Saturday, August 2, 2008

Day 1 - Game 1 - Shimonoseki Kogyo (Yamaguchi) vs. Komadai Iwamizawa (Kita Hokkaido)

10:24 AM
We're about to get underway here with the 90th Summer Koshien Tournament! I have 3 computers going here. One to watch the game, one for this blog and one for the chat room (once it shows up).

10:31 AM
Whohoo! Live feed up!

10:36 AM
And we're underway! And I'm having problem with my connection, natch...
Shimonoseki Kogyo (Yamaguchi)
RF Saitou (9)
2B Aoki (4)
P Yonaga (1)
SS Ogino (6)
C Toyota (2)
1B Kawano (3)
3B Hamamoto (5)
LF Harada (7)
CF Matsunaga (8)

Komadai Iwamizawa (Kita Hokkaido)
CF Aoyama (8)
RF Kawamura (9)
LF Kodaira (7)
C Matsumoto (2)
3B Oikawa (5)
SS Furukawa (6)
1B Satou Shuuki (3)
P Itaki (1)
2B Takagi (4)

1st Inning
Connection issues prevented me from catching this inning. But there were some spectacular plays made in the inning that I will get to. (See below)

Top 1st (Replayed via Asahi website following day)
Itaki looks a little shaky right out of the box. He walks Saitou on 4 straight, and isn't even close to Aoki walking him on 4 straight as well. But instead of trying to make Itaki throw a strike, Yonaga looks to bunt! And he pops up to Itaki for the first out. If he was struggling to even throw a strike, you have to just sit and wait to see at least until he throws one.

Shimonoseki isn't listening though, and Ogino swings at a 1-2 pitch way outside for the second out. So, Itaki is about to get out of this mess it looks like after giving up 2 consecutive walks to start the game.

Toyota is battling at the plate though, fouling off a couple of pitches. And he hits one to Takagi at 2nd, but it's through his legs! Saitou is rounding third, Aoyama comes up with the laser throw, and... Saitou's out at home! What a wonderful throw by Aoyama to nail Saitou at the plate!

Bottom 1st
Aoyama looks to get the inning started for Komadai, and does so with the leadoff walk. Kawamura looks to put down the bunt, but it's too hard, and Yonaga goes to 2nd for the out, and almost turns 2!

Kodaira hits a soft liner to right, and there's 2 down.

Kawamura goes for 2nd on the first pitch to Matsumoto and he's barely in! The throw was in time, but the tag was late. Yonaga goes ahead of Matsumoto 0-2, but then falls back to 2-2. And a liner to center! Kawamura rounds 3rd for home, but Matsunaga throws to Ogino who relays it to Toyota and he's out at home too! Two nice plays from center to gun the runner out at home keep the game scoreless early!

Top 2nd
Shimoseki gets liner from Kawano to start the inning! Hamamoto looks to drop down the bunt and 1B Satou bobbles it! Runners at 1st and 2nd!

But Kawano is caught off 2nd by Matsumoto on the 1-0 pitch to Harada. And then Hamamoto gets caught stealing on the 2-1 count! To top it off, Harada strikes out to end the inning.

Bottom 2nd
Oikawa grounds one to Aoki at 2nd, but he bobbles it! Oikawa is safe at first! Furukawa looks to put the bunt down, goes to 2-2 and does, but it's too hard and the pitcher is able to go to 2nd for the out! And Komadai goes down thereafter.

Top 3rd
One down for leadoff batter Saitou. And he drives one to deep right center! And he's in easily with a triple. Good chance for Shimonoseki! Aoki has a chance to drive one in, but he grounds to Oikawa. And Saitou's caught off 3rd! He goes home and is tagged out! What in the world was he thinking?!!! Yonaga grounds to short to end the inning. What a waste of a great opportunity!

Bottom 3rd
Last batter Takagi takes one to left center. Matsunaga leaps and doesn't get it! He's in with a triple!! And Aoyama doubles past Harada to score the first run! 1-0

Komadai keeps the pressure going. Kawamura puts a bunt down the first base line and is safe at first! He promptly steals 2nd on the 1-0 count! Kodaira then sends one through the right side and a drawn in infield to score another! And Saitou with a bad throw allows Kodaira to advance to 2nd! 2-0

After a walk to Matsumoto, it's curtains for Yonaga, and he's pulled from the game for #10 Yasumoto, a submariner. Yonaga moves to left.

And looking to stem the tide, Yasumoto gets Oikawa to strike out looking. But he runs the count full to Furukawa... Ball 4! Another run scores! 3-0

Satou comes up and grounds one to short. His only play is at first and another run scores! 4-0

The 9th batter to come to the plate, P Itaki drives one to right center for a bases clearing triple! The rout is on!! 6-0

Mercifully, Takagi lines to left to end the inning, but the damage is certainly done.

Top 4th
Ogino starts it off with a 4 pitch walk. Neither pitchers look real sharp here. Then Toyota hits it to Takagi who instead of making the easy play at first, goes to 2nd and throws it away! And Kawano singles through the right side! Bases loaded!!

1-2 pitch to Hamamoto looks good, but doesn't get the call! 2-2 way high! This could be disastrous!! But he lines to right.

It's now the new pitchers' turn. Yasumoto is up to bat. Can he help bring the team back?

Itaki already looks like he's laboring on the mound! But he gets Yasumoto to strike out! One out away from escaping! And he does! Matsunaga flies to right and Shimonseki can't score!

Bottom 4th
Wow! What a leadoff batter in Aoyama! He lines one sharply down the first base line all the way to the wall for a triple!! But none of the next 3 batters can get the ball past the infield, swinging on early counts and stranding Aoyama at 3rd.

Top 5th
All Shimonoseki can muster is a one out single by Yonaga. Ogino looked for a base hit, but Kawamura makes a shoestring catch to end the inning!

Bottom 5th
Furukawa gets a one out single up the middle. Satou follows that up with one through the right side, setting the table up for Itaki. And he lines one to center on the first pitch scoring another! 7-0!

Takagi delivers another hit up the middle scoring Satou. 8-0

Aoyama and Kawamura swing on first pitches and get out quickly, but Komadi extends the lead. It's break time, but Komadai seems to have put the game away already. It could just be formalities here as Komadai Iwamizawa finally gets to advance to the next round!

Top 6th
Shimonoseki isn't giving up though. Toyota gets hit to lead off the inning. Then Kawano singles through the right side. And then Itaki falls behind to Hamamoto 3-0! Throws a strike before walking the batter! Bases loaded for Yasumoto!!

And the bullpen starts warming up for Komadai Iwamizawa...

1-0... Low, 2-0... Outside and high, 3-0... And Itaki is really laboring under the heat. And high and wide! 8-1!

And that's it for Idaki. #10 Numadate comes in, a righty with average stuff and a slow curve. He gets Matsunaga to fly out, but Kawano scores from 3rd and Hamamoto tags to 3rd. 8-2.

Saitou plates another with a grounder to short. Furuka goes to 2nd for the force, and the deficit is cut to 8-3.

Just when it seems like they're trading runs for outs, Aoki walks on 4 straight! Now there's runners on 1st and 2nd, and Komadai isn't out of the woods just yet!!

Yonaga gets a chance to redeem himself here with a timely hit. Count goes to 1-1, and a low fastball goes to 2-1. And he lines one to right and the bases are loaded again!!!

The 9th batter comes up in Ogino. The TV shows the wind blowing in from right to left. And Numadate falls behind 2-0! Gets a slider on the outside corner, then Ogino fouls another slider off, 2-2. And he strikes out swinging!!! Shimonoseki gets 3 runs, but they're still down by 5.

Bottom 6th
Yasumoto's control is still a little sketchy. He gives up a one out walk to Matsumoto, then a single to Furukawa. But the 3rd-1st pickoff throw actually works this time, catching Furukawa off 1st to end the inning.

Top 7th
Shimonseki goes in order. They may be waving the white flag here...

Bottom 7th
Itaki gets his 3rd hit of the game, a one-out single up the middle. Takagi bunts him along looking for Aoyama to drive him in. After falling behind 0-2, he manages a walk to extend the inning for Numadate. He works the count full, and the runners will be taking off. Fouled off...

Then he singles to left! Itaki rounds 3rd heading home, but Yonaga gets it early, throws home and nails Itaki at the plate. Still 8-3.

Top 8th
After Yasumoto strikes out to start the inning, Numadate walks Matsunaga on 4 straight. Then Saitou singles to center. Runners at 1st and 2nd with 1 down.

He falls behind 2-0 to Aoki, but works it back to 2-2. He doesn't get the call on a curve outside, and the count runs full. Fastball down, Aoki takes it to center scoring Matsunaga! 8-4!

Onagi gets a chance to help his own cause, and drives it to deep right, but Itaki makes a backwards jump and just gets it!

It's still tenous, and then Ogino walks on 4 straight! First pitch, Toyota makes a bid trying to put one through the right side. Takagi gets it and throws to Numadate, but it isn't in time to get a sliding Toyota! Saitou scores! 8-5!! Now it's looking like a ballgame!

Numade still struggling, falling behind 3-1 to Kawano. Ball high! Another run scores and now its' 8-6!! What is going on here??!!

Komadai's manager has seen enough. Itaki returns from right to take the mound once again to stop the bleeding. Another base hit and this game could be tied!

But Itaki goes ahead in the count 0-2. Hamamoto chops one up the middle and Itaki nabs it! He makes the throw to 1st and preserves the now tenous 2 run lead!!

Bottom 8th
Kotani leads off the inning with a double to center. But he's too aggressive and leaves on a short liner to 2nd and is doubled off. Matsunaga then makes a fine diving catch to end the inning. But they're down to their final 3 outs.

Top 9th
#11 Shiraishi comes in to pinch hit. Falls behind 1-2 and strikes out on a low slider. Matsunaga flies out to left on the first pitch, and now it's down to Saitou.

Swings at slider away, 0-1. Slider away again, called strike 0-2. Fouls off another away pitch. And he grounds to 2nd and Komadai Iwamizawa holds on for the 8-6 victory. They will go ahead to face Moriokadai Fuzoku in the 2nd round.

Shimonosek Kogyo (Yamaguchi)
RF Saitou (9) - 2-5, 3B, R, RBI, K, BB
2B Aoki (4) - 2-3, R, RBI, 2 BB
P-LF Yonaga (1) - 1-5
SS Ogino (6) - 3-2, 2 K, 2 BB
C Toyota (2) - 1-4, R, RBI, BB
1B Kawano (3) - 2-3, R, RBI, BB
3B Hamamoto (5) - 0-4, R, BB
LF Harada (7) - 0-1, K
P Yasumoto (10) - 0-2, RBI, 2 K, BB
PH Shiraishi (11) - 0-1, K
CF Matsunaga (8) - 9-3, RBI, BB

Komadai Iwamizawa (Kita Hokkaido)
CF Aoyama (8) - 2-3, 2B, 3B, R, RBI, 2 BB
RF Kawamura (9) - 1-4, R
P Numadate (10) - 1-1
RF Adachi (17) - No AB
LF Kodaira (7) - 2-5, 2B, R, RBI
C Matsumoto (2) - 1-3, R, 2 BB
3B Oikawa (5) - 0-5, K
SS Furukawa (6) - 2-3, 2R, RBI, BB
1B Satou Shuuki (3) - 1-4, R, RBI
P-RF-P Itaki (1) - 3-4, 3B, 3 RBI
2B Takagi (4) - 2-3, 3B, R, RBI

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