@ Swallows – September 10-11 – Blowouts in Split Series

Who cares about the Hanshin Tigers’ season anymore? Screw this team and their summer of pathetic play. They couldn’t have won the high school tournament at Koshien Stadium this year. Bad defense that makes high schoolers look good, a pathetic 21-33-2 record in their home building, and just a game separating them from the last place Chunichi Dragons. The only thing that can save them is a Dragons team doing equally badly. They won’t make the playoffs and my wife gave birth to son #2 on Friday night.

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Game 131 – Saturday 9/10: Yamada Yamada Yamada Your Mother Yo’ Mama

Atsushi Nohmi served up a 3-run homer to Tetsuto Yamada in the first before recording an out, and the game was over. A few more runs scored later, I hear, thanks to some guy named Yamada or something. And some pitcher named Minoru Iwata returned from 5 months on the farm, only to give up 4 runs in one inning, including a home run to some guy named Yamada or something.

Final Score: Swallows 9, Tigers 1. Team Record: 55-73-3. LP: Nohmi (8-11)

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Game 132 – Sunday 9/12: One Player Figured Out Yamanaka. That Was Enough.

After two embarrassing complete game losses to the soft-tossing submariner Yamanaka, the team looked poised to have its first winless week of the year. But hits, even a home run, came from an unexpected source: the ¥400-million man, Takashi Toritani. An RBI single in the third was followed by a solo home run in the fifth. In the sixth, with Yamanaka already in the dugout, the Tigers loaded the bases with no outs, which usually gives them nothing… but another unexpected source of run production gave them another run: starter Yuta Iwasada. Dr. Jekyll showed up again on this night, as the young lefty hurled a complete game shutout, striking out 8 and scattering 4 hits. For good measure, Kosuke Fukudome clouted his 10th homer of the year in the top of the 7th (after missing by a foot or two in the fifth).

Final Score: Tigers 5, Swallows 0. Team Record: 56-73-3. WP: Iwasada (7-9)

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T-Ray is the founder, chief writer and Junior Executive Vice President of Hanshin Tigers English News (H-TEN). Find him on Twitter @thehanshintiger.