Koji Uehara pitched a four-hitter over nine innings Wednesday as the Yomiuri Giants edged the Central League-leading Chunichi Dragons 2-1.

News photoDaiei’s Julio Zuleta pushes Lotte Marines pitcher Dan Serafini to the ground after being beaned by a pitch during the sixth inning Wednesday at Fukuoka Dome. The Hawks won 5-2.

Uehara, playing in his first game at Tokyo Dome since returning from the Olympics, struck out six as the Giants pulled within 4 1/2 games of the Dragons in the standings and kept their pennant hopes alive.

Takayuki Shimizu went 4-for-4 and drove in both Yomiuri runs with a clutch double to left field in the fifth inning off Chunichi starter Masahiro Yamamoto.

Tigers 4, Swallows 1

At Koshien Stadium, Tomoaki Kanemoto hit a pair of solo homers to power Hanshin to a win over Yakult.

George Arias also hit a solo homer for the Tigers.

Hanshin left-hander Kei Igawa picked up the win after holding the Swallows to one run on six hits over eight innings.

Carp 9, BayStars 5

At Hiroshima Municipal Stadium, Tomonori Maeda connected for a three-run homer in the first inning to power the Carp to a win over Yokohama.

Shigenobu Shima added a two-run homer in support of Hiroshima starter John Bale, who gave up five runs on eight hits over seven innings.


Hawks 5, Marines 2

At Fukuoka Dome, Kenji Jojima hit a two-run homer and Julio Zuleta added a solo shot as league-leading Daiei downed Lotte.

Akichika Yamada picked up the win after holding the Marines to one run on four hits over seven innings. Koji Mise recorded the final four outs for the save.

Buffaloes 8, Lions 7

At Osaka Dome, Hirotoshi Kitagawa hit a three-run homer in the third inning to lead Kintetsu to a win over Seibu.

With the loss, the Lions fell 4 1/2 games behind the Hawks in the standings.

Fighters 12, BlueWave 5

At Yahoo BB Stadium, Tsuyoshi Shinjo went 3-for-5 and drove in two runs to lead Nippon Ham to a victory over Orix.

The former New York Mets player singled in the sixth inning when the Fighters scored four runs and connected for a solo homer in the ninth to close out the scoring.

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