Chibba Lotte Marines win Japan Series crown


Bailey Stephens of has an update from our baseball friends overseas.

The Chibba Lotte Marines defeated the Chunichi Dragons 8-7 on Sunday to win the Japan Series — a series that featured the longest game in the league’s history.

The Marines and Dragons battled to a 2-2 tie* after six hours and 43 minutes in Game 6 Saturday.

That led to Sunday’s decisive Game 7, whenYoshifumi Okada knocked in the go-ahead run with an RBI triple in the top of the 12th to lead the Marines to the club’s first Japan Series title since 2005.  Current ESPN analyst and active managerial candidate Bobby Valentine was that 2005 team’s manager.

The Marines finished third place in the Pacific League regular season standings, but had a Giants-like run through the playoffs.

*Bud Selig was not spotted in the stands.  No word yet on whether he called for the cease in action from another locale.

Michael Conforto unlikely to be on the Mets’ Opening Day roster

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Mets GM Sandy Alderson told reporters today that it was “unlikely” that Michael Conforto will make the opening roster.

Not shocking given the shoulder surgery he had back in September, but given that he seems to be recovering more quickly than first anticipated, it was worth Alderson’s time to make the announcement. Indeed, back in December it was not expected that he’d see much if any game action at all during spring training, but here he is, playing DH today in the Mets game against the Cardinals.

Conforto missed the last six weeks of the 2017 season with a left shoulder injury and underwent surgery in early September to repair a tear of the posterior capsule in his shoulder. He finished the season batting .279/.384/.555 with 27 home runs and 68 RBI in 440 plate appearances. By the looks of things, he should be back some time in April.