FUKUOKA – Masahiro Tanaka threw his eighth complete game of the season in a 10-strikeout effort, beating Toshiya Sugiuchi in a pitchers’ duel in the Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles’ 2-1 victory on Saturday over the Fukuoka Softbank Hawks, whose winning streak ended at four games.
Tanaka (12-4) scattered six hits and walked two in a 126-pitch outing. Sugiuchi (7-4) allowed two runs and four hits in eighth innings, striking out nine and walking one.
Akihisa Makida doubled deep to left for the opening run with two outs in the eighth and Ryo Hijirisawa followed with an RBI single to center for a 2-0 lead. Alex Cabrera singled in a run for Softbank in the final frame.
Fighters 4, Buffaloes 0
At Sapporo Dome, Hokkaido Nippon Ham rookie Yuki Saito threw five shutout innings and Shinya Tsuruoka had a two-run single in a win over Orix.
Saito (4-2) got in and out of trouble, yielding seven hits en route to his first win since July 17. Four relievers pitched the rest of the way.
“I pitched five innings and the relievers helped me get the win,” Saito said. “This year I would really like to experience winning the championship, so I want to give it my all to keep winning so our team can be champions.”
Yoshio Itoi had an RBI single in the first and Atsunori Inaba added a run-scoring single in the sixth, both off Orix starter Hayato Terahara (10-6). Catcher Tsuruoka cushioned the lead with his single to center with two outs in the eighth.
“Saito hasn’t been able to win lately so I wanted to give him the type of signs that would lead to a victory today,” Tsuruoka said. “I wanted to give us some insurance and I was able to hang in there and the ball fell in a good location.”
Orix lost its fifth in a row.
Lions 3, Marines 2
At Chiba’s QVC Marine Field, Yutaro Osaki delivered a tiebreaking RBI double in the fourth inning off Shunsuke Watanabe (5-6) as Seibu snapped a 10-game losing skid in Chiba since last season.
Takayuki Kishi (4-5) limited the damage to two runs in eight innings for his first win since July 11. He retired 16 in a row after a Kazuya Fukuura sacrifice fly tied the game at 2-all in the third.
Rookie Kazuhisa Makita pitched the ninth to earn his 11th save.
Giants 7, Swallows 2
At Tokyo Dome, Yomiuri capitalized on three walks in the first inning when Michihiro Ogasawara and Shinnosuke Abe hit back-to-back two-run doubles and Hisayoshi Chono added a bases-clearing double in the eighth in a rout of CL leader Tokyo Yakult.
Shun Tono (5-8) pitched five-hit ball in his second complete game of the season for the Giants, who moved within four games of the Swallows. Yoshinori Sato (6-5) got tagged for four runs in five innings.
Tigers 5, BayStars 3
At Yokohama Stadium, Yasutomo Kubo (6-4) threw two-run ball over 5⅓ innings to win his third consecutive start, Matt Murton and Craig Brazell both homered and Hanshin ended a three-game losing skid with a win over last-place Yokohama.
Takashi Toritani got his team on the scoreboard with an RBI double in the first followed by a Takahiro Arai run-scoring single.
Murton hit a solo blast off Naoyuki Shimizu (2-4) in the fifth and Brazell went deep with a leadoff shot in the eighth.
Dragons 1, Carp 0
At Nagoya Dome, Naomichi Donoue broke a scoreless deadlock with a seventh-inning RBI double, lifting Chunichi over Hiroshima for its first four-game winning streak this season.
Masato Kobayashi (5-0) won in relief and Hitoki Iwase closed out the ninth to reach 20 saves for the eighth consecutive year. Jumpei Shinoda (4-5) took the loss, despite yielding just one run in seven innings of work.
The Central League-leading Yakult Swallows have suffered another blow as right-handed ace Shohei Tateyama had to join closer Lim Chang Yong on a list of deactivated players Saturday.
Tateyama, who has an 8-2 record with a 1.75 ERA in 18 starts this season, has complained of discomfort in the middle and fourth fingers on his right hand.