Yomiuri ace Koji Uehara scattered six hits over the distance for his first shutout win of the year as the Giants defeated the Hanshin Tigers 3-0 at Tokyo Dome on Friday, snapping their losing streak against the Central League frontrunners at five.
Uehara (11-3) walked one and struck out seven and did not let a runner past second en route to his fifth straight complete-game victory and first shutout since Sept. 22, 2002.
Mototsugu Kawanaka scored Yomiuri’s first run of the game when he hit a solo homer in the first inning off Hanshin starter Hideki Irabu.
In the third, the Giants added two runs with RBI singles by Tomohiro Nioka and Roberto Petagine.
Irabu (11-5) was tagged for three runs on five hits while striking out seven as Hanshin suffered its sixth shutout loss of the year.
Dragons 5, Swallows 1
Alex Ochoa went 3-for-4 and smashed a two-run homer to cap Chunichi’s go-ahead four-run fourth inning as the Dragons downed Yakult at Nagoya Dome to climb into third place in the CL standings.
Makoto Kito (6-6) allowed one run on eight hits over five innings for the win.
The Swallows out-hit the Dragons 12-8 but left 13 runners stranded on base.
Carp 3, BayStars 1
Tom Davey (2-0) limited Yokohama to four hits over the distance and picked up his first complete-game victory of the year as Hiroshima beat the BayStars at Hiroshima Stadium.
Davey was within one out of a shutout when he gave up a solo homer to Takanori Suzuki in the ninth inning.
Koichi Ogata went 3-for-4 with two RBIs and belted a solo homer — his 20th clout of the year — in the fifth inning.
The BayStars lost their third game in a row.
Buffaloes 7, Hawks 3
Hirotoshi Kitagawa went 3-for-4 and drove home four runs as Kintetsu beat PL-leader Daiei at Osaka Dome.
Kitagawa nailed a three-run homer in the second inning off Hawks starter Hayato Terahara (6-3) and added an RBI double in the eighth.
Jeremy Powell (10-10) gave up three runs on seven hits over 5 1/3 innings and five relievers held Daiei to one hit the rest of the way.
Lions 7, BlueWave 4
Alex Cabrera slammed his 38th dinger of the year to tie Kintetsu’s Tuffy Rhodes for the PL homer lead as Seibu beat Orix at Yahoo BB Stadium.
Kazuo Matsui and Kazuhiro Wada also homered — their 23rd and 24th home runs, respectively.
Lefty Yoshihiro Doi (1-1) picked up the win, pitching two-thirds of an inning in relief of starter Chang Chih-chia, who gave up four runs on eight hits over 5 2/3 innings.
Fighters at Marines — ppd.
Lee may not return
The Associtaed Press
American Leon Lee may not return as manager of Japan’s Orix BlueWave after all.
Yoshihiko Miyauchi, owner of the Pacific League team, retracted an earlier statement that Lee will be back next year regardless of where the team finishes this season, local media reported Friday.
“More than next season, this season’s results are what matters,” Miyauchi was quoted as saying by the Sankei Sports newspaper when asked if Lee would be back next year. “In any event, we’re not satisfied with losing.”
It’s been a rough second half for the BlueWave, last in the standings before Friday’s games with a 33-61 record. On July 27, the team gave up a Pacific League-worst 26 runs to league-leading Daiei and then surpassed the dubious record on Aug. 1 when they surrendered 29 runs to the Hawks.
Since Miyauchi said Lee would be back as manager next season no matter what, the team has posted a record of eight wins, 14 losses and one tie while giving up 189 runs for a 7.40 ERA.
The 50-year-old Lee was hired as a batting coach of the BlueWave in the offseason and was then elevated to manager in place of Hiromichi Ishige on April 23 after the club’s disappointing 7-12 start.
As a player, Lee was one of the most successful imports to have played in Japan’s pro leagues.
He played for the Lotte Orions from 1978 to 1982, the Taiyo Whales from 1983 to 1985 and the Yakult Swallows in 1986 and 1987. He belted 268 homers in 1,255 games, had 884 career RBIs and a .308 average over 10 seasons.
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