Chiba Lotte Marines ‘monster’ Sasaki Loki produced the best results even in the worst condition. He almost gave the victory to the Softbank Hawks, who are mired in a ’10-game losing streak’, but a miracle occurred in the bottom of the 9th inning.온라인카지노
Roki Sasaki started in the 2023 Japan Professional Baseball Softbank Hawks home match held at ZOZO Marine Stadium in Chiba, Japan on the 24th (hereinafter Korean time) and pitched 93 pitches in 6 innings, 4 hits, 9 strikeouts, 1 walk and 1 run (1 earned).
Prior to the All-Star break, Sasaki appeared in 12 games, recording double-digit strikeouts in three consecutive games, and recorded a remarkable record of 7-2 with an ERA of 1.48. Considering that his personal best speed was 165 km, his best speed that day was only 160 km. However, the fact that he achieved the best results despite his poor condition was a testament to Sasaki’s ability once again.
He struggled from the start of the game. Sasaki started the game with a hit by lead batter Taisei Makihara in the first inning. Afterwards, he struck out Kensuke Kondo and Yuki Yani Kita, representing Japan, but allowed a stolen base and was driven to second base with two out. Here, he was attacked by Akira Nakamura with a 141km slider on the 4th pitch, and gave up the first point with a timely hit. Still, Sasaki, who was not shaken anymore, struck out Kurihara Ryoya and ended the inning without allowing any additional runs.
Sasaki again faced a crisis by giving up a hit in the second inning and allowing a stolen base, but this crisis was over. In the third inning, the defense helped a lot. Sasaki was hit by Nakamura again in the 3rd inning with Kondo on 2nd and 1st base, who gave up a walk. However, at this time, Chiba Lotte first baseman Kenta Chatani helped Sasaki catch the ball with a diving catch. And he succeeded in overcoming the third crisis with hits and stolen bases in the 4th inning.
Sasaki, who managed to get 7 strikeouts in the 4th inning even in a situation where his condition was not very good, began to find stability by recording his first three-way strike against the lineup of Kai Takuya, Makihara and Kondo in the 5th inning. And he climbed the mound in the 6th inning as well, tying up the center batting line leading to Yana Kita-Nakamura-Kurihara, completing 6 innings and 1 run pitch.
On this day, Sasaki went down the mound in danger of losing without receiving support from the other line. And the Chiba Lotte lineup couldn’t score even after Sasaki went down the mound. But baseball wasn’t over until it was over. In the bottom of the ninth, Chiba Lotte’s pinch hitter Kakunaka Katsuya hit his first walk-off home run in 17 years from second out and second base in the ninth inning, winning a thrilling 2-1 come-from-behind victory, and Sasaki also ended the game with a no-decision.
According to Japan’s ‘Sponichi Annex’, after the game, Sasaki smiled broadly, saying, “It was nice to win. Kakunaka-senpai, it was great. As expected.” Next, manager Masato Yoshii said, “After the All-Star game, I rested for 4 days and threw, so I thought about 100 pitches. I wasn’t in very good condition, but I threw 6 innings well.
Kakunaka, who led Chiba Lotte to victory on the day, hit his first walk-off home run in 17 years and performed a head-first sliding ceremony while stepping on the home run. Kakunaka enjoyed the joy of victory, saying, “I felt it was a home run the moment I hit it. I was amazed that it was the first time, but I think the head first sliding at the end was a bit unfashionable.”
On the other hand, Sasaki stayed in the no-decision game that day and could not rise to a tie for second place in the Pacific League with most wins. However, he maintained his 1.48 earned run average and firmly maintained his first place, and also led the league by adding 9 strikeouts.