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Greisinger, Giants overcome Swallows

by Jim Allen (Aug 23, 2009)

Seth Greisinger overcame some early inning location issues on Saturday and his teammates pounded out 17 hits as the Giants bounced back from a loss the night before to hammer the Swallows at Jingu Stadium.

Greisinger (11-5) allowed two runs in 7-2/3 innings but had to walk a tightrope through the first three innings of Central League-leading Yomiuri's 7-3 victory over Yakult.

"I had trouble locating everything the first three innings," Greisinger said. "But their timing was a little off and I was able to throw some pitches they weren't expecting."

The 34-year-old gave up a first-inning solo homer to Norichika Aoki and allowed the leadoff man to reach in each of the next three innings, but he also induced three double play balls.

Greisinger allowed eight hits and issued one walk, while striking out four. Although he tied the game with an RBI single, he helped ruin a promising fourth-inning rally by missing a bunt.

With the Giants trailing by a run in the third, batterymate Kazunari Tsuruoka doubled off right-hander Yoshinori Sato (5-7)with one out. Greisinger, who entered the game batting .104 in three seasons here, kept the bat on the ball until he whacked a high breaking ball into left field for his second RBI of the season.

"That was just luck," said the pitcher, who struck out his next three times up. "Eight pitches? Usually, I'm three and out."

Greisinger started a 1-6-3 double play to end the third with the go- ahead run on third base, and he Giants took the lead in the fourth.

Ryota Wakiya and Tsuruoka each plated a run with a one-out, bases- loaded single. As smoothly as the offense was rolling with four singles and a walk in the inning, it ended in a double suicide.

With the bases loaded, Greisinger missed a squeeze bunt on a 1-2 pitch, hanging Shinnosuke Abe out to dry between third and home.

After losing the series opener 9-6 on Friday, it could have been a turning point, but the Giants overcame a leadoff single to Aoki and resumed their advance with a three-run fifth.

Hayato Sakamoto led off with his 15th homer. Yoshiyuki Kamei, who struck out with the bases loaded in the fourth hit a double to the wall in right center that plated one run. Abe followed with a fly to deep center that was good for a sacrifice fly.

Sato allowed six runs on 11 hits and a walk over five innings. The 19- year-old right-hander with a 150-kph fastball struck out five.

"Normally I have good command of my slider," he said. "Tonight I didn't for some reason, and that was that."


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