The Hanshin Tigers, looking to win their first Japan Series title in 38 years, defied expectations in Game 1.
Hanshin swept the Orix Buffaloes 8-0 in Game 1 of the Japan Series at the Kyocera Dome in Osaka, Japan on Monday.
Hanshin starter Sho Murakami was expected to have a tough matchup against Oryx ace Yoshinobu Yamamoto, who has won four championships in three consecutive years, but the right-hander pitched a seven-inning, two-hit shutout with four strikeouts and one walk to earn the win.
Yamamoto, on the other hand, took the loss, allowing seven runs on 10 hits in 5⅔ innings with seven strikeouts and one walk.
It was a tight pitching battle until the fourth inning.
Murakami was perfect through four innings, and Yamamoto held the Hanshin bats to just two hits.
It was in the fifth inning that the balance shifted.
Hanshin rattled Yamamoto in the top of the fifth when leadoff hitter Teruaki Sato led off with a single and stole second.
Sheldon Noiji singled to right field and Watanabe followed with an RBI single.
Seiya Kinami followed with a single to put runners on first and second.
A failed sacrifice bunt by Seishiro Sakamoto put runners on first and second, but Hanshin completed the 3-0 big inning with a two-run triple to right-center field by Koji Chikamoto.
Takumu Nakano followed with a single to left to bring in the third run, making the score 4-0.
Hanshin pounded Yamamoto again in the sixth inning.
After a leadoff walk by Yusuke Oyama and a single by Noji, Kinami hit a two-run single to put runners on second and third to make it 5-0.
With two outs and runners on first and second, Sakamoto hit an RBI double off the side of the third baseman to make the score 6-0, forcing Yamamoto off the mound.
Chikamoto then drew a walk against Nobuyoshi Yamada, who took over the mound, to load the bases.
Takumu Nakano singled to bring in a runner from third to make it 7-0, but the runner from second was thrown out at home to end the long sixth inning. 카지노
With the score 7-0, Hanshin loaded the bases in the top of the ninth with singles by Chikamoto and Morishita and a walk to Oyama, and Sato’s grounder to third brought in the runner from third to make it 8-0. Following Murakami, Hanshin relievers Ren Kajiya (1 inning, 1 strikeout) and Yuta Iwasada (1 inning, 3 strikeouts) pitched perfect eighth and ninth innings to complete the 8-0 victory.
The Hanshin offense pounded out 13 hits, breaking the franchise record for most hits in a single game in a Japan series (12) set in 1964.
Meanwhile, Orix starter Yamamoto suffered the humiliation of tying the record for most runs allowed in a single game.
Hanshin, who is attempting to win the Japan Series for the first time in 38 years since 1985, took down the “four-time ace” Yamamoto in game one.
Game 2 will be held at 18:30 on the 29th at the same venue, with Yuki Nishi (8-5, 3.57 ERA) starting for Hanshin and Hiroya Miyagi (10-4, 2.27 ERA) for the Orix.