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April 8th Shimoyanagi v Saitoh - Kanemoto does it again

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April 8th Shimoyanagi v Saitoh - Kanemoto does it again
Mayumi picked up his first series win of his managerial career on the back of a very good pitching performance by Shimoyanagi and some incredible batting by Kanemoto. This time he drove in seven of Tigers eight runs and came close to hitting a home run cycle. Kanemoto is really on form and seems unstoppable. The victory was comfortable and once again showed a Carp side which need to play at a higher level if they are to challenge for the pennant. Box scores.

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Carp 0 0 1 1 0 0 0 0 0 2 11 0
Tigers 3 0 3 0 1 0 0 1 X 8 11 0

Starting lineups

1. Akamatsu (Centre)
2. Kokubo (Second)
3. Soyogi (Short)
4. Kurihara (First)
5. Seabol (Third)
6. Shima (Left)
7. Ishihara (Catcher)
8. Hirose (Right)
9. Saitoh (Pitcher)

1. Akahoshi (Centre)
2. Hirano (Second)
3. Toritani (Short)
4. Kanemoto (Left)
5. Arai (Third)
6. Sekimoto (First)
7. Mench (Right)
8. Kanoh (Catcher)
9. Shimoyanagi (Pitcher)

Most of the runs in this game would come from home runs and for seven of their nine innings Carp would strand runners on base. Akamatsu led off their first with a hit (he would have a good game). He was bunted to second but there he stayed as Shimoyanagi got the next two batters. In Tigers first Akahoshi responded in kind and then was driven round to third by a Toritani left two base hit. This brought up Kanemoto who slammed his fourth pitch into the stand just right of the scoreboard for a three run home run 3-0 Tigers. Arai and Sekimoto didn't do anything but Tigers were off to a great start. Carp's second was quiet with the batters being retired in order. In Tigers second Mench led off with a two base hit. He later reached third on a ground out but didn't get any further. Shimoyanagi started the third by dead balling Hirose. He doffed his cap and walked over to see if Hirose was OK. Next was Saitoh who blew his three bunt chances for the out. Akamatsu walked and then Kokubo hit to load the bases. Soyogi flew out in foul ground to a nice piece of pitching which brought up Kurihara. He drove the ball to left which brought a fine diving stop from Arai. Arai was up quickly and fired the ball to second but the runner was safe and Hirose was home 3-1 Tigers bases loaded. Arai failed to stop the run (which was almost impossible) but had saved another run as Carp would have scored two if the ball had reached left field. Seabol followed but he flew out to end the innings and Tigers had done well in keeping the damage to just one run. The response was immediate. With one out Toritani took a dead ball from Saitoh. This brought up Kanemoto who crushed a high slider into the same place as before. A two run home run this time 5-1 Tigers. Next was Arai who hasn't been hitting well. He lifted a low pitch nicely into the left stand for a solo home run 6-1 Tigers and Carp's attack was in tatters. Sekimoto hit but Mench and Kanoh failed to convert him.

Carp's fourth was led off by Shima who continued his ineffective form. Next came Ishihara who got ahead of the count. This irritated Shimoyanagi who left one too high and Ishihara stroked it into the left stand for another solo home run 6-2 Tigers. Why Ishihara isn't batting five or three is puzzling. He has power and ability to hit well with runners on. The rest of the batters didn't trouble Shimoyanagi who was revived by this mistake. Saitoh did not return for the fourth and Hayashi took the mound. He was effective and Tigers fourth was quiet but Carp's fifth started with another Akamatsu hit. He stole second on a low pitch by Shimoyanagi. The throw was good but Kanoh had to bring the ball up to throw and this is what gave Akamatsu the space to succeed. Akamatsu later reached third but stayed there as Kurihara grounded out to Arai. Tigers fifth saw Kanemoto at the plate with no runners on. This didn't matter as he hit his third home run of the night, this time to right 7-2 Tigers. Arai and Sekimoto followed and both grounded out. Shimoyanagi returned for the Carp sixth. He had fought hard and you felt that this was his last innings. He gave up a hit to Seabol but once again Shima failed. Another hit to Ishihara followed and Carp had runners on first and second with one out. The next two batters flew out to Akahoshi trying to convert the runners and the innings was over. Dohmann took over for Tigers sixth and all three batters tried to hit him out of the ground. All of them flew out.

Shimoyanagi didn't return for the seventh. Mayumi had learned and he brought on Watanabe. He looked a little rusty and nervous. He gave up a hit to Akamatsu and then walked Soyogi to set up runners on first and second with one out and Kurihara next. At this point Arai ambled over to the mound. The conversation probably went along the lines of put the ball in that spot and I'll do the rest. Watanabe duly dropped his third pitch low in the right spot and Kurihara drove it along the third baseline straight into the waiting Arai's glove. The double play that followed was a formality and the innings was over. Dohmann returned for Tigers seventh and gave up a hit to Hirano. He advanced to second on a Toritani ground out and then third on a balk by Dohmann. Next batter Kanemoto and what would he do. Kanemoto took a ball and then slammed his second pitch along the third baseline but it drifted foul so no home run but it had been close. That was the attempt and next pitch Kanemoto drove the ball into right field for the run 8-2 Tigers runner on first. Arai followed with a two base hit and Tigers had runners on second and third. Enter Ueno who took on Sekimoto and got him to fly out to a nice catch by Akamatsu who took it low running in and the innings was over. Watanabe returned for the eighth and looked a lot more comfortable. He gave up a hit to Seabol but then struck out the next two batters and got Kida (pinch hitter) to ground out and end the innings. Tigers eighth saw Kanoh hit but nothing came of this. The big question was who would pitch the Carp's ninth. It turned out to be Abe. He gave up a lead off hit to Amaya but then got Akamatsu to fly out. Kokubo hit which meant that Abe would face Kurihara with runners on unless he could get the double play. Tigers tried this but only got one and so Abe faced Kurihara. He left his fourth pitch invitingly placed and Kurihara duly took the bait driving it straight down Hirano's (replacement right) throat. End of game - Tigers victory and the first series win of the year.

Tigers had done well. Their fielding had been of a higher standard and they had never allowed the Carp to develop momentum. Mayumi had done well with his pitchers and Kanoh had once again been assured behind the plate. Of course the victory had been based on the incredible performance by Kanemoto but Arai had begun to hit. Mench continued his improvement and had looked a lot more comfortable. Shimoyanagi had done well for his first start and the victory was very welcome.
Re: April 8th Shimoyanagi v Saitoh - Kanemoto does it again
[ Author: Guest: N26 | Posted: Apr 9, 2009 3:33 PM ]

It seemed as if Hanshin were able to bring the momentum from yesterday´s game over to this game. Kanemoto right now, is a super human. This 41 year old is simply amazing. And the other 41 year old Shimoyanagi too looked very solid. A very comfortable win by Hanshin. Hanshin looking strong. This was the first game of the season where both Arai and Kanemoto hit a homerun.

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