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Masato Morishita Throws Immaculate Inning in NPB

 Nick Martin - World Baseball Network  |    Jul 2nd, 2024 1:30pm EDT

An inning gets labeled “immaculate” when a pitcher strikes out all three batters he faces using the minimum number of pitches: nine. Masato Morishita, a pitcher for the Hiroshima Toyo Carp of Nippon Professional Baseball in Japan, was immaculate today for the Carp.

The immaculate inning came in a start for Morishita against the Hanshin Tigers. Morishita struck out all three Tigers batters on nine pitches in the fifth inning of the game.   

Hiroshima Carp starter Masato Morishita tossed an Immaculate Inning against the Hanshin Tigers today
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Morishita was strong throughout the game, on top of the fifth inning. He pitched eight scoreless innings and allowed four hits while striking out nine. Morishita would get a no-decision in this game, and the Carp would lose 3-0 after allowing three runs in the tenth.   

The 26-year-old righty is in his fourth season in the NPB. He made his debut in 2020 for the Carp and has been a solid rotational piece for Hiroshima since. In ten starts this season, Morishita is 6-3 with a 1.58 ERA, which is below his career average of 2.69.  

Morishita won the 2020 Central League Rookie of the Year in the NPB and two NPB All-Star team selections in ‘21 and ‘22. He has also had success pitching on the international stage. During the 2020 Olympics, Morishita was trusted by his manager to start for Team Japan in the Gold Medal Game against the United States. He pitched five innings where he allowed three hits but zero runs. Japan won the game 2-0 and won the Gold Medal, its first baseball Olympic Gold in the nation’s history.  

The Carp are currently first in the Central League standings with a 37-30 record.  

Photo Credit: Pitcher Masato Morishita #15 of Team Japan celebrates after the fifth inning against Team United States during the gold medal game between Team United States and Team Japan on day fifteen of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at Yokohama Baseball Stadium on August 07, 2021 in Yokohama, Kanagawa, Japan. (Photo by Koji Watanabe/Getty Images)

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Nick Martin - World Baseball Network