“Monster pitcher” Yoshinobu Yamamoto (25-Oryx Buffaloes) pitched a nine-inning complete game to keep the series alive. He threw 138 pitches and had the added responsibility of closing out the game.
Yamamoto pitched nine innings of one-hit ball, allowing one run on nine hits and one walk while striking out 14 in a complete-game victory over the Hanshin Tigers in Game 6 of the Nippon Professional Baseball 2023 Japan Series (JS) at the Kyocera Dome in Osaka, Japan, on Thursday. He threw a whopping 138 pitches. His fastball touched 158 kilometers.
His 14 strikeouts set a new Japan Series record for most strikeouts in a game. The previous record was 13 by Darvish Yu in Game 1 of the 2007 Japan Series.
Yamamoto is the best pitcher in Nippon Professional Baseball. In 23 appearances this season, he posted an MVP-caliber 16-6 record with a 1.21 ERA and 196 strikeouts, becoming the first pitcher in NPB history to win four major awards (wins, ERA, strikeouts, and winning percentage) in three consecutive years. He also became the third consecutive winner of the Sawamura Award, Japan’s top pitcher award, which was announced on October 30.
He was in monster mode during the regular season. However, he has struggled in fall baseball.
Yamamoto was battered by the Hanshin bats in Game 1 of the Japan Series on Oct. 28, giving up seven runs on 10 hits with seven strikeouts and one walk in 5⅔ innings. He had previously won Game 1 of the final stage of the climactic series against the Chiba Lotte Marines on Oct. 18, but his performance was not as good, giving up five runs on 10 hits in seven innings.
It was his second start of the Japan series. He was hit hard from the start. 카지노사이트
The first inning was clean. He retired Kochi Chikamoto on a fly ball to left field, Takumu Nakano on a fly ball to center field, and Shota Morishita on a strikeout to start the inning.
However, the next inning, they gave up a run. In the top of the second, he was hit by a 156-kilometer fastball from Sheldon Neuig. The ball sailed over the right field fence.
It didn’t lead to any additional runs. A walk to Teruaki Sato, a single to Genta Itohara, and a hard-hit ball to Seishi Sakamoto put runners on the corners, but he struck out Koji Chikamoto to put out the fire.
Yamamoto settled down. He gave up a leadoff single to Nakano in the third, but retired the next three batters to get out of the inning.
In the fourth, he was shaken up after giving up back-to-back singles. He struck out Sakamoto and then walked Koji Chikamoto on a fly ball to right field. Hanshin requested a video review, claiming the ball was caught after it hit the fence, but the call was not overturned.
Yamamoto was clearly alive. He retired two straight batters in order in the fifth and sixth innings. Back on the mound in the seventh, Yamamoto was shaken up two batters later when he gave up back-to-back singles to Chikamoto and Nakano, but they didn’t lead to runs. He got Morishita to fly out to second base to end the inning.
Despite having already thrown 109 pitches, Yamamoto was still in the game in the eighth. He struck out Yusuke Oyama, grounded out to shortstop Sheldon Noji, and walked Sato.
Geary completed the shutout. In the ninth, Yamamoto took the mound and the Oryx fans roared. He gave up a leadoff single to Seiya Kinami, but struck out pinch-hitter Watanabe and got Chakamoto to ground out to second base to end the game with his own hands.
Oryx manager Satoshi Nakajima said, “Yamamoto had a bad game last time (Game 1), but I believed in him because I thought there was no way he would get beaten twice in a row. I put everything on him in this match,” he said, showing his unwavering trust in Yamamoto.
Yamamoto smiled broadly. “I took the mound thinking that everyone was worried,” he said. I gave up the lead, but I was in good shape, so I was able to throw calmly.”
As for setting the record for most strikeouts, he said, “It’s thanks to Kenya Wakatsuki (catcher). I knew I struck out a lot. But I concentrated on pitching one inning at a time and didn’t worry about (striking out).”
“I want to win tomorrow and make Nakajima the best manager in Japan,” Yamamoto said.