As AdvertisedBefore I make my game prediction, there's a little business to do with regard to Matsuzaka. You've obviously seen the Asahi Super Dry beer ads that Matsuzaka has been featured in, and maybe you've had a look at the Toyota ad that ran a few months ago. Chances are, you missed the Aquarius Sports Drink ad that has been running in Japan lately. Actually there are two versions of the ad. You can watch them at the Aquarius website, as well as the "making of" video clips that might be of interest to you. Coca Cola produces Aquarius among other sports drinks and ion replenishing beverages. Coke has a relationship with MLB so you see the MLB logo in the commercials and drinks like Aquarius, unique to Japan, can also market themselves using MLB licensing.
What you see in the banner ad above is a note about a couple of Aquarius-related contests going on now. The bottom box tells you about the chance to win tickets to the September series against the Yankees, with seating up on the Green Monster.
In Japan, it's popular to put little giveaways on the tops of sodas and beverages to entice the thirsty masses to choose one drink or the other. Recently, the sports drink category of Coca Cola Japan has been giving away little MLB team towels with their drinks, pressure shrunken and neatly packaged in a little plastic hang tag around the necks of the bottles. I've been trying to find a Yankees towel, but can't seem to get one for the life of me. I stick my head into the refrigerator unit and remove each and every bottle with these "gifts" and can only seem to manage Tampa Bay, San Diego, St. Louis, Cleveland, Milwaukee, and a couple of Red Sox. Here you'll see a Red Sox towel being used as a drip catcher for a convenience store "hot pot".
Aquarius is a very thirst quenching beverage that has that unmistakable sports drink taste. Kind of coats your tongue activating salivation. I drink it fairly often and enjoy it a lot. The Matsuzaka ads are a little over the top with CG of fire engulfing the mound and water bursting from Daisuke's pitching hand, scorching the dirt and peeling it apart. You know the genre. What's interesting to me is the Pepsi counter attack to the Matsuzaka campaign. Check it out below:
Prediction: 7 IP, 6 hits, 1 walk, 1 run, 10 strikeouts
If that looks familiar, it's because it's the exact pitching line that Daisuke produced in his debut against KC. The Giants' offensive metrics are actually slightly worse than KC across the board, in part thanks to the pitcher batting, but they are bad offensively. Watch our man dominate.