Saturday, August 1, 2009

Pro Yakyu Super Summer Extravaganza Day 2: Yokohama vs. Hiroshima @ Mazda Zoom Zoom Stadium 08/01/09

You think you've been to a baseball town? You know your in one when the manhole covers have the local baseball team's logo on them. Hanshin doesn't have anything on Hiroshima baby!

Hello once again everyone. Even though I've traveled around this country far and wide to see professional baseball, Hiroshima will always be my most favorite place to visit. The people are great, the food is the best, and it's just a great place to be all around. So in keeping up with my Super Summer Extravaganza, let's get to the second game of the BayStars/Hiroshima series shall we?

Shuichi Murata playing catch before the game.

Murata practing his glovework so he won't commit anymore errors at 3rd base. ;)

The starters for the game were Ryan Glynn for Yokohama and Keisuke Imai for the Carp. Now, as we all know, this season hasn't been the best for Ryan Glynn as his win/loss record is very ugly and the offense tends to die down whenever he's on the mound A.K.A. he gets no run support whatsoever. But, tonight was different. Ryan was phenomenal through his first 4 innings of work only giving up one hit. Imai too, wasn't that bad either only giving up 3 hits. So the early parts of the game were kind of boring and the scoring didn't really get started until the 5th inning.

Yokohama starter Ryan Glynn after throwing a pitch.

Glynn, Glynn You are my Hero! Hey, Yo Let's Go Ryan!

Keisuke Imai just before throwing his first pitch of the game.

Imai is determined to get that strikeout.

Yokohama started the scoring in this game as Kazuya Fujita hit a 2 run home run to right field in the top of the 5th to give Yokohama a 2-0 lead. But, despite the run support, Glynn imploded in the bottom of the 5th by giving up 3 runs and the game as well. It all started when Takuro Ishii doubled to right along the foul line and then advanced to third on a wild pitch. Tsubasa Aizawa then walked which brought up pinch hitter Go Kida who doubled to left center to make it 2-1. Then, Akihiro Higashide brought in two more with a single to center to give Hiroshima a 3-2 lead. Yokohama added another run in the top of the 6th thanks to a wild pitch by pitcher Takeshi Komatsu which tied the game at 3 a piece. Now, what spelled the end for Yokohama in this game was their defense. Much like Hiroshima the night before, commiting costly errors at the wrong time hurt the BayStars but it wasn't as bad in my opinion because Hiroshima had already taken the lead by the time the bottom of the 8th rolled around.

Hiroshima outfielder Masafumi Suenaga at the plate.

Soichiro Amaya singled to left in the bottom of the 8th and Yokohama then changed pitchers taking out Yuya Ishii and putting in Yasuhiro Oyamada. After consecutive walks to Kenta Kurihara and Scott McClain, Yuki Yoshimura misplayed a fly ball (and believe me folks it was terrible) hit by Andy Phillips that went for 2 runs and made it 5-3 Hiroshima. After that, Takuro Ishii used the squeeze bunt play to bring McClain in from 3rd base to add another insurance run to make the final score 6-3.

Also interesting was that Hiroshima closer Katsuhiro Nakagawa earned his 150th career save in this game but I couldn't get a picture of the screen because by this time it had started to rain heavily and about 200 people were jammed into the concourse trying to stay dry. All in all, a great game but Yokohama's errors cost them big time. Hopefully, they'll have better luck against Hiroshima ace Kan Otake tonight.

Katsuhiro Nakagawa after receiving flowers commemorating his 150th save.

(Photo courtesy of the Chugoku Shimbun Online. 写真:中国新聞)

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