A correction is in order. It wasn't Sakamoto who went down to ni-gun but Tsuruoka. Sakamoto is still the apple of Kanemoto's eye and the latter's lineup selections still continue to be extremely questionable. Kanemoto needs to remember he doesn't know how to manage a baseball team.
Tigers last three results saw two losses and one win - at least there was a win. It involved Akiyama and was a tight game with all the runs coming in the first innings. Tigers really though didn't do much with all their hits; 9 which generated two runs only. This was from a Fukudome 2 run home run. Tigers won this sparsely attended game 2-1. The previous game had seen Messenger struggle and he was overpitched. Watching him in the seventh you could see he was tired and whilst Haraguchi's calls were good Messenger just couldn't deliver. The issue here was that Kanemoto was too slow to react and one can only call his management of the game inept. It was actually quite a see-saw game with the lead changing hands constantly as two poor pitchers struggled to assert some form of control. BayStars eventually took the game 8-6 and here you have to say it was more to do with Tigers ineptness rather than BayStars quality. Still 6 runs from 8 hits was good production. The other game which saw Umeno return was against the Carp. One would have thought that the Carp would have eased off the gas but no. They were quite sharp and Tigers lost this one 6-4. The issue with Umeno is apparently that he struggles to handle the pressure of catching. However, this ignores the obvious thing that if there is pressure what is the rest of the team doing to support him? Allowing second raters like Fujii to undermine him is not good management and with Tigers flatterers and lickspittles are allowed too much influence by poorly chosen and ill-informed management. The choice of the last three managers, Wada, Mayumi and Kanemoto has been little short of scandalous and the complacent support rendered by the parent company to these non-entities is indicative of management style in Japan in general. It is not that fans would object to outsiders. One of the most popular Tigers managers was Hoshino who is revered in Osaka. It all makes it difficult to blog games and report on Tigers - why bother when the idiot at the top is going to make a mess of things? Kanemoto should do the decent thing and retire.