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Hisashi Iwakuma walked none and pitched eight-plus sharp innings en route to his third straight win in as many starts this season as the Osaka Kintetsu Buffaloes maintained an early lead in a 6-2 victory over the Seibu Lions in the Pacific League on Saturday.

News photoFumitoshi Takano of the Buffaloes slides home safely
past Seibu catcher Toru Hosokawa during Saturday’s
game at Seibu Dome.
Osaka Kintetsu beat the Lions 6-2.

The Opening Day pitcher looked ready to go the distance at Seibu Dome until he allowed a two-run homer to Hiroyuki Nakajima with two out in the seventh inning for his only mistake. Iwakuma (3-0) yielded eight hits and struck out seven in his 127-pitch outing.

Koji Mitsui (0-1) was knocked out in 3 1/3 innings after being rocked for five runs on five hits, three walks and throwing a wild pitch.

BlueWave 9, Marines 7

At Yahoo BB Stadium, Arihito Muramatsu and Kazuhiko Shitotani had three RBIs apiece and Jose Ortiz chipped in two more runs on a bases-loaded double to highlight a four-run sixth inning as Orix overcame a two-run deficit to beat Chiba Lotte.

Fighters 11, Hawks 1

At Fukuoka Dome, Shinji Takahashi went 3-for-4 and drove in three runs, including two on a single in a four-run third, and Itsuki Shoda pitched one-run ball over five effective innings and was made a winner over Daiei and Kazumi Saito (1-2) despite yielding nine hits.

CENTRAL LEAGUE

Carp 15, BayStars 5

In Hiroshima, Shigenobu Shima hit a pair of solo homers and Greg Larocca hit a grand slam to feature a five-homer game for the Carp, who attacked with 18 hits in a come-from-behind win over Yokohama.

Six of the nine starting players from the home team had multihits, including pitcher Tom Davey (1-1) who doubled and singled in two at-bats at Hiroshima Stadium. Davey was made a winner despite giving up five runs and eight hits in five innings.

Yokohama produced 11 hits but Takashi Saito (1-1) wasted the effort and was chased with nine earned runs in four innings of work. He allowed 10 hits, four of which were homers.

Tigers 3, Dragons 2

At Koshien Stadium, Hanshin scored the go-ahead run in the sixth inning when Tomoaki Kanemoto hit into a bases-loaded double play and Atsushi Kataoka followed with an RBI single for insurance, lifting the home team past Chunichi.

Giants 4, Swallows 3

At Tokyo Dome, Kazuhiro Kiyohara drew a bases-loaded walk to lift Yomiuri to a walkoff victory in the ninth inning and Shinnosuke Abe hit a two-run drive for his second homer in as many days to cap a three-run fourth.

Kinkade deactivated

OSAKA (Kyodo) Hanshin Tigers infielder Mike Kinkade, who was hit in the head by a pitch a day earlier, was removed from the active roster after he sustained bruises to the left side of his forehead, officials of the Central League club said Saturday.

Kinkade was released from the hospital where he was taken after the incident in which a Martin Vargas pitch struck the side of his helmet.

Surgery for Ide

FUKUOKA (Kyodo) Daiei Hawks outfielder Shotaro Ide will have surgery on a dislocated left shoulder next Wednesday, officials of the Pacific League club said Saturday.

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