On a splendid summer afternoon at QVC Marine Field, the Marines edged the Nippon Ham Fighters with a 2-1 victory. With veterans Okada and Ohmatsu in the lineup and Nishino on the bump, Lotte shook off some early troubles with the same coolness as the breeze blowing in off Tokyo Bay.
When Chunichi and Lotte get together, brevity and subtlety tend to go AWOL. These last two games with the Dragons at QVC Marine Field were no exception.
The four game losing streak is kaput. With the punch of 10 hits to propel them and the control of 4 pitchers to guide them home, Our Marines closed out the season series with the DeNA BayStars in grand fashion – an efficient 3-1 victory. With the win, Chiba stretches their lead in the Pacific League back to 1.5 games.
It was rough afternoon for the Marines at Koshien Stadium, scoring only 3 runs on 15 hits while committing 2 errors. The season finale with the Tigers was punctuated by a Matt Murton sayonara homerun, as Hanshin walked off with a 4-3 win. Lotte hit into four double plays on the day, contributing to a total of ten men left on base. Starting pitcher Ohmine was pulled after three innings (0ER) for the second straight start, while the NPB save leader Masuda was charged with the blown save and the loss. The Marines finished the year winless against the Tigers at 0-3-1. Their lead in the Pacific League also falls to two games, and Lotte is now two games out of the inter-league title with only four games left to go.
Image: From marines.co.jp
With today’s win, Lotte now has the best record in the NPB, top position in the inter-league title race, and first place in the Central League.
For the second game in a row the Marines held off a late offensive attack by Yomiuri, defeating the Giants this afternoon by a score of 3-2. Imae continued to tear it up in the number four slot, golfing a two-run double to left in the 3rd inning. Our ace Naruse looked great early on, highlighting his performance by recording his 1,000th career strike out in the 3rd. Despite a scoreless 4 innings to start the game, Naruse departed clinging to a 3-2 lead with 1 out in the 7th. However, the bullpen shut the Giants down again for 2 2/3 innings, preserving the win for Naruse.
Our Marines gave another stunning ensemble pitching performance – for the second night in a row throwing a wet, lead-filled blanket on the Chunichi bats and cruising to a victory. This one featured no come-from-behind heroics, just runs when they were needed and pitching all night long. When the last out was recorded, it was a nice 3-1 Lotte victory and the 4th win in a row. Outstanding.
The Marines finished the year 2-0 at Yokohama Stadium as they closed the books this afternoon on a 4-1 win over the BayStars. The Eagles and Lions both lost today, growing our lead to three games atop the Pacific League.