Hillman's Fighters fall in Japan Series

Hillman's Fighters fall in Japan Series

KANSAS CITY -- It was an imperfect ending for Trey Hillman in Japan.

His Nippon Ham Fighters went down in the Japan Series as two Chunichi Dragons pitchers combined for a perfect game on Thursday at Nagoya.

Daisuke Yamai pitched eight innings and closer Hitoki Iwase worked the ninth for the perfecto as the Dragons won, 1-0, and took the series four games to one.

Hillman, who was introduced as the Royals' new manager on Oct. 22, had directed the Fighters to the title last year. However, this time his club could muster just seven runs in the five games.

It was the first no-hitter in the 57-year history of the Japan Series.

"I'm very disappointed that it's over," said Hillman, the Associated Press reported. "You want the series to go on as long as it can go, but we weren't able to take it back to our ballpark."

His Fighters defeated the Dragons in last year's series.

Hillman's five-year Japan experience is sure to be among topics in his live Web chat on MLB.com at 3 p.m. CT on Tuesday. He'll address the Royals' 2008 season and answer fans' questions.

To participate in the chat, fans must have an account on royals.com.

Dick Kaegel is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.