Tag Archives: Yasuaki Yamasaki

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

Activated

None

Dectivated

SwallowsP14Hirotoshi Takanashi

Pacific League

Activated

BuffaloesP58Kazuyuki Kaneda
BuffaloesOF69Stefen Romero

Dectivated

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

NPB wrap 4-1-21

Instead of an April Fool’s story, we have an example of the common Japanese media genre of baseball and celebrity reporting, called “someone got married and here’s what we know about their partner.”

No fooling

The top news at noon on Thursday was Nippon Ham Fighters infielder Takuya Nakashima’s announcement of his marriage, with Sponichi Annex reporting the news was not an April Fools joke. Sometimes these stories make one wish they were attempts at humor.

The headline reads: “Nippon Ham’s Nakashima’s said ‘It’s not a lie’ in response to his wedding announcement to an ordinary woman from Kyushu being dubbed an April Fool’s joke.

Try putting that in a newspaper.

The Japanese media will refer to athlete’s spouses by their job description if it is known. When Hideki Matsui got married, his wife was identified as the daughter of a salaried worker from Toyama Prefecture. When the job is unknown, they refer to players’ brides as “ordinary” — in the sense that they are not celebrities.

Nakashima revealed that the pair had been living together for a year, and that his spouse is a cheerful person with an expansive cooking repertoire.

“I’m on the road a lot, and she takes care of our home, including the cooking,” said Nakashima said, who was famously featured in Episode 1,015 of the Fangraphs podcast “Effectively Wild,” which failed to comment on his marital status.

Buffaloes ace Yamamoto gets do-over

At Osaka’s Kyocera Dome, Orix Buffaloes ace Yoshinobu Yamamoto (1-1) asked for a chance to make up for his poor Opening Day start by going on short rest against the SoftBank Hawks on Thursday and responded with 13 strikeouts in a 2-0 complete-game win.

The right-hander walked one and allowed two singles. After throwing 109 pitches over eight innings, skipper Satoshi Nakajima said he toyed with the idea of pulling his ace but kept him, and Yamamoto answered with a 1-2-3 ninth.

The Buffaloes managed just one run off Shota Takeda (0-1) in 6-1/3 innings, opening the scoring on three straight first-inning singles.

Marines secure win-column beachhead

At Chiba’s Zozo Marine Stadium, the Lotte Marines won for the first time this season, blasting the Rakuten Eagles 16-5 behind four useful innings from rookie Fumiya Motomae (1-0) in his pro debut.

Leonys Martin and Brandon Laird each homered off Yuta Takinaka (0-1), who gave up 10 runs in 1-2/3 innings, while Hisanori Yasuda doubled twice and drove in five runs.

The Eagles came in with a highly-touted top five of Hideaki Wakui, Masahiro Tanaka, rookie Takahisa Hayakawa, Takayuki Kishi and Takahiro Norimoto. But a calf injury to Tanaka forced the Eagles to go to a bullpen day on March 27, a 9-4 beating at the hands of the Nippon Ham Fighters.

At Yokohama Stadium, the DeNA BayStars put Yakult Swallows rookie Taichi Yamano on the rack for seven runs over 1-1/3 innings in his pro debut, and got a refreshingly good performance from their former closer Yasuaki Yamasaki, but remained winless after an 11-11, 4-hour, 20-minute tie.

Scott McGough struck out the heart of the BayStars order in the seventh as one of five Swallows relievers to deliver a scoreless inning as the visitors erased a five-run deficit to leave the series with two wins and a tie.

Yamasaki, who lost his closer job last year and spent the spring with the minor league club, got hit hard the night before despite a good fastball, that was even better on Thursday.

At Nagoya’s Vantelin Dome, Yuki Takahashi (1-0) allowed an unearned run on three walks and four hits over seven innings for the Yomiuri Giants in a 3-1 win over the Chunichi Dragons.

Zelous Wheeler continued to produce for the Giants in the No. 2 slot, singling and doubling to open Yomiuri’s three-run sixth with a double off Dragons lefty Takahiro Matsuba (0-1).

Rubby De La Rosa worked a 1-2-3 ninth to earn the save in his season debut.

At Hiroshima’s Mazda Stadium, Hanshin Tigers captain Kento Itohara tripled and scored in the first inning and cracked a three-run home run to power a 6-3 win over the Hiroshima Carp.

Jefry Marte scored Itohara in the first with a sacrifice fly and doubled and scored on a Jerry Sands sac fly in the seventh. Marquee rookie Teruaki Sato followed with a solo homer for the visitors. Tigers starter Takumi Akiyama (1-0) allowed two runs over seven innings.

Hiroshima reliever Robert Corniel struck out two in the ninth in his NPB debut. New Carp Kevin Cron went 1-for-4 with a single.

Starting pitchers

Pacific League

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

Kosei Yoshida (-) vs Kota Futaki (0-1, 9.00)

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

Hideaki Wakui (1-0, 0.00) vs Sachiya Yamasaki (-)

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

Shuta Ishikawa (1-0, 1.29) vs Kona Takahashi (1-0, 3.68)

Central League

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

Ryoma Nogami (-) vs Yasuhiro Ogawa (0-0, 4.76)

BayStars vs Carp: Yokohama Stadium 5:45 pm, 4:45 am EDT

Haruhiro Hamaguchi (0-0, 15.00) vs Daichi Osera (0-0, 2.45)

Tigers vs Dragons: Kyocera Dome (Osaka) 6 pm, 5 am EDT

Shintaro Fujinami (0-0, 3.60) vs Koji Fukutani (0-0, 7.20)

Active roster moves 4/1/2021

Deactivated players can be re-activated from 4/11, except for those marked with an asterisk as coronavirus protocol deactivations. These players can be reactivated as soon as they are declared safe to play.

Central League

Activated

GiantsP47Yuki Takahashi
GiantsIF32Taishi Hirooka
TigersP46Takumi Akiyama
DragonsP38Takahiro Matsuba
BayStarsP27Taiga Kamichatani
CarpP67Yuta Nakamura
SwallowsP21Taichi Yamano
SwallowsIF1Tetsuto Yamada *
SwallowsIF3Naomichi Nishiura *

Dectivated

GiantsP21Shoichi Ino
SwallowsIF5Shingo Kawabata *

Pacific League

Activated

HawksP18Shota Takeda
MarinesP49Fumiya Motomae
EaglesP57Ryota Takinaka
EaglesP64Hiroyuki Fukuyama *

Dectivated

FightersC68Ryo Ishikawa