Lotte vs Seibu, 14-16 April 2017

The weekend series vs cross-Kanto rivals Seibu represented a chance for Our Marines to get back to .500, as well as a taste of the only Pacific League team we’ve yet to see. Ultimately, what we learned is much the same as what the previous four series taught us – when the pitching is good, Chiba has a good opportunity …

Orix vs Lotte, 11-13 April 2017

The Men From Makuhari headed to Kansai this week for the first series of the year vs the suddenly strong Buffaloes, winners of 5 straight coming in. But after receiving a beating at the hands of second place Orix in game 1, Lotte rallied to take games two and three to win their second series of the year. Game 1 …

Lotte vs Rakuten, 8-9 April 2017

That’s right, folks – our buddy Mr Yuk has made his first (and hopefully last) appearance of 2017, and for games 6 & 7 to boot. Why? For all the progress Our Marines displayed in the last two games of the Fighters series, the offense looked every bit as terrible as it did in the opening series in Fukuoka in …

A Rough Start, But Plenty of Hope

Preseason action for Our Marines could not have gone better, as Chiba out-pitched and out-hit everyone en route to the first open-sen first place finish in 25 years. The pitchers that made the opening day roster ended that preseason action with a combined sub-1.00 ERA, superb even by my rosy predictions. That success didn’t translate immediately to the regular season, …

And On Into September We Go

The 2016 version of Our Marines aren’t going anywhere – for now, at least. As of this writing Chiba sits 9.5 games behind Hamu in second and 8 up on Rakuten in fourth with just 18 games to go. To my mind, that’s the very definition of “stuck in place”. Fortunately that is a good place to be stuck in. …

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SUMMERTIME AND THE LIVIN’S EASY

It looked like Our Marines were back on course for a successful summer campaign after we won our first 7 out of 10 games in August. Around mid-month it became clear that barring anything crazy we’d be locked in at 3rd place for the rest of the season. Our post-season status was secured by a lead of double digits in …

Those Bullpen Blues: Part II

July hasn’t always been the kindest month to Our Marines. The summer collapse has become somewhat of a tradition around here. Maybe it’s due to some unique home field advantage we get from the brutal early-season Marine Field conditions, but it always seems that our PL opponents hit their strides and overtake us the weather warms up. This year’s team …

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Those Bullpen Blues

Remember when the bullpen was the one constant we could always rely on to step up even when the starting pitching was, er, less than ideal? That’s (generally) still the case, but, my caveat is important. Of the four Lotte losses since the end of interleague, 3 of them are directly the result of middle relief collapses, including 2 this …

Interleague’s Over, Time to Beat Up on Pa-League

Our annual sojourn into the unknown wilderness of the Central League is complete. It’s time to take care of essential business – beating up on the rest of the Pacific League. First up, our eternal rivals from the other side of town, Seibu. Lotte @ Seibu, 24 June Lotte 7, Lions 6 WP: Ayumu Ishikawa  LP: Kona Takahashi Notables: Daichi …

Limping into Interleague

Our Marines went 2-3 on a week that started with a bang, but ended with a whimper – and even some boos. Lotte fell to 6 games back of the first place Hawks, but still hold onto 2nd over the Fighters by 1.5 games, and A-class status over Seibu by 5 games. Lotte @ Fighters, 24 May Lotte 3, Fighters …