• SHARE

Wladimir Balentien’s season began with a lot of lonely days in Toda, Saitama Prefecture, a city of a little more than 126,000 (according to a 2012 population estimate) just across the Arakawa River, while his Tokyo Yakult Swallows teammates were busy taking on three of their Central League rivals.

Back then, “Coco” was still at the team’s minor-league facility working his way back from the left groin injury he suffered during the World Baseball Classic. He was happy to be back under the bright lights on Friday and eager to help the Birds take on the defending Japan Series champion Yomiuri Giants.

In a time of both misinformation and too much information, quality journalism is more crucial than ever.
By subscribing, you can help us get the story right.

SUBSCRIBE NOW

PHOTO GALLERY (CLICK TO ENLARGE)