Former And Current Dodgers Help MLB All-Stars Edge Japan During Exhibition Win

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It feels good to have some Baseball to recap, even if I was sleeping at the time the game was played. You too may have been in a deep slumber with visions of Dodger Baseball dancing around in your head, but the MLB all-stars were battling the Japan stars at 1:00 in the morning in front of a huge crowd at Koshien Stadium in Nishinomiya. The Japan club mostly consisted of all-star players from the Hashin Tigers, and Yomiuri Giants clubs. The exhibition game kicked off the start of the six game series that begins on Wednesday evening.

The MLB all-stars edged the Japan all-stars by a score of 8-7, thanks to the help of one former Dodger, and two current Dodgers, plus a huge grand slam home run from Evan Longoria. There was a distinct Dodgerness that played a big part in the MLB’s narrow victory.

MLB All-Stars  8 14 1

Japan All-Stars 7 9 0

WP-Capuano

LP-Iwazaki

SV-Beliveau

HR-Longoria-GS-Perez-Fowler

The MLB all-stars got a terrific performance from starting pitcher and old friend Chris Capuano. The former Dodger hurler threw four shutout frames, while allowing just one hit and one walk with three whiffs. Yasiel Puig drove in a run with an RBI single, and Dodger catcher Drew Butera had a crucial pick-off of a runner in the eighth inning that helped stop a Japan rally.

The MLB all-stars scored twice in the fourth frame, four times in the fifth, and one run in each of the sixth and seventh frames.

The offense was highlighted by Tampa Bay slugger Evan Longoria’s monster grand slam home run in the fifth. Kansas City backstop Salvador Perez, and Astro’s center fielder Dexter Fowler each contributed to the MLB’s attack with solo home runs of their own.

The MLB all-stars got on the board first in the top of the fourth inning thanks to our own Yasiel Puig. After consecutive singles to Alcides Escobar, and Robinson Cano, Longoria walked to load the bases. There was a ground ball double play from Carlos Santana that plated the first run. Then Puig’s RBI single to right plated the second run. Puig was 1 for 4 with an RBI single, and a strikeout.

In the top of the fifth, the MLB club got two singles, and a hit by pitch before Longoria hit the slam. That put the MLB club up by a commanding 6-0 score.

But the Japan club would battle back with five earned runs off of right hander Franklin Morales. The Japan team scored first in the bottom of the sixth with a run off of another former Dodger Big Iguana lefty Randy Choate.

Hiroki Uemoto’s RBI double scored Yamato Maeda after he reached on a walk. Japan scored five runs in the bottom of the seventh. A piddly ground ball single, and another bloop single to center put the first two runners aboard to start that furious rally for Japan.

There was a two-run triple by Taishi Ohta, and an RBI single from Hiroki Uemoto. (His second RBI of the game). Then there was a run scoring double from Keisuke Kano, and an RBI grounder brought in the fifth run of the frame.

Japan kept the pressure on the MLB by scoring another run in the bottom of the eighth, although a key pick-off from you guessed it Drew Butera helped squelch Japan’s rally. There was a walk, a stolen base, and a fielding error on Jose Altuve that allowed the seventh run to score for Japan. Japan rallied again in the bottom of the ninth, but Tampa Bay left hander Jeff Beliveau, and Jose Veras of Houston were both able to shut the door.

Seiji Kobayashi led off with a walk. Yamato Maeda singled him to second. Then Beliveau whiffed Kano for the first out. A passed ball and a walk to Hiroki Uemoto loaded the bases with just one out. MLB brings in Veras and he gets Tetsuya Matsumoto to fly out to center. Then Beliveau got Yasuyuki Kataoka and he struck out swinging for the final out. The MLB all-stars hold on to win by a score of 8-7.

The MLB all-stars pounded out eight runs on 14 hits as Chris Capuano was credited with the win. The series officially kicks off Wednesday night at 1 in the morning pacific time with the first game. The MLB all-stars will play the Japanese National Team, also called Samurai Japan at the Kyocera Dome.

Angel’s rookie hurler Matt Shoemaker will get the start for the MLB club. Shoemaker finished his first season with a 16-4 record, and a 3.04 ERA in 20 starts in 2014. You can catch the game live on the MLB network and MLB.tv if you can stay awake.

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