer was a fly to right that found the sweet spot at huge Koshien Stadium, where the outfield fence curves in at the foul pole to make an inviting home run target.

Swallows rookie Yasunobu Okugawa struck out six, walked none and allowed four hits over seven innings, including catcher Ryutaro Umeno’s sixth-inning leadoff homer.

Starting pitchers

Pacific League

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

Takeru Sasaki (0-0, 5.87) vs Yoshinobu Yamamoto (7-5, 1.90)

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

Fumiya Motomae (1-1, 5.40) vs Takahiro Norimoto (6-3, 3.01)

Central League

BayStars vs Giants: Jingu Stadium 5:45 pm, 4:45 am EDT

Taiga Kamichatani (0-3, 10.69) vs C. C. Mercedes (3-1, 3.32)

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

Yuya Yanagi (6-3, 2.33) vs Keiji Takahashi (2-0, 2.08)

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

Shogo Tamamura (1-3, 3.82) vs Yuki Nishi (4-4, 2.84)

Active roster moves 7/1/2021

Deactivated players can be re-activated from 7/11

Central League


GiantsP18Tomoyuki Sugano
SwallowsP11Yasunobu Okugawa


SwallowsP38Yugo Umeno

Pacific League


HawksIF55Daiju Nomura
EaglesIF9Brandon Dixon


HawksIF36Taisei Makihara
MarinesP35Shota Suzuki
MarinesP64Yuta Ohmine
MarinesOF31Tsuyoshi Sugano
MarinesOF38Akito Takabe
EaglesIF5Eigoro Mogi
FightersP33Kazuaki Tateno

NPB wrap 6-8-21

Interleague Day 13

The Yomiuri Giants and Hanshin Tigers each managed a ninth-inning run on Tuesday to turn a loss in Osaka into a tie for the Giants and a tie in Sapporo into a win for the Tigers. The PL teams, playing six straight games at home, started with a 3-1-2 day, pulling even in this season’s interleague, 33-33-9 while leading in runs scored 350-307.

Those games were both decided when the home teams opted to play a shallow outfield defense with two outs and a runner on second — as Japanese teams routinely do — and paid the price for their decision: See “Shallow thinking.”

Tigers 3, Fighters 2

At Sapporo Dome, Jerry Sands doubled and pinch-hitter Fumihito Haraguchi drove in the winning run in the top of the ninth off closer Toshihiro Sugiura (0-2) with a two-out fly ball double against the drawn-in outfield as the CL-leading Hanshin Tigers scraped past the PL’s last-place Nippon Ham Fighters.

Fighters starter Naoyuki Uwasawa allowed two runs in the first, one earned, as gave up walked three, struck out six and allowed two hits over seven innings. Nippon Ham tie it in the sixth off Yuki Nishi, who was charged with two runs on seven hits and two walks over 5-2/3 innings.

Shintaro Fujinami worked a scoreless seventh, followed by one zero apiece from Keisuke Baba (2-0) and Robert Suarez, who stayed tied with Rakuten’s Yuki Matsui for the Japan save lead with his 18th.

Eagles 5, Dragons 2

At Sendai’s Rakuten Seimei Park, Rakuten’s Takayuki Kishi (3-4) pitched out of couple of jams before surrendering a fourth-inning leadoff homer to Nobumasa Fukuda, his third. Kishi struck out the next three batters, Hiroaki Shimauchi hit his ninth homer to open the bottom of the inning and Kishi left after six leading Chunichi’s remarkable  Yuya Yanagi (5-2) 3-2.

The Eagles beat Yanagi up for two more runs in the seventh and that was the game. Yuki Matsui finished up with his 18th save. Kishi, who hadn’t won since April 6, struck out eight.

Lions 8, BayStars 3

At MetLife Dome, Cory Spangenberg had three hits and highlighted a six-run fourth inning with his a two-run home run, his seventh, that chased Michael Peoples (2-2), who allowed six runs in three-plus innings.

Wataru Matsumoto (5-3) allowed 11 hits and two walks but still managed to allow just two runs over 5-2/3 innings.

Marines 7, Swallows 4

At Zozo Marine Stadium, Lotte battered rookie Yasunobu Okugawa (2-2) for six runs in five innings, with Brandon Laird doubling in two first-inning runs and hitting a solo homer, his 14th, in the fifth to make it a 6-3 game.

Kota Futaki (3-3) allowed three runs in six innings despite surrendering home runs to Yasutaka Shiomi, his eighth, and Norichika Aoki, his third, to open the game. Naoya Masuda earned his 15th save.

Buffaloes 3, Giants 3

At Osaka’s Kyocera Dome, Seiya Matsubara tripled in the tying run in the ninth inning, when middle-infielder-turned-center-fielder Shuhei Fukuda misjudged a catchable two-out line drive.

Matsubara opened the game with his fifth home run, off Taisuke Yamaoka, and Zelous Wheeler doubled the leadoff man home in the fifth to make it 2-0. Giants starter Nobutaka Imamura worked five scoreless inning before Tatsunori “Three-pitcher minimum” ran through eight relievers.

Orix’s Adam Jones, playing in his first game since May 12, delivered the first of three RBI singles as the Buffaloes came from 2-0 down in the eighth.

Hawks 1, Carp 1

At Fukuoka’s PayPay Dome, SoftBank speedster Ukyo Shuto was caught stealing in the ninth and Yuki Yanagita ended the game trying to stretch a single into a double as the Hawks’ chance of a walk-off win evaporated on the base paths, allowing rookie Carp closer Ryoji Kuribayashi to extend his scoreless game streak to 21.

The Hawks’ Shota Takeda struck out 10, and the Carp’s Daichi Osera struck out six as each allowed one run on a solo homer over seven innings. Kenta Imamiya hit his third in the sixth inning before Tsubasa Aizawa tied it with his second in the seventh.

Starting pitchers


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

Takayuki Kato (3-3, 2.95) vs Takumi Akiyama (5-2, 2.65)

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

Takahiro Norimoto (5-2, 3.02) vs Shinnosuke Ogasawara (3-2, 2.29)

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

Matt Dermody (0-2, 4.21) vs Koo Nakagawa (0-0, 4.42)

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

Daiki Iwashita (4-3, 3.42) vs Kazuto Taguchi (2-4, 3.17)

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

Hiroya Miyagi (5-1, 2.43) vs Angel Sanchez (4-3, 4.59)

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

Nao Higashihama (0-0, 3.09) vs Yusuke Nomura (0-3, 4.55)

Active roster moves 6/8/2021

Deactivated players can be re-activated from 6/18

Central League


GiantsP26Nobutaka Imamura
TigersP42Jon Edwards
TigersP66Ippei Ogawa
TigersOF97Dan Onodera
SwallowsP11Yasunobu Okugawa
SwallowsIF46Kengo Ota


SwallowsP68Kohei Miyadai

Pacific League


HawksOF32Tatsuru Yanagimachi
LionsP12Yutaro Watanabe
EaglesP11Takayuki Kishi
BuffaloesOF10Adam Jones


LionsP64Towa Uema