That's actually not all that unusual this year. At 23-45-5, Orix has the worst record in NPB. They're 18 1/2 games out of first place in the Pacific League which doesn't sound terrible except that they're 9 games out of FIFTH place as well. OK, to be fair, they're actually 9 games out of fourth place since Seibu and Nippon-Ham are tied for fourth with identical records.
Orix went 1-4 between Tuesday and Sunday. Their record might have been worse but their game yesterday was rained out. What made this past week particularly bad for them is that twice an opposing pitcher took a no-hitter late into the game against them.
On Tuesday, Kona Takahashi of the Lions had no-hit the Buffaloes through eight innings before pinch hitter Masahiro Nishino singled to start off the ninth inning. Takahashi stayed in the game and got the last three outs, recording a complete game shutout 2-0 victory. Here's the highlights:
This was second consecutive start for Takahashi where he took a no-hitter past the sixth. On September 1st he held the Marines hitless into the seventh before giving up a hit to Hisanori Yasuda.
On Friday, Orix sent Taisuke Yamaoka while the Chiba Lotte Marines countered with Toshiya Nakamura. Neither pitcher gave up a hit until Lotte's Shohei Katoh singled in the bottom of the sixth. The Marines got their only hits of the game in that inning, converting three hits and walk into two runs. Nakamura kept Orix hitless until Ryoichi Adachi led off the top of the eighth with a double. After the hit Nakamura gave way to newly acquired Hirokazu Sawamura who kept Orix off the board before Naoya Masuda came in for his 23rd save in the ninth. Here are the highlights:
I tuned into each game just in time to see each pitcher give up their first hit. Obviously somehow my starting to watch from 7000 miles away caused both of them to lose the no-hitter (but didn't effect Yasuhiro Ogawa a few weeks back). To make it up to them I thought I'd share cards of them (although I'm sure both of them would have preferred the no-hitter):
|2017 Epoch Lions #10|
|2019 BBM Marines #M26|