OSAKA – In the latest twist involving a planned merger between the Orix BlueWave and Kintetsu Buffaloes, Kintetsu players association president Koichi Isobe suggested Sunday the strong possibility of an indefinite strike.
“We had a meeting before the game today and we are united in our resolve that we will fight. We will persevere until we can be satisfied with the situation,” Isobe said after a game against the Daiei Hawks at Osaka Dome.
The pro baseball players association has scheduled a meeting for Monday in Kobe and is likely to propose the first work stoppage in Japanese baseball history.
An injunction was sought by the association to shelve the Orix-Kintetsu merger but the Tokyo District Court turned down the request Friday.
Top officials of Nippon Professional Baseball decided to hold off on the merger following a nonbonding request from the court but will put the merger to vote at a special executive committee meeting Monday before giving the final seal of approval at an owners meeting Wednesday.
Marines stay in hunt
The Associated Press Shunsuke Watanabe pitched a four-hitter over eight solid innings Sunday as the Chiba Lotte Marines edged the Orix BlueWave 5-3 to stay in the hunt for the final playoff spot in the Pacific League.
Lions 4, Fighters 1
At Sapporo Dome, Jose Fernandez hit a two-run homer in the fourth inning to lead Seibu over Nippon Ham.
Hawks 6, Buffaloes 5
At Osaka Dome, Hisao Arakane and Nobuhiko Matsunaka both hit solo homers as league-leading Daiei scored four runs in the top of the eighth inning on its way to a win over Kintetsu.
Carp 6, Dragons 5
At Hiroshima Municipal Stadium, Greg LaRocca went 4-for-5 and drove in the winning run in the bottom of the ninth inning to lift the Carp to a ‘sayonara’ win over front-running Chunichi.
BayStars 5, Swallows 3
At Yokohama Stadium, Hitoshi Tamura and Tatsuhiko Kinjo each drove in a pair of runs to lead the BayStars over Yakult.
Giants at Tigers — ppd.