Hanshin updates are becoming sparser and sparser on this blog, I know. There are many reasons for this, but don’t doubt that I still check the scores every day and watch as many games as I can. In fact, over the weekend I was fortunate enough to see one full game, and bits of another game in our series vs Kyojin on Korean TV.
Friday- Meltdown in the Ninth
I saw the last few innings of this game. With Kyojin leading 1-0 going into the ninth, up stepped this happy character, Ochi Daisuke, to close. While not the three home runs in a row I posted a few days ago, his meltdown wasn’t far off that! It started with Arai hitting to first. Then Toritani stepped up, and smacked the first pitch he faced into the raito sutando for a 2-run homer, and a 2-1 lead to the Tigers. Things only got better from here on in – Kanoh got a base hit, that turned into a two-baser after an error, and then Lin slammed another ball into the stands for a 4-1 lead. To top things off, even when Kyojin changed pitchers to Michael, we still had the last word- a great hit by that bubbly character Katsuragi to give Tigers an unassailable 5-1 lead. Fujikawa closed out.
Sunday – A Narrow Victory
I missed the run in the 10th- I only got to see the first 4 innings or so, but it was clear this one could go the distance, with Nohmi on top of his game, unfortunately not getting the win for himself due to Hanshin not making the most of their hits. It remained 0-0 into the enchou, until Kanoh was driven in by Aniki off a wobbling Kroon, with Fujikawa getting the best of the closer-battle.
I should add for completeness that we lost on the saturday, and that we lost on monday- to Yakult, while yesterday’s game was rained off. Tonight is our final game vs the Swallows, and then there will be a break until next tuesday, as the All Star Games take place on Friday and Saturday- sadly this year there are zero Hanshin players included, but I’ll probably blog something about it (the All Star Games are Central League vs Pacific League).