Tag Archives: Takahisa Hayakawa

NPB wrap 5-2-21

More Fighters games postponed

NPB announced Sunday that in addition to that day’s canceled game at Sapporo Dome against the Seibu Lions, the virus-hit Nippon Ham Fighters, with 10 first-team infections, have ceased baseball activities until cleared fit by local health authorities.

Their Pacific League series against the Lotte Marines in Chiba from Monday to Wednesday have been postponed with further postponements likely.

Sato cleans up

Tigers 7, Carp 3

At Koshien Stadium, Hanshin rookie Teruaki Sato batted fourth, which was salivation material to begin with before he hit a game-changing grand slam. His homer turned a mediocre start from Joe Gunkel (5-0) into a winning effort. Gunkel started the season with four wipe-out starts, but has been more ordinary since, allowing three runs over five innings on Saturday.

Hiroshima’s Yusuke Nomura (0-3) allowed five runs in four-plus innings, leaving after Sato took him deep in the fifth.

Hanshin leadoff man Koji Chikamoto and No. 3 hitter Jefry Marte each reached base five times. Chikamoto stole two bases and scored three runs, while Marte scored one and drove in one.

BayStars 10, Swallows 2

At Yokohama Stadium, DeNA’s Tyler Austin homered off the scoreboard, singled twice walked and scored three runs to help power the BayStars. The home run was his fourth and his third in four days. Neftali Soto doubled in a run in DeNA’s six-run seventh.

Southpaw Edwin Escobar (1-0) struck out two in a 1-2-3 sixth to earn the win and Kevin Shackelford worked a perfect eighth for the BayStars, while Hirotoshi Takanashi (2-1) allowed four runs, one earned, over five-plus innings and took the loss.

Eagles 6, Marines 5

At Sendai’s Rakuten Seimei Park, the marquee pitching matchup between first-year left-handers was interrupted by rain and turned into a slug fest, that was decided when leadoff man Takashi Ogino slammed a fastball off closer Yuki Matsui (0-1) to break a ninth-inning tie.

Rakuten’s Ryosuke Tatsumi dealt the first big blow, capping a three-run fourth off Shota Suzuki with his sixth home run. Eagles starter Takahisa Hayakawa threw a high straight fastball to Brandon Laird, whose third homer of the year, a three-run shot in the sixth made it a 5-4 game. The Eagles tied it against Frank Herrmann in the seventh with the help of an error.

The game was notable for balls getting stuck in odd places. The Marines opened the scoring after a drive from Hisanori Yasuda got stuck between the padding atop the left field wall and the screen atop it. Another stuck ball, in Rakuten catcher Hikaru Ota’s mask in the ninth, allowed a runner on base to advance.

Buffaloes 5, Hawks 4

At Osaka’s Kyocera Dome, Orix outslugged SoftBank thanks to two-run homers by Steven Moya, his third, and Yuma Mune, his second, and a solo shot by Torai Fushimi, his first. Sachiya Yamasaki (1-3) allowed two runs in six-plus innings.

Yurisbel Gracial hit his fifth homer of the year for the Hawks, a two-run shot in the eighth, that made it a one-run game.

Pacific League

Starting pitchers

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

Matt Dermody (-) vs Hiroya Miyagi (2-0, 1.26)

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

Akira Niho (-) vs Ryota Takinaka (1-2, 7.90)

Central League

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

Kodai Umetsu (-) vs Michael Peoples (-)

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

Masato Morishita (3-2, 1.80) vs Seishu Hatake (2-1, 4.95)

Active roster moves 5/2/2021

Deactivated players can be re-activated from 5/12. Players marked with an asterisk are coronavirus activations and deactivations, meaning they can be recalled as soon as they are cleared even before 10 days pass.

Central League




SwallowsP14Hirotoshi Takanashi

Pacific League


BuffaloesP58Kazuyuki Kaneda
BuffaloesOF69Stefen Romero


LionsP40Ichiro Tamura
LionsP45Keisuke Honda
FightersC60Takuya Kori
FightersIF53Ronny Rodriguez*
FightersIF91Yuto Takahama*
BuffaloesP63Soichiro Yamazaki
BuffaloesIF36Tatsuya Yamaashi

NPB wrap 4-11-21

Hawks get past rookie Hayakawa

Hawks 2, Eagles 0

At Sendai’s Rakuten Seimei Park Miyagi, five SoftBank Hawks pitchers combined on a four-hitter as the defending Pacific League champs beat the PL leading Rakuten Eagles and rookie Takahisa Hayakawa (1-2) to move within a game of first place.

Hayakawa allowed a run on six hits and a walk over 5-2/3 innings. The lefty struck out seven. Reliever Tomohiro Anraku, the Eagles’ top pick in 2014, inherited two runners in the sixth but got out of the inning by striking out Akira Nakamura on a beauty of a splitter to leave the bases jammed.

The Hawks scored off Hayakawa in the fifth on a Yuki Yanagita single and a one-out Alfredo Despaigne double. With one out, runners on second and third, and the infield in, Nakamura lined into an inning-ending double play.

The Eagles drew two walks against Livan Moinelo in the eighth, which counts for something but didn’t matter on the scoreboard. Despaigne singled in the ninth, Nakamura doubled in pinch-runner Taisei Makihara, and closer Yuito Mori worked a 1-2-3 ninth to notch his third save.

Lions 2, Marines 1

At Chiba’s Zozo Marine Stadium, Katsunori Hirai (3-0) pitched seven impressive innings, striking out eight while allowing a run on five hits and a walk for the Seibu Lions, who edged the Lotte Marines’ top draft last autumn, Shota Suzuki (0-1).

Lions shortstop Sosuke Genda tied it 1-1 in the fourth by singling, stealing two bases and scoring on a sac fly. The Marines contributed to another wild ride around the bases as Ryusei Sato singled with one out, went to third on a two-base wild pitch, and scored on a sac fly.

Suzuki left after five innings, having struck out seven, walked two and surrendered three singles. Frank Herrmann worked the seventh for Lotte, while rookie right-hander Tokito Kawamura loaded the bases only to strike out Sato and end the Lions’ eighth.

Kaima Taira, the PL’s 2020 rookie of the year, did the same in the bottom of the eighth, loading the bases before striking out Tsuyoshi Sugano, who looked at a little 3-2 slider on the bottom of the zone from the flame-throwing right-hander.

Fighters 4, Buffaloes 4

At Osaka’s Kyocera Dome, the Orix Buffaloes came back to tie it in the ninth inning on Yuma Mune’s two-run, two-out triple tied it to end what through seven innings had been a pretty good pitchers’ duel between Nippon Ham Fighters lefty Takayuki Kato and rookie Hiroya Miyagi.

The rookie extricated himself from a fourth-inning pickle to take a 1-0 lead into the seventh. After two walks, he was handed an out on a failed sacrifice. Miyagi got a comebacker that had no chance to be a double play, but shortstop Ryoichi Adachi’s throw to first was wide and he apologized to the rookie.

Miyagi then gave up a line RBI single that tied it on a good first-pitch changeup. Nothing bad about that inning but the two walks, but Miyagi hung a 1-1 change to the next batter and he banged it off the wall for an RBI double.

Atsushi Nomi, who on Saturday became the oldest pitcher in Orix history to record a save, gave up a leadoff homer, a walk and an RBI double. The Buffaloes came back in the ninth against Taisho Tamai. Takahiro Okada got one run back on a pinch-hit single and Mune, launched a liner that right fielder Taishi Ota misjudged and couldn’t grab.

Tigers 3, BayStars 2

At Yokohama Stadium, Hanshin’s Joe Gunkel (3-0) gave up one run on three hits, including a solo homer to rookie Shugo Maki, and a walk over 6-1/3 innings. Gunkel, who went 3-2 last year, mostly as a reliever with a 3.18 ERA, saw his ERA rise to 0.96.

The Tigers scored twice again the first on back-to-back no-out singles, a double steal and a two-run throwing error by shortstop and former Tiger Yamato Maeda. The visitors made it 3-0 in the fourth on a Teruaki Sato double and the second of three singles in the game by Sato’s less-heralded fellow rookie Takumu Nakano.

The BayStars got a 1-2-3 inning from former closer Yasuaki Yamasaki, which qualifies as news these days, and rallied for a run in the eighth on three singles. But Tigers reliever Suguru Iwazaki started an inning-ending double play, and closer Robert Suarez eased through three batters in the ninth for his third save.

Dragons 2, Swallows 1

At Nagoya’s Vantelin Dome, Chunichi Shinnosuke Ogasawara (1-1) allowed a run over seven innings while striking out six and getting the plays he needed from his fielders. Yakult lefty Kazuto Taguchi (2-0) hung a breaking ball to Nobumasa Fukuda in the third that he hit for an RBI double, and gave up a sixth-inning homer to Takuya Kinoshita – the Dragons’ first since Opening Day.

Ogasawara got out of his only real jam of the day by retiring the Yakult slugger Munetaka Murakami with two on and one out in the sixth to protect a 1-0 lead. Right-hander Daisuke Sobue allowed two on in the ninth, but earned his fifth save thanks to third baseman Shuhei Takahashi, who nailed a runner at the plate for the second out.

Giants 9, Carp 0

At Hiroshima’s Mazda Stadium, Hiroshima’s Yusuke Nomura (0-2) allowed five runs over 3-1/3 innings, raising his ERA to 4.73 and perhaps make some ask how he became the first pitcher in the history of Japanese pro baseball to start 188 games without a relief appearance thrown in there somewhere.

Giants lefty Nobutaka Imamura (2-0) stranded two runners in the fourth and three in the fifth en route to a seven-hit, one-walk, seven-strikeout complete game on 142 pitches.

Struggling Giants cleanup hitter Kazuma Okamoto, who led the CL in homers and RBIs last season, hit a two-run homer in the first inning, his first of the year, while pinch-running specialist Daisuke Masuda hit a two-run homer in the fifth, the first of his career.

Nikkan Sports quoted Masuda as saying.  “I’m so envious of those power hitters, getting to cruise around the bases like that.”

Active roster moves 4/11/2021

Deactivated players can be re-activated from 4/21

Central League





Pacific League


BuffaloesIF40Seiichiro Oshita


EaglesP23Hayato Yuge
BuffaloesOF60Yukikazu Sano