Tuesday, February 25, 2014

32 teams in 32 days - Souseikan (Nagasaki)

Souseikan makes it's second consecutive (and 2nd total) appearance at senbatsu.  Though this time they needed help from Okinawa Shougaku in winning the Meiji Jingu Tournament because until that moment they were on the outside looking in.

Road to Senbatsu
Nagasaki Prefecturals
  • def. Iki 10-0 (5 inn)
  • def. Shimabara 8-1 (8 inn)
  • def. Obama 6-0
  • def. Sasebo Kougyou 7-1
  • def. Hasami 7-1
Kyushu Super-Regionals
  • def. Kashima 4-1
  • lost Misato Kougyou 1-0
Kantoku Wasada Tatsuo (稙田 龍生), while he couldn't bring his team back to Koushien in the summer (they lost in the semifinals), he replaced almost his entire squad and made a decent run again this past fall.

Now, ignoring the name of the opponents, it is amazing that they did not let an opponent score more than 1 run - not even their loss in the super-regionals.  Put the names back in though and it dullens the achievement somewhat.

Wasada interestingly did not hold back from using his promoted ace Hirowatari Yuuki (廣渡 勇樹) though he did go to Washizaki Jyun (鷲崎 淳) and then Tachibe Takahisa (立部 峻長) only in the final against Hasami.

Hirowatari's numbers are not bad at all.  If we were to just look at the 2 super-regional games, he averaged 4.5 H/9, 8 K/9 and 2 BB/9 - all good stats.

I do have to wonder about the offense though.  In the game versus Misato Kougyou each team managed just 4 hits. Two of the holdovers from last year, Onoda Yahiro (小野田 弥啓) and Makino Shinya (牧野 慎也) may be the ones to lead the offense.  They just haven't really been tested yet and it's hard to say if their rebuild is good enough to get past the first game.

Down the stretch we come and we will visit the three 21st century teams... first up... the Eastern Tokyo representative - Toritsu Koyamadai.

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