TUPPER LAKE, NY  –  The Japan Islanders got a first hand taste of the skill in the Empire Baseball League in their 12-3 loss to the Tupper Lake River Pigs. The game seemed to be closely matched early in the game, the Islanders even took a 1-0 lead in the top of the third inning due to defensive miscues by the River Pigs. But just an inning later, the River Pigs tied it up and then another inning later, in the fifth inning, they took a commanding lead and never gave it back.

The starter for the Islanders, Shinya Yamauchi, had a bumpy start. Although there are only two earned runs on his statline, he gave up six hits and three walks in only 4.2 innings pitched. He also gave up a home run. Yamauchi had a hard time throwing first pitch strikes which was a part in why his start was so shaky. 

Relief pitcher Ken Watanabe entered the game to get the final out of the fifth inning for  Yamauchi. But, in the sixth inning, he lost the strike zone, leading to four walks and four earned runs against him. Hiroto Yasuda was solid in his inning of relief, striking out two, walking one, allowing two hits and one run.

Kenta Tanaka had the cleanest night of the Islanders pitchers, going one inning, walking one and striking out two. The final reliever of the night for the Islanders was Kazunori Takebayashi who got roughed up a bit in the eighth inning, giving up four hits including a home run, three earned runs, while striking out one.

The batting was not much better for the Islanders, as they only amassed six total hits throughout the game. Yun Chang Gyu, Ryosuke Ohashi and Taisei Shinmen were the recipients of the teams RBIs. Shinmen had the biggest blast for the Islanders, smacking a solo-home run off of the top of the outfield wall in the top of the ninth inning. 

The Islanders are looking to avoid two straight losses to start their first EBL campaign tomorrow at 7:00 p.m. at Municipal Park in Tupper Lake.

Article by Benjamin Diamond

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