The ‘monster pitcher’ returns to the speed of light.
Chiba Lotte Marines right-hander Hiroki Sasaki (22) will start against the Orix Buffaloes on Tuesday. It will be his first appearance in 48 days since July 24 against the SoftBank Hawks.
Sasaki was removed after throwing 93 pitches in the sixth inning against SoftBank. The Chiba Lotte team announced that he had a torn left lateral muscle and was expected to need two months to return.
It looked like he was effectively out for the season. It was said that it was an aftereffect of his participation in the World Baseball Classic (WBC), but he recovered at a remarkable pace and was back on the mound for the first team in less than two months.
On Aug. 8, Lotte manager Masato Chiba announced that Sasaki had been cleared of a left lateral muscle injury, and that he will start against the Orix on Aug. 10.
Of course, as a starter, it is difficult to make a full start. You start with a set number of pitches and innings. Since it is his first start, it is unlikely that he will pitch until the fifth inning.
Sasaki spent the day at the Marine Stadium indoor training center, where he took fielding drills, played catch, and threw bullpen pitches. The decision to pitch in the first game was made immediately after the second game. Yoshii said, “Throw one inning with the bases loaded.
“No problem,” he said.
Sasaki had previously played catch on two occasions late last month. He started pitching with the catcher sitting on the 29th of last month, and threw 30 pitches in a live pitching session on the 3rd.
Since the loss of ace Sasaki, Chiba Lotte has slipped to 15-1 and 22-22. The gap between them and the first-place Orix has widened to 10 games.
“The team is in a bad situation, and I hope Sasaki can give us a boost,” Yoshii said.
Realistically, even if the top spot in the pennant race is out of reach, a climactic series (postseason) awaits. Ace Sasaki could be the difference maker in fall baseball.안전놀이터
In 13 starts this season, Sasaki is 7-2 with a 1.48 ERA, 130 strikeouts, and a 7.78 winning percentage. After leading the league in ERA, strikeouts, and wins, he lost his lead to injury. He is third in strikeouts in games pitched without a regulation inning. Teammates Atsuki Taneichi (143) and Yoshinobu Yamamoto (Oryx-.