• The Associated Press


Makoto Imaoka drove in six runs on a pair of homers and a triple Thursday as the Hanshin Tigers downed the Chunichi Dragons 8-1 to open up a 1 1/2-game lead in the Central League standings.

Imaoka hit a two-run homer in the third inning at Koshien Stadium and then added a three-run blast in the fifth as the Tigers took a commanding 6-1 lead. The veteran infielder drove in another run in a two-run seventh with a triple to center field.

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