Kazuyoshi Tatsunami hit a two-run homer to cap a seven-run outburst in the second inning as the Chunichi Dragons went on to crush the Yakult Swallows 8-3 on Thursday night.
The Dragons sent 10 batters to the plate and cranked out six hits in the second, including Masahiro Araki’s bases-loaded RBI single and an RBI double by Hirokazu Ibata at Nagoya Dome. Kosuke Fukudome drove in two runs on a two-out single.
Yakult took an early 1-0 lead in the first on Alex Ramirez’s RBI single but production fell stagnant afterward with just two more runs recorded in the eighth.
Opening Day winner Kenshin Kawakami (2-0) scattered eight hits over eight innings, allowing three runs — two earned — with two strikeouts and one walk in picking up his second win of the season.
Loser Kevin Hodges (0-2) was rattled for seven runs — two unearned — on eight hits in six innings.
At Hiroshima Stadium, southpaw Kei Igawa tossed a four-hitter with nine strikeouts over the distance and got a boost from George Arias’ three-run homer in a five-run, go-ahead seventh as the Hanshin Tigers defeated the Hiroshima Carp 7-2.
With the game tied 2-2, Osamu Hamanaka had a sacrifice fly to center for the go-ahead followed by a Shinjiro Hiyama double and Arias’ blast to left with two outs to cap the scoring.
Igawa (1-1) surrendered two runs in the second but settled down after the third for his first win of the season. Masayuki Hasegawa (0-1) yielded seven runs on nine hits in seven innings for the loss.
The official title of former Yomiuri Giants manager Shigeo Nagashima, appointed this month as an adviser to the Japanese Olympic Committee for the 2004 Athens Olympics, is executive adviser, the JOC said Thursday.
At a board meeting the same day, JOC President Tsunekazu Takeda said Nagashima, 67, will not only contribute to the enhancement of athletes’ performances but also to various JOC activities, including meeting athletes to boost their morale.
“There are various requests coming from each section, and I’m hoping to consult him for advice if his schedule permits,” Takeda, 55, who was recently re-elected as JOC president for his second two-year term, said.
The JOC had been considering appointing Nagashima to the new post because of his outstanding record with the Giants and his immense popularity.
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