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Shunsuke Day Goes Subpar in a Rhodes-show

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Loosely translated, "That girl who goes to too many baseball games, sits in the outfield bleachers, sings all the player songs, waves towels, yells a lot, and has a jolly good time."

Shunsuke Day Goes Subpar in a Rhodes-show

1 reply. Most recent reply: Mar 31, 2008 11:37 PM by Guest

I went down to Chiba Marine Stadium this afternoon to watch the rain -- err, the game. (After all, "Chiba Lotte Marines" anagrams to "Rain becomes lost hit", so I shouldn't be too surprised.)

It was Shunsuke Day -- Lotte's Shunsuke Watanabe being one of my favorite pitchers ever -- and I had excellent seats (row 26! behind home plate!) and excellent company (you can't go wrong with a family with an overly genki 9-year-old diehard Lotte fan who likes to yell and jump a lot) but unfortunately we didn't have excellent weather nor did Shunsuke have excellent luck. The rain started to fall in the third or fourth inning or so, and continued throughout the game.

Also, I didn't know this, but the Lotteria at the stadium still has Bobby Burgers! They don't have them anywhere in Saitama (I thought they were only around for a little while a few years back), so this was my first chance to try them. Very exciting (and pretty tasty).

Orix got up 1-0 in the top of the second; after Arihito Muramatsu grounded into a double play to cancel a Greg Larocca single (btw, Alex Cabrera was notably not in the starting lineup), shortstop Mitsutaka Gotoh smacked a double to left, and Shinji Shimoyama followed it with a single to center, scoring Gotoh.

The Marines almost got a run in their half of the second. Saburo led off with a double to center, and then Ohmatsu grounded out weakly up the line, advancing Saburo. Orix starter Hidetaka Kawagoe then hit Julio Zuleta with a pitch, in the shoulder. So with runners at first and third... Satozaki, who was DHing today, struck out. Oops. But then catcher Hashimoto walked, loading the bases. Sadly second baseman, Shunichi Nemoto, in his second plate appearance of the year, struck out. Called. He seemed confused by it (as were the rest of us), and that ended the inning.

The next few innings went pretty quickly, and the rain started up more and more. There were a lot of close calls and a couple scattered hits, but that was it. Kawagoe called a timeout for a possible injury in the 6th inning, and then in the 7th ended up giving up one run to the Marines; Hashimoto singled, Nemoto singled, Nishioka grounded out. With two outs runners at second and third, and people yelling all kinds of encouragement at Daisuke Hayakawa (one guy even yelled "Don't do it for our sakes, do it for Shunsuke!!"), he grounded back to the mound. OR DID HE? Kawagoe couldn't get ahold of the ball in time and so everyone advanced a base safely, Hashimoto scoring on the play. 1-1! Jose Ortiz grounded into a fielder's choice after that.

Shunsuke was still out there pitching into the 8th. Ex-Fighter Kuniyuki Kimoto grounded out, but then Takeshi Hidaka hit a double to center -- his second double of the day, even. Sakamoto hit a popup for the second out, but then Masahiro Abe hit a low line drive to right field, over a jumping Nemoto. Saburo threw the ball in and Zuleta got the cutoff, but not in time to catch Hidaka at the plate. 2-1. Then, uh... that Tuffy Rhodes fellow came up to the plate, and he took the first pitch he saw and WHAM it went flying over the centerfield wall for a home run. 4-1, and Shunsuke was out of the game.

Ogino came in to pitch and also seemed to have some trouble at first -- he hit Greg LaRocca with a pitch and walked Muramatsu, but then Gotoh grounded out so another crisis was avoided.

Satozaki finally got a hit in the bottom of the 9th, and Nemoto literally fouled off 6 balls into the third-base stands, but the Marines weren't able to catch up and so the game ended at 4-1. Daisuke Katoh, the Buffaloes' closer, is really a pretty good pitcher. I wonder how long it'll take Orix to trade him away?

(Just kidding.)

I like Nemoto. Good to see him get a start for once, although I'm not entirely sure why Ortiz got the start at third instead of Imae (who didn't play), given that Imae has been ON FIRE, but it's okay.

Also, the additions to the stadium are pretty interesting; even though I was out there two weekends ago during open-sen, everything wasn't completely finished/ready then, including the "Auroravision" board around the infield. There's some new party/picnic areas in various places, including a section in left-center that will apparently have some special events there. Larry Rocca says they'll probably try to do an "English night" out there on Thursday night home games, so if anyone lives near Chiba and can get out there for games on Thursdays, go for it!

Speaking of Larry, he took us "backstage" for a few minutes after the game and I got to briefly meet a few of the assorted cast members of the Marines, including Bobby, who now has my brain churning on how to translate Korean (and maybe other languages?) box scores into English. Don't ask.

Also, you know, thanks to the Lotte Marines Mind Control Task Force, I got to see Shunsuke pitch from a really great angle, where the ball was usually coming up TOWARDS us. That was just plain neat. I'm always fascinated by pitchers with nonconventional deliveries, and you don't get any crazier than Sub Marine himself. Even though the Marines lost, I really enjoyed watching him pitch. Oh, if only every day could be Shunsuke Day...
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Re: Shunsuke Day Goes Subpar in a Rhodes-show

[ Author: Guest: Max Marine | Posted: Mar 31, 2008 11:37 PM ]
You are falling in love with the Marines again. ...

You are falling in love with the Marines again. ...

You are falling in love with the Marines again. ...

You are falling in love with the Marines again. ...

You are falling in love with the Marines again. ...

You are falling in love with the Marines again. ...

Because you are a very, very, very smart girl!
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