YOKOHAMA – Daisuke Miura allowed a run over the distance to earn his third straight win as the Yokohama BayStars stomped the Central League-leading Yomiuri Giants 10-1 on Thursday.
The BayStars, who finished last in the CL in five of the last six seasons, swept a three-game series from the Giants for the first time in eight years. The fifth-place BayStars moved to within 7-1/2 games of first place.
The 40-year-old Miura (3-4) held Yomiuri scoreless until Giants captain Shinnosuke Abe homered in the ninth. The right-hander allowed nine hits but no walks, while striking out nine.
“The crowd was really behind me from the start and it just built as the game went on,” said Miura. “I’m grateful to my teammates for scoring and playing great defense behind me.”
But while Yokohama’s defense was in top form, the Giants were charged with three errors but were sloppier in the field than that figure suggests, with numerous poor decisions and misguided throws.
The BayStars opened the scoring in the first on a two-out walk, a Tony Blanco double and an RBI single from Yoshitomo Tsutsugo. The hosts made it 2-0 in the second on a pair of infield singles, a wild pitch and a throwing error. Noriharu Yamazaki opened with a single to second, advanced on a wild pitch and scored on a throwing effort by Yomiuri shortstop Hayato Sakamoto on a single by Miura.
After Miura retired the side in order in the top of the third, his teammates kept the scoreboard ticking in the home half. Giants starter Ryosuke Miyaguni (0-1) had kept the ball down for the first two innings, but began missing up in the third inning and things got ugly quickly.
BayStars captain Takehiro Ishikawa led off with a wind-assisted home run that landed behind the last row of seats in the right-field stands. Takayuki Kajitani, who scored the game’s first run, lined a high hanging curve to right for a double, and Blanco mashed a high fastball for an RBI single. Tsutsugo doubled on a first-pitch fastball down the pipe, and Yamazaki singled home Blanco with one out to make it 5-0.
Giants relievers Takahiro Aoki and Yuki Egarashi held their hosts scoreless for three innings, but former closer Kentaro Nishimura went to the hill in the eighth and allowed five runs, two earned, over the last two innings.
Blanco went 4-for-4 with a pair of RBI singles to pace Yokohama’s 16-hit onslaught.
“Miura pitched so well, it motivated me,” Blanco said.
Carp 6, Dragons 2
At Nagoya Dome, lefty Takaya Toda (2-1) allowed two runs on eight hits over 6-1/3 innings and Hiroshima got solo homers from Tsubasa Aizawa and rookie Kosuke Tanaka in a win over Chunichi.
Swallows 13, Tigers 4
At Tokyo’s Jingu Stadium, Tokyo Yakult banged out 16 hits in a win over Hanshin, including home runs from Ryosuke Morioka, Yuhei Takai and Tetsuto Yamada, in setting a team record with 10-plus hits in eight straight games.
Hawks 2, Lions 1
At Omiya Stadium, Kenji Otonari (2-0) threw six scoreless innings to win his second straight game since returning from back surgery as league-leading Fukuoka Softbank beat Seibu to run its winning streak to five.
Dennis Sarfate closed it out against his former club, working around two hits to record his 28th save.
Marines 2, Eagles 1 (10)
At Chiba’s QVC Marine Field, Katsuya Kakunaka won it for Chiba Lotte with a 10th-inning sayonara double off Takahiro Norimoto after teammate Yuki Karakawa and Tohoku Rakuten starter Takahiro Shiomi each allowed a run in eight innings.