• The Associated Press


Toshiya Sugiuchi tossed a three-hitter Monday as the Softbank Hawks blanked the Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles 4-0 at Fullcast Stadium.

Sugiuchi, the 2003 Japan Series MVP, struck out 12 Rakuten batters while issuing just one walk to pick up his second win of the season.

“I had good control of my offspeed pitches and that was a huge help,” said Sugiuchi. “(Kenji) Jojima called a great game behind the plate and hopefully I can keep pitching like this.”

Nobuhiko Matsunaka connected for his first homer of the season — a solo shot to straightaway center in the top of the fourth — to give the Hawks the lead.

Julio Zuleta, who homered in Softbank’s 4-1 win over Seibu on Sunday, hit a two-run homer to left in the top of the sixth, when the Hawks took a 4-0 lead.

Lions 3, Fighters 2

At Invoice Seibu Dome, Hiroyuki Nakajima doubled in a run in the bottom of the eighth inning to lift the Lions over Nippon Ham.

Seibu reliever Shinji Mori picked up the win after retiring the side in the eighth. Kiyoshi Toyoda worked the ninth for the save.

Marines vs. Buffaloes — ppd.

Mirabal off roster Hokkaido Nippon Ham Fighters right-hander Carlos Mirabal has been sidelined due to inflammation in his pitching shoulder and needs about a month to return to action, team officials said Monday.

Mirabal complained of shoulder pain after losing his third straight start in an 8-2 loss to the Chiba Lotte Marines on Friday. He was removed from the Fighters’ active roster Saturday and received examinations at a Tokyo hospital earlier on Monday.

Swallows ink hurler

The Yakult Swallows have acquired right-hander Rick Guttormson from Triple-A Tacoma on a one-year deal worth 30 million yen, officials of the Central League club said Monday.

The 28-year-old Guttormson, who has no major-league experience, went 5-4 with 25 saves in Double-A last season. He is expected to fill the gap in the Swallows’ starting rotation and can earn more through performance-based incentives.

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