• The Associated Press


News photoShintaro Ejiri of the Hokkaido Nippon Ham Fighters pitches against the Orix Buffaloes on Sunday at Sapporo Dome. The Fighters won 5-1.

Former New York Mets player Benny Agbayani homered twice and drove in six runs Sunday as the streaking Chiba Lotte Marines won their 10th straight game with a 15-3 victory over the Softbank Hawks.

Agbayani hit a three-run homer in the sixth when the Marines took a commanding 9-3 lead at Yahoo Dome and then added another three-run shot in the ninth.

Matt Franco, who also used to play for the Mets, had a two-run homer in the third inning.

Bobby Valentine’s Marines, who are off to their best start in 45 years, swept the Hawks and opened up a 3 1/2-game lead in the Pacific League standings over Softbank.

Lotte starter Shunsuke Watanabe picked up the win after holding the Hawks to three runs on 12 hits over eight innings.

Nobuhiko Matsunaka hit a pair of solo homers for the Hawks.

Fighters 5, Buffaloes 1

At Sapporo Dome, catcher Kazunari Sanematsu hit a two-run homer in the bottom of the second inning when Nippon Ham scored three runs on its way to a win over Orix.

Nippon Ham starter Shintaro Ejiri picked up the win after holding the Buffaloes to one run on five hits over five innings.

Orix starter Kevin Beirne took the loss after giving up all five runs on seven hits over six innings.

Lions 3, Eagles 2

At Fullcast Stadium, Hiroyuki Nakajima drove in the winning run on an infield single in the top of the eighth inning as Seibu edged Rakuten.

Seibu pitcher Takashi Ishii, who came on in the seventh inning, picked up the win after recording one out and Kiyoshi Toyoda retired the side in the ninth for the save.

Rakuten starter Yasuhiro Ichiba had a solid outing but took the loss after giving up three runs on seven hits over eight innings.


Giants 7, Carp 4 (5)

Kazuhiro Kiyohara hit a two-run homer in the first inning and Hiroki Kokubo added a pair of solo homers in the second and third innings as Yomiuri defeated the Carp in a game at Hiroshima Stadium that was called after five innings due to rain.

Giants rookie Takahiko Nomaguchi picked up his first win as a professional after giving up four runs over five innings.

Dragons 15, BayStars 9

At Yokohama Stadium, Alex Ochoa hit a solo homer in the fifth inning and added a three-run homer in the sixth to give league-leader Chunichi victory over the BayStars.

Kosuke Fukudome also had a three-run homer in the fifth for the Dragons, who took two out of three from Yokohama.

Swallows 5, Tigers 1

At Jingu Stadium, Akinori Iwamura and Ken Suzuki each drove in a pair of runs to lead Yakult over Hanshin.

Yuhei Takai picked up the win after holding the Tigers to one run on seven hits over 6 2/3 innings.

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