Tadahito Iguchi scored on a wild pitch in the eighth inning Friday and Daiei snapped a five-game losing streak with a 3-2 win over Nippon Ham at the Fukuoka Dome.

Central League
WonLostTiedPct.GBYomiuri 27 17 0 .614 -Hanshin 24 17 1 .585 1.5Yakult 23 19 0 .548 3.0Chunichi 21 19 1 .525 4.0Hiroshima 18 19 1 .486 5.5Yokohama 9 31 1 .225 16.0Pacific League
WonLostTiedPct.GBSeibu 26 13 1 .667 -Daiei 23 17 1 .575 3.5Kintetsu 20 19 1 .513 6.0Nippon Ham 21 22 0 .488 7.0Orix 16 24 0 .400 10.5Lotte 14 25 1 .359 12.0

Rookie hurler Hayato Terahara (2-1) gave up six runs and two hits while striking out seven over eight innings for his second win of the season for the Hawks, who trail Seibu by 3 1/2 games in the Pacific League standings.

Koji Akiyama hit a solo homer in the fourth inning as the Hawks rallied for two runs after Terahara had spotted the Fighters a two-run lead on four hits in the first inning.

Daiei took the lead on a wild pitch by reliever Kiyoshi Sasaki (2-3) that allowed Iguchi to come home with the go-ahead run in the eighth.

Rodney Pedraza got the final two outs of the game to notch his seventh save of the season for Daiei. Marines 5, BlueWave 0

Lotte pounded Orix starter Edward Yarnall (3-4) in the opening frame, while Nathan Minchey hurled a shutout game for the Marines at Chiba Marine.

Lotte scored all of its runs in the first, when it scored five on five hits. Kazuya Fukuura and Frank Bolick went 1-for-4 with an RBI.

Minchey (3-6) gave up three hits, one walk in facing 29 batters for his first shutout game since July 1998, when he was with the Carp.

With the loss, the BlueWave are only 1.5 games ahead of the last-place Marines. CENTRAL LEAGUE Carp 1, Giants 0

Hiroki Kuroda shut out Yomiuri on three hits while working a wicked forkball for 13 strikeouts as Hiroshima scratched out a win at Hiroshima Stadium.

Kuroda (2-1) posted his first shutout win of the season, scattering three hits and a pair of walks over the distance.

Takuya Kimura, who went 3-for-4 for the night, singled home the only run of the game off Giants’ Masumi Kuwata (2-4) after Akihiro Higashide had doubled aboard in the third inning with two outs. Swallows 5, BayStars 1

Alex Ramirez hit a three-run homer and second-year right-hander Yataro Sakamoto allowed only four hits over 7 2/3 innings while striking out 10 to power Yakult over Yokohama at Jingu Stadium.

Sakamoto (1-0) kept the BayStars off-balance with a big-breaking slow curve as he notched his first win as a pro in his 14th mound appearance this season.

Atsuya Furuta also homered for Yakult, which won its third in a row and moved four games over .500 for the first time this season.

Matsuzaka will wait

TOKOROZAWA (KYODO) Seibu Lions right-hander Daisuke Matsuzaka will miss his second scheduled start next week because of a nagging sore elbow sustained during a game earlier this month, officials of the Pacific League club said Friday.

Matsuzaka was set to return to the mound in Monday’s game against the Daiei Hawks at Fukuoka Dome, but decided to take his time nursing his right arm after tossing a few pitches in the bullpen Friday — the first time in 11 days.

“It did not feel good. I want to play (in a game), but I can’t afford the team taking risks,” said Matsuzaka, who skipped a start last Sunday although X-rays showed nothing unusual.

The 21-year-old all-star left the mound in Seibu’s 3-1 loss to the Kintetsu Buffaloes on May 13 after feeling some discomfort in his throwing elbow.

Tigers trade Evans

TOKOROZAWA (Kyodo) The Seibu Lions announced Friday that they were sending left-handed relief pitcher Takehiro Hashimoto to the Hanshin Tigers for outfielder Tom Evans.

Southpaw Hashimoto has 11 wins, 21 losses and 20 saves in 522 games over his 13-year career with Seibu and currently holds the record for consecutive relief appearances with 488. He was selected to the Pacific League all-star team in 2001.

Evans, who played for the Texas Rangers before joining Hanshin last season, compiled a .242 batting average with 30 hits in 124 at-bats last year, but has been on the Central League club’s minor league team since the opening of the 2002 season.

Buffs ink Canadian

OSAKA (Kyodo) The Kintetsu Buffaloes announced Friday that they had acquired Los Angeles Dodgers’ farmhand Mike Johnson and expect the right-hander to join the Pacific League club by the end of the month.

The 26-year-old Canadian, who has been with the Dodgers’ Triple-A affiliate in Las Vegas this season, has some major league experience with the Baltimore Orioles and Montreal Expos, pitching in 81 games while compiling a 7-14 career record.

In a time of both misinformation and too much information, quality journalism is more crucial than ever.
By subscribing, you can help us get the story right.