Game 6, April 9th 2009 (Koshien)
Hanshin Tigers 2 Hiroshima Carp 4
This was just one of those games. Hiroshima’s pitching was slightlybetter under Hasegawa than Hanshin’s under Ishikawa, and the Hanshin offence was contained due to good fortune, and under-performance in patches. Hiroshima took an early 2-0 lead, before Hanshin came back into the game with a great Toritani two-base hit to get Yano home for 2-1. In the forth Hiroshima added another, with slightly slow throwing from Kanoh when a runner stole to second. Mench redeemed his fielding error from the previous game with a great charge from deep to get three out. Hiroshima’s Hasegawa was pitching well, and Kurihara added another run in the fifth with a timely two base hit. Hanshin pulled one back in the eigth- Hirano was having a good game, and got home off a deep out by Kanemoto (who was largely contained by being walked twice- intentional or not, this was good for Hiroshima). In the ninth it looked like Hanshin could snatch it, but poor hitting from Sekimoto and Mench (all night actually) left two out. Katsuragi hit to first. Imaoka got a two base hit, but with runners on second and third Sakai grounded out to hand Hiroshima the victory.
This is the last post on Hanshin games for a few games, as the weekend is drawing near and I’m not that obsessed (it’s actually a good way to force me to study kanji after work, as I can do it slowly over the course of a baseball game). I’ll be missing the Kyojin series- 6pm tomorrow I have a work drinking party, and Saturday I’m going to see some real baseball (as opposed to internet coverage)- SK versus Doosan Bears in the Korean league in Jamsil, Seoul. Then sunday (2pm game) I’ll also be out. We come to the end of the rotation series tonight with Ishikawa stepping up- it’ll be interesting to see what changes in rotation are made over the three Kyojin games, as well as how the team performs away for the first time. Kyojin are hard to predict- they were poor against the Carp, and are beating Yokohama 2/2 going into tonights final game. As always they have an abundance of talent which doesn’t always translate to on-field success. Anyway, first up is tonight’s game- no team changes, just the rotation to Ishikawa from Shimoyanagi.