B1 Intermediate US 27 Folder Collection
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the A's from Japan.
And welcome to Major League
Baseball's Japan opening series
on ESPN our telecast is
presented by Edward Jones.
KUHN Bonsoir Yoko So Tokyo a few
more days I'm going to be
speaking a lot more words.
Welcome to Tokyo.
And good evening to you it's
Game 2 of this Japan series as
we open the season with the
Mariners and the athletics Dave
Fleming Eduardo Perez happy to
have you with us here again
tonight from the Tokyo Dome
where last night we saw quite a
scene did we with each euro
celebrated by these people who
just love him so much we don't
know if tonight is gonna be the
last game that he plays but I
think the fans here are going to
treat it that way yes they are
they are going to treat it that
way and the fan in me that has
seen each euro as an opponent as
a competitor and also as a
teammate I also believe this
could be it for him but I'll
tell you why it's because of the
way he goes about his business
before the game today he could
see that there's some emotion.
Speaker 2: Let's see how that
carries over.
Speaker 1: All right.
We will see.
Meanwhile I don't know if it's a
passing of the torch or not but
you say good coochie a great
pitcher from Japan is gonna make
his major league debut tonight
on the mound for the Mariners
What do you expect to see.
Speaker 2: Body control.
It's amazing to see a lot of
these Japanese pitchers when
they go to the United States.
How are they going to prepare.
How they're going to be ready.
This is one guy that has great
balance on the mound but most
importantly he's also has to
control his emotions because
we're in his home country Japan.
We'll see how he does a little
bit later.
Speaker 1: Yeah maybe not as big
of a deal as each role playing
here but it's a huge deal in
this country and it won't be
easy for Kikuchi.
He's facing a very powerful
lineup the A's who were third in
the big leagues and home runs
last year and they hit three on
opening night last night.
Speaker 2: They do and that's
one thing they do they can hit
the long ball you get runners on
base that's one thing that they
look for and it's from line to
line.
That's the most impressive part
about it watching Chapman
yesterday was impressive Davis.
These guys understand how to
understand how to elevate the
baseball.
Let's see if they'll understand
Kikuchi cutter.
Speaker 1: So he's been a
terrific way to start this
season and we've got game 2 of
the MLB season here from Tokyo.
Coming up next.
A gorgeous scene high up above
the Tokyo Dome here in the
world's biggest city and one of
the world's great cities we get
ready for Game 2 of the MLB
season.
The Japan series here from
Tokyo.
Speaker 2: And as the A's take
the field the Mariners coming up
they are the road team for both
of these games.
Here is what their lineup looks
like.
Eduardo they scored nine runs
last night on opening night so
why not keep it mostly the same.
Speaker 1: Absolutely.
Gordon's been getting on base.
We saw it yesterday.
Speaker 2: Edwin Encarnacion
gets it going early on in the
season.
This is a guy that can carry a
team.
Speaker 1: With his bat and they
will face Marco Estrada who has
been around for a long time.
Twelve major league seasons or
at least parts of them making
his Oakland debut here tonight.
And Estrada's first pitch up the
season 2 D Gordon.
Missed tie with our home plate
umpire Bill Wilkie behind the
plate tonight.
Speaker 2: There was a strike
from Estrada who was signed by
Oakland in the offseason Eduardo
the A's.
We know they had lots of
questions about their starting
rotation.
Speaker 1: And he is slotted in
as the number two at least as of
now.
Coming off what was probably his
worst major league season last
year with the Blue Jays.
That is again one thing that he
has spells.
If this guy is healthy.
Speaker 2: He is able.
He is going to be able to help
the athletics early on in spring
training got her with his back.
Speaker 1: It's really slowed
down the development he hasn't
pitched in the last two weeks.
So there is a major question
about how long he can go how
effective he can be D.
Gordon went after that high
pitch from Estrada and hit a
foul ball out of play and the
key to success is going to be.
This change.
Everybody talks about it.
It's a pitch that he'll throw
any count he'll elevate the
fastball especially late in
counts when he's ahead.
Andy Gordon who had a big impact
for the Mariners in last night's
game.
Almost like he was showing a
bunt even with two strikes.
The count is now 2 and 2.
Speaker 2: Well we don't want
make too much about it Eduardo
because it's Game 2 of one
hundred and sixty two.
We're very early but the A's are
clearly a contender for the
division for a World Series.
Speaker 1: Gordon goes down
swinging.
I think that was the Marco's
strategy.
Speaker 2: Jeff it's a good
start for him each year.
Speaker 1: Oh wait.
Does Seattle duck out.
He's ninth in the batting order.
We'll talk plenty about each row
Suzuki tonight.
Could be playing could be the
final game of his extraordinary
professional career nine seasons
here in Japan and 19 years if
you count this one as a big
leaguer going to the Hall of
Fame.
You saw the starting pitcher
finished with his warm ups as
well you say Kikuchi he'll make
his major league debut tonight
as Mitch Hannigan goes after the
very first pitch from Estrada
Sky's run up against the roof of
the Tokyo Dome how to play foul
ball strike one kind of get
ahead of the poor he throws that
changeup one thing that right
handed hitters do have an
advantage against Marco Estrada.
This is where Estrada has now
come back and start throwing a
little bit more curve balls and
I expect to see that this season
the Oakland Athletics like to
get more out of their pitchers
when they bring them in from
other organizations I think that
curve ball is gonna be used
heavily.
And we'll try to show you some
of the defensive alignments the
A's will be pretty aggressive
shifting on the pull side for
the right handed hitting Mitch
manager who goes after the
second one and fouls that one
out of play it's quickly 0 and 2
I just want to go back to the
big picture point John the A's
have power right they have
defense they have a bullpen that
could be one of the very best in
the game the biggest question by
far for Oakland by far is their
starting rotation and they need
performance from a lot of guys
who didn't necessarily have
great performance last year and
I think Estrada is near the top
of that list.
Now doesn't that sound like the
Oakland Athletics last season
going into the season most of
their starters were hurt a lot
of question marks when it came
to the rotation yes they had
Sean Renard early on before he
got hurt.
But this is a guy that.
This is a team right now that
has to try to figure out.
How they can.
Bridgette.
Speaker 2: Brett Anderson's had
a hard time staying healthy
Frankie montages really doesn't
have much experience at all.
Annika rip that won a pair of
ball inside the foul line toward
the corner.
Mitch Hannigan who was mostly
quiet in last night's game as
his teammates came to life with
the bats on opening night
Hannigan has the extra base hit
a one out double shenanigan he
became the star of the Mariners
last year it looked like that
changeup it was not a great one
Hannigan was right on it he was
on what fastball up one of the
memos that Marco Estrada's once
he shows you up and you lay off
it.
Then you have to be careful with
the combo I've got to learn how
to say that in Japanese that
change.
Speaker 1: Well you just give us
a hint just give us a few more
days here and where we might do
the whole broadcast in Japanese.
You know what we're trying to
learn as much as we can.
Jay Bruce take strike one from
the right hander.
Many of the baseball terms are
basically English words with a
little flair.
Not all.
But here in Japan they have
adopted many baseball terms that
they've just sort of used the
English words in their language.
So it could be that changeup is
one of those.
Bruce pops one way up there.
Speaker 2: With that roof not
totally routine.
One gold Glover calls off
another.
Speaker 1: That's a good problem
to have when he got to a gold
Glover's coming together.
Never knew that gold trumps
platinum but it did right in
this case it did.
That also was a Gold Glove
winner at first base that
Chapman was the platinum Glove
winner in the American League
last year and by almost every
metric you could find was the
best defensive player in the big
leagues last season.
So too down for the designated
hitter Edwin Encarnacion.
Yeah.
You were right.
Gold trumped.
Platinum.
At least gold was louder.
Encarnacion who had I thought a
couple really nice at bats in
last night's game drew a couple
walks that were part of mariners
rallies.
He goes after the first pitch.
That's Marco Estrada.
That's what he does he has to be
able to get ahead it's not an
overpowering fastball.
He'll pitch off that change up
right handed hitters will do.
And we'll see that pitch a lot
better than the left handed
hitters.
Reason being it will not run
away from them.
That's what comes into their
battle.
And a guy who's got good speed.
He's the runner at second chance
for the Mariners to get ahead.
That's game too.
Speaker 2: And he did go forward
apparently.
That's the pitch I'm talking
about the curve ball has to be
able to throw it effectively.
To right handed hitters has to
up the percentage.
I guarantee you if he stays
healthy all season that
percentage of the curve ball
will be a lot higher than it's
been in the past.
Work there Encarnacion couldn't
hold up Lance Barksdale our
first base umpire.
Said it was a swing and now it's
own 2.
Speaker 1: We had 16 runs in
last night's game.
The Tokyo Dome by dimensions is
a representative ballpark.
It would fit in in the Major
Leagues 329 down the lines 400
straight away center field.
But this ballpark plays small it
does.
There's not a lot of happens
here.
It's different for the hitters
and also for the outfielders.
Fastball Encarnacion laid off.
Almost the same sequence that we
saw against manager went up
elevated one to count.
You want change up to handle.
Let's see how he makes the
adjustment or because change up
here out of the zone.
Josh factly as the catcher
tonight for Oakland.
Speaker 2: Giving the signs 1 2
Encarnacion pops Allen up.
I liked that one with the
fastball.
Speaker 1: And Olson will catch
another pop up look it up at
that roof.
You say Kikuchi.
Big news here in Tokyo makes his
major league debut next.
MLB at home.
He's presented by flown A's
allergy relief experience 24
hour all in one allergy relief
or your money back.
Major League Baseball's Japan
opening series on ESPN is
presented by Edward Jones
because understanding what's
important.
Matters.
Speaker 2: Clearly tonight we've
got a story that matters here to
the people of Tokyo Japan and
his great baseball country you
say.
Kikuchi.
After years of starring in the
MVP professional league here in
Japan has signed a big major
league contract to the off
season with the Mariners tonight
is his major league debut and
it's sort of ironic that he
finally makes his way to the big
leagues and then comes back home
but to pitch for the first time
in a Seattle uniform.
Speaker 1: Absolutely in the
nose.
This is something you can't
explain right now.
But what a moment for you say
the future to be able to take
the field here in the Tokyo Dome
place where the Tokyo giants of
February giants are known as the
Yankees.
Of Japan.
Speaker 2: The lineup that
Kikuchi will face here tonight
is a powerful one the A's were
third in big league baseball
hitting home runs last year hit
three on opening night last
night showed off a lot of that
power Marcus simian Matt Chapman
Steven biscotti Chris Davis who
had a home run on opening day
for the fourth straight year he
has already set on Oakland and
an A's franchise record for most
opening day home runs.
Speaker 1: Guess how many
opening days he's played with
the A's franchise that before
and he's got four of them.
So be careful against Chris
Davis.
First things first Marcus
Simeon.
At the first pitch of his big
league career is strike one from
the coochie.
Speaker 2: And the ovation that
he got when he took the field
was just about as robust as the
one that each guy did.
This is the only appearances
made where each row had played
already three games coming into
this one.
Speaker 1: But two exhibition
ones yesterday.
So what can we expect to see
from this young left hander.
Again violence on the mound.
Watch the double pump and most
importantly he'll use both sides
of the plate.
Good velocity not afraid to use
the fastball.
Speaker 2: And the composure
that he has on the mound.
He's not panic.
Even when runners are on base.
And.
He figure that he might have a
little bit of advantage Bob
Melvin the A's manager even
talked about it where the A's
have not seen him not on a
cactus league game not in a
regular season game obviously.
Speaker 1: Semi and behind the
gal 1 2 and there's that big
breaking ball.
He took it.
Good pitch Mrs. metal try to get
a little bit of the chase right
there.
Now let's see if you get tax
inside.
Due to.
His high three and too high but
effective seven right there off
balance a little bit you see him
falling back.
Opens up.
Middle outer part of the plate.
For Kikuchi to attack.
Well you know that he does not
want to walk the first big
league hitter that he faces.
Broke out three to Simeon just
kind of squibs one on this slow
turf Kikuchi makes a pretty darn
athletic play.
Picked it up and got to first
base ahead of Simeon and athlete
to it also.
OK we're building our scouting
report on this guy gets off the
mound well.
That was pretty impressive the
ball dies on this turf this is
an artificial surface it's got
the field turf style artificial
grass that we see at Tropicana
Field in St. Pete but it's
longer and slower.
It is and it was just put in
March 7.
Off.
The end of the.
Battle.
To raise the first head the
driver didn't even use his glove
bare handed right there.
Good focus.
With all that English on that
baseball.
Take that smile.
Maybe in some ways it's the
perfect.
First.
Result for a big league career.
Have to get off the mound.
Get a little sweat going right
away.
It does not get easy though
against his ace lineup Matt
Chapman who swung the bat very
well last night his first at bat
tonight.
Take strike one.
Oh he gets that pitch.
He'll start trying to open up
the zone a little bit more
Narvaez doing a great job and
worked on it.
During the off season and then
spring training on his framing.
Narvaez a new Mariner as so many
are this roster is had so much
turnover and he is going to
catch that every day.
The position won't allow that
but he's going to catch a lot.
For Scott services club.
How he got the call there it's
wanted to.
What.
We saw what he did with
something he puts.
Inside.
Here so far has gone away.
With Captain.
Chapman is a good opposite field
hitter he's got power to the
opposite side he had all run to
right field last night he's not
getting it all right here he
goes down swinging.
Two down.
Impressive Hatch really are
blessed with one out of the zone
number twenty appears to be
right there on strike and then
too late for captain to make the
adjustment a little slider you
go in the dirt.
Switches baseball.
With the home plate umpire
Milwaukee.
Just a brief moment but a cool
little shot there Matt Chapman
you know that the hitters are
gonna come back to the dugout
and share whatever.
They have against the guy that
they have never seen before.
Same high school as show hey oh
Tony a baseball powerhouse.
Kikuchi who was a star in high
school in fact he strongly
considered there has never been
a player to go straight from
high school here in Japan to
sign in the major leagues with a
major league organization he
considered it trying to become
that first guy.
Decided against it signed with
say boob became a star here in
Japan and at 27 years old he's
made the leap.
But he has dreamed about this
day for a long time.
Find out what's more impressive.
And going to school with Tommy.
Or.
Chapman and they're not all
going the same high school and
winning platinum of course.
Yes very impressive.
You are right.
I don't believe that kid and
autonomy overlapped.
And Chapman and our Renato did.
Did they not for a year for a
year.
I can't say I'm totally up on my
Japanese high school baseball
history.
Check swing by biscotti.
He almost went no swing though
says Lance Barksdale.
To do.
This his work it's fun now
because you haven't faced.
This picture before.
Hides the ball well you see
where it brings it back almost
out of his ear.
Can't pick it up now does it go
up and elevate.
He's got the little hesitation
the great balance that you
talked about right from the
start.
And hiding the ball every hitter
who phases him that's maybe the
first thing you hear about is
how he hides the ball.
To do.
Outside.
The strike zone in the Japanese
leagues by rulebook is actually
a little bit wider than the
major league strike zone I would
say the OK you have more
experience.
Actually it basically depends.
Scotty skies one and each row is
gonna get a chance to make a
play in right field.
And why not.
Speaker 2: What a debut.
USA Kikuchi.
And.
Leaning on the all time great
each year all.
To get that third down.
Speaker 1: She I think wants to
salute each euro one ending in
the books.
No score here from Tokyo.
You wouldn't accept an
incomplete job from anyone else.
Speaker 2: And why accept it
from your allergy pills flown is
sentenced nothing stronger
nothing gentler.
Nothing lasts longer flow days
since a missed 24 hour non
drowsy allergy relief.
Speaker 1: Major League
Baseball's Japan opening series
on ESPN presented by Edward
Jones is brought to you by
Geico.
Speaker 2: Fifteen minutes could
save you 15 percent or more on
car insurance.
Well I thought about making the
guy sitting to my left read our
billboard copy but I decided
against it because he is our
guest.
Speaker 1: One of the all time
greats we've been saying that
about he drove these last few
days.
I think we could say it about
Ken Griffey Junior who is here
on this trip with the Mariners
and the A's in Japan and has
come up to say hi to us here in
the broadcast booth.
We are underway.
Speaker 2: Domingo Santana it
sounds loud in the Tokyo Dome
doesn't it.
Yes it does.
I know it came up pretty well
short of the center field wall
but it always sounds great here.
Speaker 1: But it's supposed to
be you know as a hitter you want
that sound.
Yeah but when you're playing you
know you don't want that sound.
Let's get this now as a hitter.
You want it as a den.
Speaker 2: I mean how much of
that did you.
Did you use those cues could you
hear when you were in center
field was that part of how you
were a 10 time Gold Glove winner
out there.
No I just watched people how
they came out the box.
OK if you.
Like.
Dave Henderson when he hit it
and you saw his hands like this
don't run.
It's not coming back.
But if you see a guy hit it and
start running you know he's got
a chance.
So that's you know a little
monitoring right there watching
these guys see what they do and
it's tough when you have a
little guy with a little pop and
he hits it but he runs like that
all the time.
You know when Ricky hits it you
know he start grabbing his
collar and you know don't go.
Speaker 1: Hey don't embarrass
yourself.
You've had Ricky Henderson here
with you on this trip has you've
been hanging out with Ricky.
Good.
I mean.
Speaker 2: He owes me a
basketball game.
He got me when I was twelve and
has yet to let me redeem myself.
But you know I'm bringing some
shorts this year to the Hall of
Fame get some shorts and the man
shorts and we gonna go wait it's
like.
We're talking the inside game
outside game here.
Oh he made it like a three
pointer jump in his car and
drove off.
Speaker 1: When you were twelve.
Yes hi I'm still traumatized.
Ken Griffey Jr. and you're with
us here from Tokyo.
We could rattle off all the
accolades 630 home runs the Hall
of Fame all the all stars the
MVP and whatnot.
Well your time with the Mariners
now you're back around the
Mariners a lot.
You've seen this ballclub.
What's it been like being around
this year's version of the
Seattle Mariners.
Speaker 2: I think you know for
us it's just being consistent.
I think.
You know just like everybody
else you have a chance if you
stay healthy and stay
consistent.
You know the pitching is
definitely always the key to
winning a championship and if
the guys can stay healthy stay
consistent.
You know we're going to surprise
people.
You had a typical.
Speaker 1: Your typical junior
swing which was a little bit of
elevate what he called call
square square extension
elevation extension elevation.
You are ahead of your time.
Speaker 2: Yeah.
No no no.
My point was really flat.
But after getting through the
zone I was able to to to
showcase.
The.
Swing.
Speaker 1: Showcase.
Yeah.
Everybody's trying to lift and
elevate.
Now we were here in those launch
jangled terms all over the place
would you have used all the
technology that these guys have
at their disposal.
Oh no.
You know I grew up where you hit
line drives line drives are
going to get you paid if it
happens to go out the ballpark
it goes at the ballpark.
But I tell everybody that long
walk back to the dugout.
It.
Was a smash.
Jim Bakker was swinging the bat
very well here and I want to
leave Tokyo.
A great opening night last night
and gets it to our base in here.
But that long walk back to the
dugout after striking out and
you got to put your helmet.
In helmet rack.
Speaker 2: Your back into that
bat you walk past your teammates
and just look at Archie it's
changed because they don't even
care.
No more like it's just an out
which to us.
There's such things as a thing
called Productive out.
If I can get a pitcher to throw
eight nine 10 pitches and I come
back.
I'm striking out.
Nobody says anything.
I battled.
But when you're in there for
four pitches and.
You come back.
That's not.
Speaker 1: When your team.
You know to me that's not doing
your team.
Sorry he thought he talked about
line drives.
Yeah I'll tell you this.
In 1976 he had that one right
back at me.
Speaker 2: Hit me right in the
fore head and I went crying to
my mom during the game at
Riverfront Stadium.
This was in the tunnels of the
waterfront stadium.
I went I got on that elevator
stood up junior hit me and she
goes where do you go Why.
So we hit a line drive right by
God said get back down there son
what are you talking about.
Get back down there.
Speaker 1: You have to have
known each other since you were
how old.
Speaker 2: Oh 5 up for five.
Speaker 1: That's pretty
amazing.
Yeah.
Grown up around I read those
great reds teams in that Reds
clubhouse and you two were pals.
Yeah.
I'm still scared and I'm.
Intimidated asking him to help
me.
I just slide your mom look at
him like Hey how you doing.
Go about my business.
Not that good.
Yeah.
Look at the good thing about.
Growing up in that environment
was.
We were only allowed in the
clubhouse if the team won.
But the team didn't win.
We weren't allowed in the
clubhouse.
Good thing is they won a lot.
You pick the right team to be
hanging around.
Oh yeah.
And you know we would be mad at
our dad.
When they lost that drive home.
It's like you know when you do
something in Little League and
your dad drives you home.
Well it's the opposite.
Why did you lose.
I can't believe I didn't hit
right.
Yeah I know I was caught
stealing Yeah.
So.
Yeah that struck out in Puerto
Rico last time and I grabbed it
back and I looked down and said
You're not going to hit him.
He just looked at me.
He sent me home the next day.
You were probably right.
That's the thing.
Speaker 2: I was like Yeah he's
like come get him send him home.
Now we saw you last night here.
Taking on a little different
role didn't we.
You were you were down on the
photographer as well taking some
shots with what looks to be a
very serious camera.
Yeah.
I.
Do a little something.
So there's this like a hobby or
learning.
You know I got friends.
You know Scott Clark.
Phil.
Ben.
You know all these guys helped
me you know from that one
sounded good and looks good.
It is gone.
My goodness.
Bring that down.
You're the analyst for.
Oh.
Speaker 1: Guess what.
He got a pitch he can handle.
He deposited it nicely.
Could you tell.
Once he hit it Yeah he knew it
was gone.
Did you see him move.
Speaker 2: Yeah.
You wouldn't have moved out
there I can guarantee you that
look the left field is still in
the same spot.
Speaker 1: Ryan Healy goes deep.
Guess who's coming up.
Speaker 2: Now.
I'm curious ask about your
perspective.
You were on the third base side
of the dugout with the camera.
Well what did you see from the
trail yesterday.
Your.
Speaker 1: Just a little
pressing.
You know.
He's here in his home country.
You know it's opening series.
Speaker 2: You know just one.
This place is going to go crazy
when he gets a hit.
I think that's what everybody's
been waiting on.
I know we have.
He has.
But you know all it takes.
Is one good swing.
To get somebody locked in.
Is.
Get one here.
Yes he should.
OK.
Because then I could be real
happy.
Speaker 1: And I and I but more
than forty five thousand people
in the stadium will too.
So this is you know it's one of
those things.
You know you've got a guy who's.
You know.
Played.
Here for seven years eight
years.
Comes to the States.
Speaker 2: 18 major league
seasons.
I mean this is this is great.
I mean this is what.
Why we come over here and they
come over.
To visit us the players.
Doesn't matter how big you are.
Speaker 1: Guys can play.
Well we know that a bit each
year oh Bill Wilkie gives a
strike to Marco Estrada.
One of the true all time greats.
He'll join you in Coopers town
as soon as he's finished.
It'll be five years from.
Speaker 2: He'll be there with
you.
Perhaps Alan.
Is the enemy of each row and
that first at bat.
And so the side is retired out.
Junior are you able to stick
with us for another half inning
came back a few more minutes.
OK.
All right.
We might even show a few of your
photographs from last night.
Oh baby.
We'll see.
Absolutely.
Good.
Fight back here in Tokyo Ken
Griffey Jr. is with us.
And you didn't take that photo
obviously but in that photo
right.
What did we just see.
Well you saw the greatest team
assembled.
And it's not the guys standing
up.
It's the gas line.
Yes.
They couldn't beat us.
Did they have a beat.
I think I hit that one.
Yes.
Have they all beat us now ever
since they went to World
Championships and they never
beat us two old pals telling
stories from the time they were
five years old Chris Davis and
the A's coming up here on the
bottom of the second.
Speaker 1: Mariners with that
two run home run from Ryan
Healy.
You've taken it to nothing lead
Ken Griffey junior nice enough
to give us another few minutes.
Thought it was really cool you
know growing up in that.
Generation and.
Speaker 2: In that atmosphere in
Cincinnati five of us won in the
first round.
Twelve of us.
Signed professionally.
I thought you know the
environment that.
Speaker 1: Was created five of
you like five of us kids kids
from our own team.
Wow.
Speaker 2: And I thought you
know that's the cool part about
it.
You had me Junior that had
passed through there.
Again.
Brian McCrae also Junior which
won one one myself and just.
Continued to.
Produce.
Player after player and.
The.
Unity was great.
To this day we still have a
mutual respect for each other.
Well.
How about that one.
There we go.
Look at that hair.
It's.
Good.
Right there.
What happened.
When did they talk about now.
What happened now.
Yeah.
Got great.
I think you should grow it back.
I think you should come back.
Next year.
You should have that.
That would be an entrance on
opening day but a lot of things
and that's not what.
You say Kikuchi one of the new
Mariners but a lot of turnover
on this team.
Speaker 1: Kikuchi with a
terrific first impression what
are your thoughts on what you
have.
Speaker 2: Have you had a chance
to watch it during spring
training at all or is this your
first day.
This is my first chance.
Speaker 1: I'm like everybody
else you know.
I couldn't wait for him to get
out there.
The anticipation from.
Me in the second day starter.
You think that you heard about
him and read it and got a chance
to look at some video.
So this is.
Speaker 2: This has been good.
He seems like a very confident
young man.
Speaker 1: The way he's carried
himself these last few days with
all the attention the camera
flashes for a guy who maybe as
he's used to it but maybe not
quite at the level of each row
yet he looks real confident.
He's a pro. Yeah.
And I think that most people
think that is different from
being you know from Japanese to
to America.
He is a pro. He knows what he
has to do to get his body right
his mind right and get ready to
to go out there every fifth day.
Speaker 2: That is a good point.
I mean the pressure on these
guys who play here that's ball.
Davis becomes the first base
runner very brand new major
league career.
Speaker 1: This guy's been in
the spotlight since he was 15
years old.
Speaker 2: The one thing that
USA has been able to do is use
both sides of play well.
He'll pitch.
With the off speed pitch when
he's behind in the count he's
not afraid he's shown the
lettuces him already and he's
not afraid right there to go
after guys with some against
Chris Davis attack him 3 1
fastball you missed it.
Okay.
I'm going.
Speaker 1: Here's Chad Pindar of
Oakland Kikuchi Mrs. high ball
one.
Am I right.
You were still very young.
Major Leaguer were you not when
you first came to Japan to play
with one of those all star
teams.
I was 20 20 years old 20 years
old.
I don't know maybe it's just me
but I've seen you these last few
days with so many folks smile on
your face taken pictures.
I mean it seems like you really
enjoy being here.
Speaker 2: Yeah I mean this is a
great place.
Anytime you can come to the
ballpark it's always good.
It's a place that you know.
For us is home.
And.
You know this is like I said
it's.
Speaker 1: Opening Day opening
series.
We get a chance to watch two
guys that were born in Japan
play at home.
The people here the battle of
the bands I mean what else.
You want.
What else can you add.
I agree.
We have had such a terrific time
here.
I'm sorry to see it come to an
end actually.
I know we've got to get back and
get ready for the start of the
full major league season.
Speaker 2: But this has been
just a great experience for all
of us.
And.
I'm glad that.
Speaker 1: MLB does it.
I mean I know it's not totally
easy for the players because you
get out of your routine you fly
a long way you come back play a
couple more practice games get
right back into the season and
it can be a little jarring I
think when you're trying to ease
your way into the regular
season.
But I'm glad that Major League
Baseball does it.
I mean anytime you can get some.
Some a meaningful at bats.
And then you have a little
break.
Where you can work on some
things if you need to.
If you don't you just carry on
to what you've been doing.
But.
You know right now you know.
The first two days.
You know trying to get some at
bats and timing home.
Play yesterday and today you get
to go home after a.
Workout workout to game start
the season.
I'm curious to find out
especially in today's game where
now it's the norm a lot of
shifting going on.
How would.
You have played.
Defensive.
Standpoint when it comes to the
infield.
To play straight away.
You would say that's just me.
You asked me how I play me.
Yeah I think I say straight
away.
You didn't have me.
Come on now.
Come on.
Speaker 2: A shift his
background ball.
Right.
We talk about hitting line
drives.
OK.
What have you got that line
drive in that hole.
Well how many times do you see
that 30 Hopper go where the
middle fit infielders.
Bump each other and you base it
and you never even have the
ability to hit the ground ball
the other way.
I went trying to hit it on the
ground.
There we go.
I'm trying to hit land right.
OK.
Now don't you think your
opponents if you had hit a few
ground balls that they would
have been just fine with that.
Speaker 1: I just hit them if
you want.
OK.
That's one way to beat the
shift.
You can't put enough people in
them seats.
You can put.
Speaker 2: The bullpen.
Everybody spread out.
And guess what.
Being able to get.
I'm not looking at the
infielders.
At defense.
Look at the defense right now
and you hear the losing odds
here in Japan because they don't
see a lot of the shifting more
complete players here where they
use the entire field they hit
behind the runners a lot of hit
and run going on a lot of
bunting.
Major League Baseball.
This is what.
We're used to playing.
They're not used to that
yesterday.
You know.
Third baseman out of position
makes a bad throw.
Right there.
You know some of these guys have
not been in that position where
they're playing now.
So that's tough.
Speaker 1: Same deal here.
You got Ryan Healy all the way
over on the right basically
playing second base like a deep
second base.
Speaker 2: You can see him on
the right side there.
You know it's just one of those
things that that.
That happens.
I mean.
You know if you're looking to
hit a ground ball.
You know.
Through the infield.
Now I'm trying to get a nice
solid line drive matter where
the where the defense is at.
Matt Olsen very good young
hitter facing Kikuchi for the
first time takes high four ball
one Ken Griffey Jr. is with us.
Speaker 1: All time great
Mariner all time great player
hall of famer you were the
closest to unanimous I believe
until now we finally have a
fully unanimous 100 percent.
Hall of Famer Mariano Rivera is
going in this summer.
Speaker 2: Yeah we do.
And you know it's one of those
things is gonna happen it is
bound to happen.
You know I've known Mo.
That one.
Wow.
Gordon Nice away from his knees.
So I.
Pointed to.
It.
You know you got a.
Speaker 1: Cheater coming up
next.
And.
So it's going to be.
You know.
Like that's.
What.
The Yankees have to have.
We just have the rest of us now.
Speaker 2: But you know is truly
deserve for Mo.
And.
So I'm excited for what he got
to say.
He better mention me in his
speech.
No I'm just kidding.
You know I'm excited for him I
mean I'm excited for all the
guys coming in.
You know especially Edgar who's
had to wait for so long.
Yep.
This is gonna be great.
Speaker 1: And it is true the
Yankees do have more than their
fair share it seems like.
But did that for a franchise
that has not been around for
nearly as long your Mariners
have such a history of great
players superstar players.
I mean you're at the top of the
list but between Edgar and Randy
Jaime we could go down a long
list of guys pretty storied
history.
You.
Track.
You know we got some guys that.
Speaker 2: You know like to play
baseball like to get after it
and you know that's all you
want.
You want guys that have a common
goal and that's to go out there
and play as hard as they can
each and every day give you 100
percent of what they have that
day because there's gonna be
days.
Hundred sixty two.
You may have it all.
You know if you go out there and
you battle guys respect it.
Tell you what a couple of years
ago you did a game with Rick
Sutcliffe.
And I think John Crombie was in.
Speaker 1: Seattle.
This year I'll be there August
26 coming on.
Speaker 2: Come on.
You're trying to move better
right now.
Come on.
Do.
You want first class or I might
come find Coach.
Speaker 1: I'll bring first.
Okay go.
That's what I'm talking about.
Well we would love to have you
they'd be great Mariners fans I
have to think are itching for a
team to get back to the
postseason a team to be in
contention.
Mr. great fan base up there.
Speaker 2: Oh yeah.
They're there.
They are wild when it comes to
baseball.
I mean you know.
We've.
Been on the backburner a couple
of years but I think that you
know over the next couple of
years we're gonna be I think
that's the one thing you need to
be back in front of football and
soccer.
Even though I like sports you
know I grew up playing baseball
so I'm you know I'm a diehard
baseball fan so anytime that I
get my baseball hat a good.
Another strikeout for Taguchi is
it time for you to go.
Speaker 1: Or do you want do you
want to go or you want to stay
stay.
Speaker 2: I got one more.
More and one more junior stays
with us after this.
Speaker 1: To nothing mariners
with the lead as we go to any
number three Dave Fleming
Roberto Perez and Ken Griffey
Junior here from the Tokyo Dome.
D Gordon not giving us a whole
lot of time to pump him up or
Junior up he swings the first
pitch and pops up I tell the new
guys when they come and make
their major league debut or
first few games take a few
pitches let us we want to pump
you up tell it a little
something about him taking a
pitch.
Did they tell you to swing at
the ceremonial first pitch.
Yeah that is Japanese custom.
Speaker 2: You have to swing.
Well see I was gonna set him up.
That's why you he was.
Speaker 1: Swinging on at that
time and money.
The next pitch out at Heartland.
I love it.
Mitch Hannigan has turned into a
heck of a player had any.
Yes.
He is.
He is to me.
He's the star.
The Mariners have a lot of
talent still on this team but
he's the guy who seems to me to
be at least have the potential
to be the biggest star.
Speaker 2: He's a good one.
I mean you know they've got some
guys that.
Are going to shock you.
I mean you know you've got J who
can hit you get.
Edwin you got D.
I mean you've got some guys
that.
I didn't realize Santana was
that strong.
Tony.
He was swinging the right and
swinging the left hit to right.
Speaker 1: He was looking to the
left.
The ball went over the fence the
right field.
And one thing I've noticed so
far seven as.
You look out at seven outs have
been made.
Speaker 2: By the Seattle
Mariners.
And I think that number is going
to stay at seven don't you.
That is not out.
It's out of here.
Mitch Hannigan with his first
home run of the year three
nothing mariners.
In this ballpark is just not the
right recipe for Marco Estrada
which is a fly ball hitter.
Out of those seven outs five of
them have been in the infield
pop ups.
Speaker 1: No ground ball so
far.
The two home runs.
And.
No doubters.
First Ryan Healy and now Mitch
Hannigan.
Speaker 2: Joining the party
yesterday 1 0 for the night.
Speaker 1: I'm not sure that any
of these hitters are gonna want
to leave the Tokyo Dome and it's
a good place to hit.
Yes it is.
J Bruce who you just mentioned
is a guy who you think.
Has a chance to have a big year
took a big cut.
To center field Romo and Larry
Cano under it.
Two down.
And we keep hearing about all
the young talent that the
Mariners now have in admire.
Maybe a couple of years from
seeing those guys regularly but
it does sound like that year old
team has a lot of young talent
in the minor leagues growing.
I mean you know everybody needs
to.
Sometime.
Speaker 2: Take a step back and
look at what they have but these
guys have you know the guys that
are up here and the guys that
will be here shortly our guys
that you can build on.
Here's Encarnacion with all of
his power.
Mitch Hannigan a great deal from
the Arizona Diamondbacks.
Had the breakout year last year
and seems to be well on his way.
Everything we heard from Scott
service was Watch out for
Hanukkah.
I mean they they just loved how
he looked all spring training
long.
3 and 0.
Speaker 1: Again.
Estrada was able to get out in
the first inning against the
right handed hitters with the
curve ball needs to throw that a
lot more.
You do kind of feel for a guy
who.
He made two starts in the Cactus
League too.
That's it.
And now here he's pitching in
the game that counts.
Encarnacion swinging away and
fouls that one out of play.
Speaker 2: We wanted to try to
get on one side and he's missing
out over the plate.
Now you know the thing is about.
You know having a a pitcher
who's a fly ball pitcher you've
got to make him get him down.
Because he lives right at that
area where you can pop the ball
up and that's what happens.
Is you can you get the guy down.
You can hit it out.
You leave him up there and.
You know.
He's going to get those pop ups.
You know especially.
Here.
Where the ball can't care you
just want to say I get him down
three four or five inches and
that ball goes a long way.
But if he can stay up top you
know there's gonna be a lot of
pop up that you know would you
say there's four right now pop
up side five.
You know.
Just let him get it down.
Just make him get him down and
then you can do some damage.
Here's Domingo Santana who did a
lot of damage last night.
On opening night grand slam the
first of his career hit 30 home
runs a couple of years ago.
Speaker 1: First year in
Seattle.
Speaker 2: He's had the means to
throw that ball up.
Now he's he's you know.
Belt high.
Which is that area where you're
like.
I've got to get it.
And he's just great above the
belt.
Speaker 1: The game has been
we've talked a lot about how the
game has evolved.
The game has become so much
about the home run ball.
And the Mariners last year were
below average they were middle
of the pack and a little bit
below that even in terms of team
home runs.
This year's team looks like
maybe it's the Tokyo Dome it's
two games but.
Speaker 2: Looks like that.
That ranking might climb.
Yeah but do you still want to
get guys on base.
Yeah I think that you know when
you can put pressure on
defensive and make the pitcher
you know think about some mouth
you know it makes it a little
easier as a hitter.
You know we have one guy on.
You know he's like OK you have
two guys on three guys.
Now he can afford to make that
mistake.
And.
That's what the game is about is
trying to make the defense put
pressure on the defense that
three run homer.
That that.
One hit well it's going to short
hop the wall and cross the aisle
not known as the fastest guy on
the Mariners.
Speaker 1: Will stop at third.
It's a two hour double for
Domingo Santana.
You put pressure on the defense.
Speaker 2: You can do some work
two out hits.
Great guy hits a three run
homer.
The pitch has already got.
OK.
And I'll be on I can go to work
now.
You know.
But.
You.
Guys on and.
Have that carousels keep going.
You know we're happy as hitters.
Speaker 1: How much do the
Mariners players whether it's in
the Cactus League if you make a
visit for a while or whatever if
you come to Seattle to watch how
much the guys ask you hey look
at my swinger.
Speaker 2: We talk all the time.
Yeah I think you know the guys
know that I'm a.
Open source of information.
I don't know.
You know I got plenty of people
that I can call in and ask
questions because hitting is not
about you know my way your way.
It's about trying to get the
best out of your ability.
A quick visit to the mound your
left.
You were a left handed hitter.
Right now lefties have struggled
against Estrada.
They have not gotten a hit yet
righties have done all the
damage.
What are you looking for here.
He's gonna throw to me.
Speaker 1: Sinker slider.
I gotta make him get the ball
down.
You're going to try to run the
fastball.
Just keep it built high.
You know.
A little bit above the belt and
stay there.
I've got to get him to get the
ball down.
Or I can basically drop the head
on it.
Speaker 2: The trend has held up
in this game.
Right handed hitters five for
six against Estrada lefties now
0 4 7.
After that pop up but another
run in another home run.
Great to have you here in Tokyo.
Thank you for giving us the
time.
Speaker 1: No problem.
I'll see you in August.
Got it.
All right.
I'm gonna let you know my
details here.
You're on coach in the back.
My flight arrangements.
Yeah.
Yeah.
The travel agency.
He'll take good care of the
hotel.
Speaker 2: All these photos
courtesy of the great Ken
Griffey Junior.
Thanks for being with us.
We'll come back to Tokyo after
this.
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Bat today.
Speaker 1: Dave Fleming Eduardo
Perez great to have Ken Griffey
Jr. with us thanks to him for
stopping by.
He has enjoyed his time here in
Tokyo.
He still loves his Mariners.
You.
Know still loves baseball.
He identifies he identifies with
the Mariners and that's really
good to see.
I remember when I was playing in
Vancouver and triple play.
And I was low on bats.
What did I do.
Cross the border.
Go to Junior.
He would hook me up.
With a big old smile and I went
back was pretty good lumber.
Ramone Larry I know Phillips
wanted to write centerfield and
he'll take it.
He kind of got left out of the
party last night.
Each row cut it off before it
could get into the gap and that
is the first hit given up by you
say Kikuchi in his third inning
of Major League work catcher.
Got a pro wrestler also by law.
Speaker 2: By LoBiondo.
And the reason being stayed let
the ball travel not afraid to
get jammed.
Yesterday he was jumping out at
the baseball Kikuchi trying to
go off what he saw yesterday.
While Rondo making that
adjustment.
Mariano is such a good defensive
player.
Hit leadoff in last night's game
and struggle.
Speaker 1: To drop down to the
eighth spot tonight base hit
first time up.
Here's the catcher Josh Begley
taking strike one.
Speaker 2: You're gonna do our
kilometers per hour two miles
per hour.
Translation for us again tonight
I absolutely think that it was
one forty six.
Oh.
Touch a nine.
Yeah it's a good thing.
It's a good thing.
At times here in Japan.
He would pitch in the mid 90s.
Speaker 1: We haven't seen the
best pick off move from him yet.
He's given up a walk and now I
hit.
What a night for him.
One of very best pitchers in
Japan these last several years
pitching for the lions of say
boo.
For your contract with the
Mariners this offseason and he
makes his major league debut of
all places Tokyo.
He claims.
That curveball there he claims
that when he signed with the
Mariners he did not realize that
they were opening this season in
Japan.
It was like a week later or
sometime later and he looked at
the schedule or someone told him
hey he realized that he had a
chance if he could earn that 1
or 2 spot in the rotation a
chance to pitch here for the
first time as a major league.
Pitcher.
So it wasn't the deciding
factor.
That.
Got away.
One of my very favorite things
about being here in Japan these
last two nights the way the
crowd reacts to not just big
moments but little moments to a
pop up hit particularly high or
a guy dashing from second to
third on a wild pitch or that.
Or how about just the butt.
Gordon late yesterday where
everyone just stood.
I mean they didn't they don't
stand here but they clap.
Speaker 2: As hard as they could
because they realized that it
was an important moment and they
value the button.
Here.
In Japan.
Speaker 1: If you want to make
fans in this ballpark in any
ballpark here in Japan get a
good bunt down.
Yesterday there were a couple
situations where back in the
day.
You would bunt.
One to is inside its two and two
to family.
Now we're seeing more guys
swinging away.
And everyone would.
Hear them.
Not.
But.
They should have punted.
The A's almost never do it.
The A's as much as any team in
the big leagues.
They do not bunt fight the last
season 5.
In how many games do they play.
One hundred and sixty three.
Five times.
Still to a two to that one was
at one hundred and forty one.
Speaker 2: Winners per hour.
Eighty seven.
And a half miles per hour right
there.
Speaker 1: At 146 147.
We've seen that a couple of
times.
But how effective you can pitch
side.
Get to to speed up the bat and
then we've seen that breaking
pitch that you can throw to both
sides of the plate.
He's not the first Japanese
born.
Player to.
Speaker 2: Pitch here in Japan.
Dice game pitched but he is the
first Japanese born to make his
major league debut in his home
country.
He's wearing that honorary
number 18.
In Japan he wore number 16 which
is also a distinguished number
mostly because I think of one
pitcher you know.
The number 18 has always been a
number that the ace of the
staff.
Here in Japan will wear.
Speaker 1: Vaguely flips that
one to shallow right.
Gordon an eight year old come
together it's the second
baseman.
Gordon.
The next matter is the shortstop
Marcus.
It's pretty cool thing to be
able to do this on Fernando
Venezuela who balance way low
pitched in Monterrey Mexico have
you Vazquez made four starts in
Puerto Rico and two here.
Oh yes here.
Dice K here in Japan.
They're in Puerto Rico last year
for somebody else.
Yes.
I was there for that one also.
So it was Karl Roberts and
curtain.
And now you say Kikuchi adds his
name to that list.
Speaker 2: Marcus simian hitting
leadoff tonight.
One got away sort of a few
little signs at the command is
starting to slip for Kikuchi.
Speaker 1: Who knows sometimes I
wonder a guy is making a start
like this huge adrenaline all
the buildup you get through
those first couple innings and
maybe something changes.
I want to see the adjustments
and how he pitches to the same
lineup.
Now for the second time around
was good point this is now the
second time through.
Starting with this hitter.
We saw the fastball away we've
seen a couple of curve balls.
Now he hasn't been able to
finish off those pitches.
He's not close to what.
The Seattle Mariners have him
for the pitch count which is
around 80 85 pitches.
To count hitters count second
time around the lineup.
Market segment.
Now at least have seen him.
And a long way to go in this
game we saw that last night
where you had to play from
behind a couple different times.
Speaker 2: And with power.
This Oakland lineup they can do
that.
They can and.
Scott service.
Speaker 1: The manager for the
Seattle Mariners.
He understands his bullpen is
not that beat.
So he's going to continue to
press offensively.
Close.
The pitch The.
Speaker 2: Good well executed
pitch on the top part of the
zone.
Kikuchi wanted it.
You saw the reaction.
Now.
Good hitters count for a good
hitter.
Marcus Simeon swung the bat well
last night.
Three and one.
Swing and a miss.
Speaker 1: Count that you would
sell out knowing 100 percent the
fastball was coming with no outs
runner at second.
This is it right here especially
knowing you got big time horses
coming up behind you.
Again 3 2.
I'm looking for the same thing.
Throws anything off speed.
Let's see.
3 2.
He did throw something off
speed.
Speaker 2: He executed well.
He's showing you that he will do
that.
Now how did the count.
That's what's going to give him
success.
That's what makes him dangerous.
He's had three strikeouts so far
five swings and this is total.
Speaker 1: That slider that
Chapman saw earlier on.
Then he goes.
Up.
Right there.
And then.
And so he's showing different
angles different pitches the
ability to get and entice the
swing and miss.
Was big second out.
He's got a couple of pop ups in
a row after the leadoff hit by a
lorry Cano.
Was at second.
He's trailing three nothing in
Tokyo against the Mariners who
won Game 1.
Last night 9 to 7.
On 1.
One ball one strike the count
two Chapman who struck out
swinging one of those nasty
breaking balls we saw just a
moment ago his first time up.
One of the great young hitters
in the game against a guy that
the Mariners hope becomes one of
the great young pitchers.
Each era who is lined up to hit
third But Buster Olney who's
always up early he's up early
today and already working.
Has passed along to us sort of
what we were hearing was
possible but buster.
Has confirmed a local news
report that each pro has told
the Mariners he is going to
retire after this game.
So.
Speaker 2: We think that's true
now and that makes this an even
bigger night for you draw who's
coming up in Tokyo.
When we come back.
This series in Tokyo has turned
into a celebration of the great
each year old Suzuki who of
course began his career in the
professional leagues in Japan
was a three time Pacific League
MVP one of the great players in
the history of Japan came to the
Major Leagues.
Starting in 2001 was not just
the rookie of the year was the
MVP a 10 time All-Star a 10 time
Gold Glove Award winner two
hundred plus hits in his first
ten major league years the all
time single season hits record a
guy who is truly one of the all
time greats to play this game
better than four thousand three
hundred hits if you combine
Japan and Major League Baseball
and we are now reporting Buster
only is reporting confirming a
report from here in Japan that
each row has told the Mariners
and he didn't tell him.
Way in advance it wasn't like
they knew that this even coming
into this series but he has told
the mariners that he is going to
retire after tonight's game that
this will be the final game that
each role plays as a major
leaguer.
And it just to me it it paints
this game and this night in a
different light and it seems so
fitting.
A man who is just beloved here.
He is.
Speaker 1: A man of routine.
This is what he's done.
And what he's dedicated his
entire life to.
He do a third against Marco
Estrada in this inning Tim
Beckham.
Is leading off and is ahead in
the count two and one that
discipline that he chose had.
Speaker 2: During the season in
the off season the training he's
forty five years old if any.
What a great shape.
He really does.
Got away from vaguely it's three
and one.
And.
If you think about it this is a
player that's never.
At the major league level had to
use a hitting coach.
Because he's so unorthodox when
it comes to a swing.
That really a hitting coach.
Doesn't even understand.
How to begin to start explaining
to him.
Things.
That.
Speaker 1: He's never really
struggled.
This has been his biggest
challenge now in spring
training.
The struggles he's had.
Pressing knowing.
That the end could be near.
And now we're hearing the
report.
That where he started his
career.
In Japan.
Now he's ending it as a major
leaguer.
In Japan.
Guy to center field.
Mariano is under it.
Speaker 2: Went away.
Look we know each row has not
been a regular player for
several years now.
It's not like the struggles of
this particular spring training
were brand new.
Speaker 1: But he has never
wanted to talk about it.
He defines himself as a baseball
player.
That is what he does.
That is his obsession.
That is his passion.
And number 51 when you say that
when you see that here.
And in the United States and in
the big leagues it means all of
those things.
Ryan Healy who.
Launched a two run homer his
first time up tonight.
Is very quiet right now in the
Tokyo Dome and it.
Is.
Everyone's looking on deck.
Sorry Ryan that smash knocked
down by Simeon Nice play his
throw picked out by Matt Olsen.
That's.
What.
Matt Olsen does.
I think people here.
Have to have heard the new.
Center.
Right fielder.
Live in a time where that news
can travel so quickly.
They don't stand.
Here in Japan it's just sort of
part of the etiquette of being
in a game.
They're standing now many of
them are.
No matter which side you're
pulling for.
Speaker 2: Even if it came on a
check swing.
Well everybody here would take
it.
A lot of infield hits.
Almost literally.
Everybody who is here trying to
capture the moment.
And we don't think this is going
to be his.
Speaker 1: We don't know exactly
how this game is going to play
out but we don't believe that
this is going to be his final at
bat.
I don't believe so.
For a moment.
Everybody here thought that
maybe.
Speaker 2: That is the third
hour we're going to see more of
each year on what sounds like
it's going to be the final night
of his great career.
Speaker 1: They are just packed
here inside the Tokyo Douma
where the A's and the Mariners
are playing the second game of
two of the opening series in
Tokyo Japan to get the 20 19
major league baseball season
started and some gigantic news
as the game has gone on.
We were hearing rumblings and
rumors but it has been confirmed
that each pro has told the
mariners that tonight is going
to be his final game that he is
going to after the game announce
his retirement.
Stephen biscotti it's one foul
out of play.
The Mariners have a three
nothing lead each row has had
two trips to the plate is 0 for
2.
He's going to get at least one
more we figure.
I would imagine it's something
along the lines Eduardo of last
night where Scott service.
Sort of designed a way to get
Israel out of the game with some
fanfare give the fans here a
chance for a big ovation.
I would imagine that something
like that would be in the works.
I would not be surprised if this
becomes almost like a Cal Ripken
type moment.
When he broke the record.
And whether Ichiro would play
along with that.
Speaker 2: Or to what degree we
don't know.
But.
Speaker 1: Everybody here would
love to see something like that.
We would never forget it.
Would you say Kikuchi who is
making his major league debut a
huge star here in Tokyo and in
Japan in his own right.
And.
It's gonna be part of the story
of this game his performance his
major league career off and
running but it's gonna be
overshadowed.
On the ground to third.
Ryan Healy learning that
position on the fly made a
pretty good play.
Speaker 2: The next day you're
not ready for Opening Day if
you're not following MLB on
social media follow MLB on
Facebook Instagram and Twitter.
That would be one way where you
could follow everything that's
going on with.
The all time greats each pro
Suzuki.
All eyes in this country are on
him last night and tonight and
now even more so.
Chris Davis takes ball one can't
you imagine you and I've been
here in Tokyo for several days
exploring this great city can't
you imagine that everywhere
around this city and around this
country.
If people weren't already
finding a way to get to a
television.
Speaker 1: At home in a bar with
friends to try to see the final
moments of his career no doubt
and.
I went all over.
Different districts of Japan
this morning and this afternoon
early afternoon and saw so many.
Each row jerseys.
Went to shoot.
Shibu.
Ja.
An area there and there were so
many young people.
Wearing jerseys not only of the
Mariners but also.
Marlins jerseys.
What a feeling that must be for
him standing out in right field.
Two and two to the slugging
Chris Davis who led Major League
Baseball with his 48 home runs
last year.
I.
Was a rare back on that one he
did.
That one touched one hundred and
fifty kilometers per hour OK
ninety three.
I think that's that may be the
fastest fastball we've seen.
Davis with a fast swing as he
always has but popped it up.
The next batters.
Left fielder.
Chad.
For.
Two outs nobody on.
Speaker 2: Next Thursday opening
day for the other 28 teams and
we've got three games for you
here on ESPN and ESPN deportees
at the time if you're back in
the United States will be a
little bit more viewer friendly
1:00 Eastern Orioles Yankees
Diamondbacks Dodgers from L.A.
and then the nightcap Red Sox
and Mariners from Safeco.
These Mariners will kick off the
full portion of their major
league schedule at home against
the defending World Series
champions.
Pindar struck out his first time
up he's behind in the count now
0 and 1.
Speaker 1: Had a good game last
night.
He's going to play a lot for
the.
Underrated hitter it's going to
start in the light.
What.
Kikuchi is doing against this
lineup the second time around
showing him different.
Pitches.
Now aggressive with the fastball
and.
Tries to speed you up.
Let's see where he uses this
waste pitch.
Speaker 2: That toward each row
and just gliding still so
graceful.
Now that's a souvenir.
Forty five years old playing his
final game.
Each year old here in Tokyo.
Speaker 1: MLB at home is
presented by flown A's allergy
relief experience twenty four
hours all in one allergy relief
or your money back.
Speaker 2: Welcome back to Major
League Baseball's Japan opening
series on ESPN.
Our telecast is presented by
Edward Jones.
Just a moment ago as he truly
made a catch for the final out
in the bottom of the fourth
inning.
Maybe a passing of the torch.
Speaker 1: Night from one great
star and perhaps the brightest
star of all time in this
baseball crazy country.
Each row who has told the
Mariners Buster only is now
reporting that this will be his
final game.
He did not tell us.
He hinted it in a way.
And in his own way that that
could perhaps be the case.
Gordon leading off for Seattle
here in the.
Fifth inning with the Mariners
leading three nothing.
But we are now reporting that
this will be the final game of
each rose career and you say
Kikuchi making his major league
debut not his professional
debut.
But another great star from
Japan has come to Seattle.
Seems very fitting detonate.
It really does.
Kind of written up any better.
He's got a hint.
That that would complete the
story or else it would fake
Lee's guy room lots of foul
territory here at the Dome.
One away.
Marco Estrada has really got all
these hitters Mitch just to get
that ball in the end.
So far.
You look at all the productive
all the outs that the Seattle
Mariners may not all of them
last two were on the ground but
the rest have been all up in the
air especially with pop ups 6
pop up in the infield.
Part of the reason why I think
the A's are betting that they
can help Marcos try to get back
to high level performance he was
one of the best pitchers in the
American League 2015 2016 is
really good for the Blue Jays
last couple of years has not
been as good.
But at the Coliseum a good place
to pitch and a hard place to hit
home runs perhaps the perfect
ballpark for Marco Estrada.
To get his career turned around.
Mitch Antigua who crushed a home
run his last time up and has a
double and a homer and two at
bats continue to say he better
he has to throw that curve ball
to the right and he can show
that he throws a first strike.
If it's early in the count.
And make his fastball more
effective and also the change
up.
Speaker 2: Way up in the air
Larry Yano with plenty of room
in right center field.
First time managers made it out
and another fly ball loudly on
those fourth.
Speaker 1: Put out already this
other field.
Speaker 2: Watch every auto
market regular season game live
or on demand with MLB TV or
subscription includes MLB At Bat
premium allowing it to stream
live.
Baseball and your favorite
supported devices blackout and
other restrictions apply.
Visit MLB TV for details.
Now that 20 19 is under way.
Real games this is big league
baseball that counts in the
standings.
Speaker 1: You got to get the
MLB app.
The MLB got to get all the.
Jay Bruce has popped out twice.
Kikuchi waiting for his turn
back on about.
One.
And one.
This is a count right now where
Marco Estrada usually throws
that change up.
To entice.
The soft contact.
Down to one count.
Good bye Jay Bruce.
Now three one.
Tough decision for him to make
his coochie.
A along.
32.
That's interesting is that.
Some kind of cool gloves here in
Japan.
Personalize them all.
Those subtle little differences.
Bruce to right fielder to Scotty
just enough room on the edge of
the warning track.
Speaker 2: Kikuchi back to the
mound when we come back to
Tokyo.
Speaker 1: You wouldn't accept
an incomplete job from anyone
else.
Speaker 2: Why accept it from
your allergy pills flown is
sentenced nothing stronger
nothing gentler.
Nothing lasts longer.
Flown is sentenced.
Twenty four hour non drowsy
allergy relief.
Speaker 1: You say Kikuchi back
to work here in the bottom of
the Fifth.
He has put up four zeros in his
major league debut with so much
fanfare and attention on him to
go along with all the attention
on the e-trade Suzuki here in
Tokyo Dave Fleming Eduardo
Perez.
Just thrilled to be here for
what has turned into a very
newsworthy.
Couple of games at the Tokyo
Dome.
Matt Olsen.
Taking strike one and now the
Mariners change the defense up
when Kikuchi gets ahead of
account the shift.
Changes a little bit and it's
even different now than it was
the first time Olsen was at the
play.
Don't do.
Speaker 2: Nothing.
Speaker 1: Seattle twenty seven
years old you say Kikuchi a star
with the Cebu lions sign in the
off season four year deal with
Seattle.
Just about everybody in the big
leagues.
Wanted this guy.
He was the number one prospect
by far.
In the Japanese professional
leagues the last couple of
years.
After show Hey Tony.
Speaker 2: Just hides the ball
really well again I've said it.
He's gotten really good balanced
strong legs has a very good idea
of what he wants to do it's true
it's also cultural here.
In the Japanese league where
pitchers do not shake off
catchers we've seen him do it
already with Narvaez so he's
taking charge of what he wants
to do on that mound.
Still own to.
Every pitcher's throat with the
purpose that one right there.
Fastball up after the slider or
the foul ball.
Showed him up.
After that he's had the tendency
now dropping and going soft down
and away or hard down in a way.
Speaker 1: Target is still up he
goes it back up he did.
That's always the pitch right
there.
First pitch served the purpose.
It's possible that the end is a
little closer now at that 73
pitch count.
What it's got service tell us he
thought was sort of the general
area eighty five.
Pounds is ripped over the
leaping attempt to D Gordon.
It.
Ends up in the glove of each
row.
And Olson has himself a hit.
Play you go up twice back to
back on purpose and then throw a
pitcher taking off speed pitch
against Olson.
Not really what you want and the
adjustment that the Oakland
Athletics made were yesterday
they were aggressive they swung
at the first pitch twelve times
because they knew exactly what
Marco Gonzalez would do try to
get ahead they wanted to see you
say Kikuchi.
The first time around.
Speaker 2: That way because
you're going to see him a lot.
Same division.
Now they're seeing him for the
first time tonight but that will
change quickly.
He will face the A's quite a bit
you assume.
DIRKS in profile takes that
first pitch for a strike.
I would say though the number
one question for him from folks
who follow the Japanese leagues
who scout all the people who
were anxious to get Kikuchi to
major league baseball the health
he has had shoulder problems and
it's not just last year where he
had a few of them throughout his
career he has had a hard time
staying fully healthy on the
ground right through the whole.
Olsen stops at second each row
still has an arm and everyone
here in the state and they were
anticipating and hoping.
That Matt Holstein would try to
go to third base.
Throw squared up.
Speaker 1: Smartly did not throw
it the next also knows better he
does.
Plus he knows what the score is.
Time run now allowed him to come
to the plate.
Each row.
Now will play a little bit more
shallow with loud piano.
And.
This immediately becomes the
best scoring opportunity for the
A's first time they've had two
runners or more on base at the
same time against Kikuchi.
The bull pens are hidden here at
the Tokyo Dome they are behind
the dugouts underneath the
stands.
And we do get a chance to peek
in there.
And now a little stirring and
that mariners bullpen.
So royalties Ellis is going to
start to warm up.
And we'll see with how much
urgency.
To on no outs for Oakland.
Or at least is the type of
picture where you'd rather bring
him in.
To start an inning.
Speaker 2: Used as a starter.
Most of the time.
Managers do not feel
comfortable.
Bringing guys in like that with
inherited runners on.
The pitching coach is gonna come
out that is Paul Davis with an
interpreter alongside.
And you say he understands very
well English also he speaks it
well.
But.
You.
Want to make sure at least that.
You have the interpreter there.
Speaker 1: Make sure all the
subtleties are there.
Coaches wife we understand is
not even here in Japan she is in
Seattle helping get everything
settled and ready for them to
make the full time move during
the season.
All kinds of adjustments for
players going in both
directions.
And if she's watching right now
if you're watching.
Ohio was I lost to you.
Because I lost.
They even cheer that the end of
the meeting.
Kikuchi ready to go back to
work.
Two on no outs and a two ball no
strike count.
Mariano who got his first hit of
the year his first time up
tonight just kind of punch one
into right field.
Great opportunity for Oakland
here.
Lock them up with a little
Carter right there.
Thinking it was going to mean
the middle way it started cut in
and you see the uncomfortable
swing.
To the top.
Come in on the.
I want a broken back player.
Just the one back home court it
was ready to try to get a double
play.
Fast scramble to get back to
first.
Great pick broken but second
one.
Of the night for a loud piano as
you see the splinters flying
upon contact that's big out
that's kind of a perfect example
that at bat of where in the
Japanese leagues.
Almost certainly an eighth place
hitter would even down three
nothing no doubt would would've
been Buddy.
No.
Doubt.
First time I ever played in the
stadium we were down 14 the one.
In the bottom of the seventh
seventh inning.
Runner on first no outs.
They bundled him over.
Now that would never happen in
the big leagues.
Foul ball off the bat of Josh
Begley.
Speaking of your experience here
in the Tokyo Dome.
Unusually this is only the
second time that Kikuchi has
pitched in a real game like an
exhibition game one other time.
But because he was in a
different league than the
Yomiuri Giants they do play
interleague in NPP but it's only
for a set period it's not many
games in the middle of the
season and only one time did he
ever pitch in this stadium in
his Japanese professional
career.
Hetero staying loose in case
he's got a chance for a play at
the plate.
Or play with his arm.
Now see these are all the notes.
Speaker 2: Other players that
are watching the game also take
notice.
Runner in scoring position.
What are the tendencies.
What does Kikuchi do so far.
He's feeling comfortable
pitching inside the righties in
situations like that.
So now.
Major League players second time
around when they see him or even
first time around they could
sell out more on the inside part
of the plate.
Speaker 1: Knowing that that's
where he goes when he's in
trouble.
Maybe even Marcus Simeon who's
waiting on deck.
Maybe even Josh vaguely who's in
the batter's box.
Speaker 2: Great chance here for
the A's to at least get on the
board.
Two on no outs now two on one
out.
Place hitter at the plate at the
top of the order is looming.
Vaguely toward Jerome who will
square up and make the catch.
Hits the cutoff man perfectly.
I.
Love the sides.
We cover both bases.
Absolutely.
Flip it over.
Speaker 1: Again he missed a
spot.
Pitch was supposed to be up and
down and it stayed away.
That shows you maybe a little
fatigue where he's missed
location a little bit.
Was able to get away with it
because of the placement of the
outfielder.
You saw his reaction almost
right as he released the pitch.
He knew it was not a perfect
pitch.
But as has been the case
throughout the.
Many years.
Twenty eight professional years
for each row.
Headed in his direction as a.
As a pitcher you usually feeling
pretty good.
So now the top of the order this
is the third look at Kikuchi.
Who has a chance to be in line
for a victory tonight in his
major league debut if he can get
this.
Third out.
Something has not looked
comfortable at all against
Kikuchi.
But this is a ballpark where one
swing of the bat.
Could tie.
The ball game.
Short.
Porch especially in the gaps.
Speaker 2: Of locked him up.
Did he go.
No.
That's a good pitch right there.
You said.
He locked them up.
To that go to pitch after short
on the fastball away.
Right about at what we figure is
his limit.
Could be that this would be the
final hitter no matter what
happens for Kikuchi.
In his major league debut
tonight here in Tokyo.
Simian hits one foul just kind
of scripted.
It's wanted to.
Speaker 1: They scored seven
runs last night sound like they
haven't scored in this series
mostly with the home run ball
their three four fifteen in two
games with runners in scoring
position.
Another chance here for Marcus
Simeon.
Who doesn't get him here and the
bases were loaded.
I'd still let him for Scott.
You would.
I would.
Have had a high stress sitting
until right now.
This is the last game they play
until they open up against the
Red Sox on 28.
1 to.
Speaker 2: Try to get him with
that back to our breaking ball.
You want to.
I think it was outside.
That was.
Time to go back to that cutter
in.
Was.
Speaker 1: A big strong looking
guy.
Would you stand next to him.
This has been the highest stress
inning by far.
Or.
Kikuchi.
20th pitch of the inning.
It is.
Yeah.
But we.
Could say by Narvaez full count
three and two that does give
those base runners the extra
advantage with two outs.
And a three to count they can
get the head start.
Has to go to that slider.
Speaker 2: Tough decision right
now for Scott service that you
bring in.
Ryan is at least with the bases
loaded or do you allow Kikuchi
to get himself out of this.
He is definitely ready if need
be.
Mariners hope they don't have to
make that decision.
Here we go.
Two on two out three to pitch.
Foul ball how to play what with
that.
Slider cutter that he throws.
Even even Scott service and Paul
did that they're learning about
their new pitcher.
He.
He wants to keep him in even if
he walks them.
But he knows where the pitch
count is at eighty nine and now
you have to look at the bigger
picture.
How far can you push.
You say Kikuchi.
Another three to.
Semi and rips one foul.
Shown them twice already with
that.
With that slider and.
You can hot go back.
In there for a strike if you do
you better hope he swings over
and misses it.
Down in the zone or you can go
fast ball.
Hardaway.
Three times showing a major
leaguer that pitch.
After already seen them.
For the third time.
Risking.
A pitch of the at bat here to
market severe.
Speaker 1: Right back up the
middle hard hit base hit.
That's gonna get the first run
home.
Olsen will score without a play.
Simeon comes through.
It is 3 to 1 mariners.
And we'll see.
You have to think.
It's got services coming out and
he is.
He.
Speaker 2: Didn't want to do it.
But he is.
I mean still I think you have to
be really impressed with the way
that he pitched.
With all the pressure the
attention in his major league
debut.
He's gonna get a big ovation the
coming off the mound.
Absolutely.
He deserves that pat on the
back.
But the A's have broken through.
And Kikuchi you've got to come
out of the game now.
He's on the board threatening
four more mariners go to the
bullpen a.
Well-deserved ovation for
Kikuchi.
Very nice major league debut for
twenty seven year old left
hander USA Kikuchi four and two
thirds the pitch count
ultimately got him I think
ninety one pitches and he is
responsible for two men on base
maybe the A's best overall
hitter coming to the plate A's
are on the board trailing 3 1
Matt Chapman against.
At least the new pitcher.
Another left hander out of the
Seattle bullpen making his 20 19
debut.
Not afraid right there one with
the off speed pitch change up
first pitch against Chapman gets
it over.
Chapman 0 for 2 against Kikuchi.
And he takes out one that just
misses it's 1 and 1.
0 8 his alias.
Former with the Red Sox.
He's got some talent he's had
some moments.
As a young player coming up even
as a big leaguer.
Good pitch.
When he's wanted it also.
We've talked about how Oakland's
biggest question mark is in
their starting rotation I think
the Mariners biggest question
mark is in their bullpen where
they have had huge turnover last
year twenty three big league
appearances.
2 6 5 VRA.
Now a huge number of strikeouts.
Chapman a little Tapper.
Speaker 1: Alias is gonna take
it himself and the ball is
dropped by J.
GROSS So far we'll score it's a
one run game.
I don't know what happened tied
himself up.
That's one of those plays was a
first baseman you give him a
good target but you know that a
lefty usually throws a little
too seam action at you.
And the glove position.
PJ Bruce Stephens won against
them.
He locked himself up right here
throw in his makes a perfect
throw.
But the angle of which he threw
it.
J Bruce taking his eye off the
baseball.
Speaker 2: Not being able to
make the play perfect.
Speaker 1: Perfectly done by us
coming right out of spring
training.
That's something pitchers do
often.
Speaker 2: J Bruce has been
around a long time.
He's not played a ton of first
base but he's played enough and
that was by his standards a
routine play error on Bruce.
And now the A's have a chance to
tie the game or more.
Should have been the final out
should still be a two run lead
it's 3 to 2.
Scotty was out in front.
Speaker 1: Get everything right
against Chapman a guy that's
swung in bat.
Well in this ballpark.
With.
The soft contact and right now
the coochie all you can do is
watch us throw in the silliest
has to go against biscotti.
Again biscotti.
On the front foot off balance.
That's a.
Henkel pseudo.
It's a change.
OK.
I learned that word.
Speaker 2: We're getting the
terminology down.
Jay Bruce has started 33 games
in his long Major League career
at first base including tonight.
So some experience not a whole
lot of it.
Speaker 1: Time to go back to
that change up showed him
fastball up.
You don't have to repeat there
again.
Change.
Level.
Wanted to.
Scotty strikes out swinging went
back to the changeup it was a
great one hand from Kikuchi his
night is done mariners hold on
to a one run lead.
Speaker 2: Well we're going to
cap off MLB is full opening week
next Sunday with a couple of
series finales Cubs Rangers at 4
p.m. Eastern and then our first
Sunday night game the defending
and Allie's champ Braves against
Bryce Harper and the Phillies
7:00 Eastern 4:00 Pacific.
Both games on ESPN ESPN
deportation the ESPN app.
You can watch him anywhere as we
cap off that first long weekend
of the major league season which
begins March 28.
Depending on where you are.
One week from.
Today.
He is very petite now in the
game to pitch for Oakland A's
made a couple changes.
As we go to the six is now a one
run game whose property was a
valuable member of the A's
bullpen last year pitch ninety
three innings.
That's kind of his role he is
not just a one hitter pitcher or
one inning even pitcher he often
will soak up several innings at
a time.
Couple years ago he was
phenomenal for the Angels as you
see Mark Cano now playing first
base Matt Olsen out of the game
and he ran the bases a wonder I
don't think the A's would've
made that move.
Just if everything was totally
perfect.
Matt was that ball hit hard
right into the defense simian
throws out Encarnacion.
Speaker 1: So hopefully
everything we wouldn't want to
speculate but with Canada in
Olsen out but who knows maybe
Bob Melvin wanted Mark Canada at
least get a little game
experience coming all the way
over to Tokyo get his season
started.
Speaker 2: Doesn't sound right
to me but we don't take out
battles on that one that's the
one that started all the games
last season for you.
Hopefully he's OK but when
you're playing on turf.
Remember most of the infielders
down Major League Baseball
they're always playing on dirt
more than anything.
This is the only ballpark.
That will have.
Speaker 1: Turf.
Pretty much all over but across
all over.
The field already Toronto and
Tampa Bay.
It's all dirt infield.
Hard on your legs.
If the A's give us any info
we'll pass it along.
You're not obligated to do so
but we'll try to find out if
there's any.
Specificity as to why Matt Olsen
came out of the game.
Matt Olsen status is not the big
news of an AFL.
Big news for A's fans.
But the news of the night is
each pro and he has apparently
told the Mariners we're
reporting Buster only is
reporting confirming a Kyoto
news report today that each pro
has told the Mariners he is
going to retire as a player
after the game tonight.
That was not.
Planned out ahead of time
everybody sort of thought maybe
it would be perfect coming back
here to Tokyo to his home
country where the fans love him
as one of their all time greats.
As.
I think in arguably the most
famous most notable person in
the country of Japan today.
Speaker 2: And each pro Suzuki
apparently has told the mariners
that after the game tonight he
is going to hold a press
conference and announce that
this will be his final game.
At forty five years old.
3000 plus hits as a big leaguer
at ball for the Domingo Santana.
Not quite.
Forty four hundred hits total as
a professional but all time
leaders for Japanese born
players he drills got the most
hits the most runs batted in the
most runs.
Matsui with one hundred and
seventy five home runs each row
I mean it's interesting you look
back at his career and we're
doing that we have been doing
that for the last several years.
Speaker 1: But especially
tonight as it comes to an end.
15 home runs the most that he
ever hit in one season he did
that in 2005 everybody always
said.
That if Israel had wanted to hit
more home runs had wanted to be
more of a home run hitter he
could have.
Do you agree with that.
I believe I believe that.
It's unbelievable the power that
he always displayed in batting
practice the ability of finding
barrel.
Consistently.
Number one among all active
leaders in stolen bases with
five hundred and nine.
You think back to it was 19
years ago when he played his
final season as a professional
in Japan.
He played nine years as a
professional in the Japanese
leagues.
And that was 19 years ago that
he finished that he hit three
eighty seven in his final year
here in Japan before he came.
To the Major League signed with
the Mariners and he was terrible
in spring training that year
Waller's.
Speaker 2: Loop Manila even said
if this guy hits 300 I'm going
to run around naked around Times
Square.
Did that ever happen.
Oh I'm still waiting for that.
Maybe we shouldn't be waiting
for that.
I'll take that back.
Never mind.
Sweet Lou that first year when
he won not just the Rookie of
the Year award but the MVP in
his first season as a major
leaguer.
He finished hitting a cool 350.
Narvaez loops one shallow left.
Speaker 1: Enough time for
Pindar to get there and make the
catch.
He trails all time high.