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CLCS Game 1: Tohno Struggles with Chunichi Lineup

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CLCS Game 1: Tohno Struggles with Chunichi Lineup
In a very important Game 1 between the Yomiuri Giants and Chunichi Dragons, by all accounts it looked like advantage Dragons. With a long layoff and sending ace lefty Wei-Ying Chen to the mound, Chunichi was looking to take a quick 2-0 series lead of a Yomiuri offense that was sans Hayato Sakamoto with an apparent back injury.

They did just that off Shun Tohno, who has struggled in the second half of the season each of the last two years. The Dragons got off to a flying start, crushing the young Yomiuri starter in the first inning and giving themselves all the offense they would need right away.

Masahiro Araki singled his way on to start the game for Chunichi and got to second on Hidenori's sac bunt. Textbook Pro Yakyu to start, and the desired result was acquired as Morino singled in the speedy Dragons shortstop.

Tohno compounded his own problems by getting into more trouble against the heart of the Chunichi lineup. He walked hometown hero Kazuhiro Wada, and Tony Blanco doubled home Morino for a 2-0 Dragons lead. It got worse as Atsushi Fujii doubled home two more runs, and that would end the scoring in the first for Chunichi.

Chen helped his own cause by retiring the first nine batters of the game, four by strikeout, including striking out the side in the third. This was en route to a scoreless six and two-thirds innings in which he scattered seven hits and hit a batter while striking out five.

The worst trouble Chen got into was when he loaded the bases with two out. Furuki and Kenji Yano (pinch-hitting for Tohno) singled their way on, and Wakiya was hit with a pitch, but Kamei chopped a pitch right in front of Tanishige, who recorded the out with no trouble.

The Dragons added to their lead in the 7th of Shugo Fujii, who was moved to the bullpen for this series. Naomichi Donoue singled home Blanco to score the game's final run and run the score to 5-0.

The Dragons now hold a 2-0 series lead and will play tomorrow in Game 2. The opportunity is there for the Dragons to take a commanding 3-0 series lead, and if I'm not mistaken, that is a deficit no Japanese team has ever come back from. The potential starters could be Kazuki Yoshimi for the Dragons against Tetsuya Utsumi for the Giants, although that will likely not be known until the first pitch.
Re: CLCS Game 1: Tohno Struggles with Chunichi Lineup
[ Author: westbaystars | Posted: Oct 22, 2010 10:26 PM | YBS Fan ]

Actually, while the Dragons have won the first two games, it's equivalent to winning 3, since they get a free first game. So at this point, they only need one more win to clinch. They didn't get it as the Giants won on Friday. But the Giants have to win all the remaining 3 games while the Dragons only need one more win.

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Michael Westbay
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