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2001 Japan Series
|2001 Japan Series|
|Television||ABC (Games 1, 2), Fuji Television (Games 3, 5), TV Asahi (Game 4)|
The 2001 Japan Series was the 52nd edition of Nippon Professional Baseball's postseason championship series. It matched the Central League champion Yakult Swallows against the Pacific League champion Osaka Kintetsu Buffaloes. The Swallows defeated the Buffaloes in five games to claim their fifth Japan Series championship.
Osaka Kintetsu Buffaloes
Kintetsu had one of the most powerful offenses ever seen in the league. Foreign import Tuffy Rhodes teamed up with Norihiro Nakamura to become one of the most feared hitting tandems in Nippon Professional Baseball history. Rhodes hit 55 home runs to tie the NPB record for most home runs hit in a season, while Nakamura hit 46 home runs of his own.
|1||Buffaloes – 0, Swallows – 7||October 20||Osaka Dome||33,837|
|2||Buffaloes – 9, Swallows – 6||October 21||Osaka Dome||33,277|
|3||Swallows – 9, Buffaloes – 2||October 23||Jingu Stadium||30,443|
|4||Swallows – 2, Buffaloes – 1||October 24||Jingu Stadium||32,145|
|5||Swallows – 4, Buffaloes – 2||October 25||Jingu Stadium||32,568|
Game 1 would become one of the best pitching performances turned in by any one starter in quite some time. In fact, it almost became historic. Yakult ace Kazuhisa Ishii kept the powerful Buffaloes lineup at bay, striking out 12 batters and walking 4. After walking the first batter of the game, Ishii retired the next 8 batters he faced. He would no-hit the Buffaloes through 6 and 1/3 innings and eventually shut them out, throwing a complete game.
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