FUKUOKA – Sho Iwasaki combined on a seven-hit shutout with three relievers, Yuki Yanagita homered and drove in a pair of runs, and the Fukuoka Softbank Hawks routed the Chiba Lotte Marines 7-0 on Thursday night in Fukuoka.
Iwasaki (2-0) allowed four hits, struck out four and walked one over six effective innings in front of a crowd of 30,910 at Yafuoku Dome.
Lefty Hideki Okajima, Yuito Mori and Akihiro Yanase put up zeroes over the final three frames and had more than enough support in a 14-hit onslaught.
Second-year left-hander Takahiro Matsunaga (3-3), making his first start of the season, had a sudden lapse in the fourth when he hit a batter and issued a walk before surrendering Yanagita’s RBI single that gave Softbank a 1-0 lead.
Yanagita hit a two-out blast for his 10th homer in the sixth and Seiichi Uchikawa added insurance with a two-run single that keyed a three-run seventh. Kenta Imamiya and Kenji Akashi contributed with an RBI double and run-scoring single in the eighth.
“The (outside-the-park) home run I had at Seibu Dome (on June 28) was perfect, but this one was just as perfect. It’s a different feeling when you hit one at home,” said Yanagita, who was 2-for-3 hitting in the No. 7 spot.
Buffaloes 7, Eagles 4
At Kyocera Dome, Orix rallied from a run down in a three-run first inning, which featured RBI singles by Esteban German and Takahiro Okada, en route to beating Tohoku Rakuten. Chihiro Kaneko (7-3) yielded two runs over seven innings for the win.
Fighters 8, Lions 3
At Omiya Stadium, Juan Miranda gave Hokkaido Nippon Ham the lead with a tiebreaking two-run single in the seventh inning as the Fighters battled past Seibu in driving rain. Yutaka Otsuka (1-0) threw 1⅓ scoreless innings for his first career win.
Swallows at Tigers — ppd.
Giants at Carp — ppd.