Sunday, August 28, 2005

Back-to-Back 9th Inning Wins!

The Swallows are playing the Yokohama Baystars this weekend. On Friday night we managed to win even though we were outhit 15 to 9--courtesy of five home runs. The last of which, hit by Aoki, cleared the left field fence in the bottom of the 9th.

Aoki is currently leading the league with a .351 batting average. You would be hard-pressed to find someone who doesn't think that he has a huge future in front of him. I like him because he plays the game intelligently, and is rather soft-spoken during interviews.

I was truly amazed that we were able to pull that win off on Friday. It truly seemed like our starting pitcher, Ishikawa, and our now-very-mortal reliever, Igarashi, were determined to keep Yokohama in the ballgame. Igarashi has a tendency to crack under pressure, and Wakamatsu (the manager of the Swallows) should have been absolutely tickled that the kid managed to get out of a bases-loaded jam (that he created all by himself) with no damage in the seventh. However, he put him back in, and left him in long enough to give up 4 hits and 3 runs. He lasted only one out in the 8th.

Igarashi was again warming up in the middle innings of the game last night, and I believe that this is a good thing. He should be getting right back on the horse, because he fell pretty hard a couple of nights ago. He needs some serious help in the 'I think I can' department. I also hope that he gets a good slider and a forkball for Christmas.

Final score for friday night's game, 8-7.

The game on Saturday started off pretty shaky, but our starting pitcher, Tateyama, retrenched after giving up a two-run blast in the first to Kinjoh. He managed to make it through the following six innings while only giving up one hit! We didn't have the long-ball working for us last night, but we did end up outhitting the Baystars 10-4. We added one run to our tally in the 7th, 8th, and 9th innings for a come-from-behind win. Ishi ended up getting the win, and the go-ahead single was hit into the gap in center-left by Yuuichi. Shiroishi, our 2nd-baseman who is absolutely useless with a bat in his hands (but decent defensively), had two hits and scored the winning run.

Final score for Saturday night's game, 3-2.

I imagine that we're probably going to get clubbed tonight after pulling off two walk-off wins on Friday and Saturday night. This will be the last game that I get to go to until the beginning of October as I leave for South Korea tomorrow.