In lieu of an actual game report, I will show some photos and just kind of talk about how things went along the way.
Some of these are repeats from the placeholder post. I figured it made sense to just have everything together in one photo post in the end.
So, first, the ceremonial first pitch was Randy Johnson. Apparently he is in Japan shopping for music? I dunno, got that pointer from NPB Tracker...
The Marines starter was Yuki "Karaage-kun" Karakawa, who is now old enough to drink.
The Eagles starter was Satoshi Nagai, another one of Toyodai's finest.
Here is Norihiro Nakamura hitting a 2-run home run in the 2nd inning, which made it 2-0.
Here is Takeshi Yamasaki. He got on base via an error in the 4th inning (a grounder to shortstop and somehow it didn't connect at first. The amusing thing is, I had turned down to my scorecard to write the 6-3... and then the entire stadium roared as he was safe! Whoops. Then he got into a rundown during Norihiro Nakamura's at-bat, caught off second between Imae and Nishioka.
The Marines tied the game between the 4th and the 5th inning, on a Satozaki RBI double and a sac fly by Tae-Kyun Kim, to make it 2-2.
Here's the bottom of the 5th inning. Fuminori Yokogawa was hit by a pitch and got on base, though he was caught out at home on a Naoto Watanabe grounder shortly after I took this photo of him standing on third base.
Then Takeshi Yamasaki hit a single to center that scored Hijirisawa and Naoto -- here they are at the dugout. 4-2.
Teppei followed it up with a single and Yosuke Takasu broke for home, diving over Satozaki. He was safe. 5-2.
Karakawa came out of the game at that point. Norihiro and Kusano hung out in the on-deck circle waiting for Itoh to come to the mound, and something funny happened in the Marines dugout but I have no clue what.
In the bottom of the 8th, Bryan Corey was pitching...
And Teppei walked, and Kusano singled him home. Vroom. Another close call at the plate in favor of the Eagles. 6-2.
Motohiro Shima hit a 2-run homer after that over the fence in left-center to make it 8-2 but I do not have a picture of that.
Rakuten closer Kawagishi finished out the game and that was that. Game heroes were Nagai for pitching 7.2 innings of 2-run ball, and Yamasaki for batting in the go-ahead runs.
This was Rakuten's first "home game" in the Tokyo Dome, so they lined up to thank the 41000 fans or so who showed up.
I took a whole bunch of other photos that don't fit into the story per se, so here they are:
Naoto Watanabe caught a liner
Takumi Kohbe (Kohbe Kohbe Kohbe!)
Backup catcher Naoki Matoba
This weekend, I am going up to Sendai. I hope it doesn't rain.