OSAKA – Greg LaRocca hit a two-run homer in the bottom of the 10th inning to give the Orix Buffaloes a 4-3 ‘sayonara’ win over the Rakuten Eagles in the Pacific League on Friday.
LaRocca took a 1-0 fastball from Koki Watanabe (3-3) over the left-field wall for his 23rd homer of the season after Arihito Muramatsu had drawn a leadoff walk at Kyocera Dome.
Orix sent the game into extra innings on an RBI double by Takeshi Hidaka in the bottom of the ninth before a Masanobu Okubo (3-1) wild pitch put Rakuten ahead in the top of the 10th.
Lions 6, Fighters 5
At Goodwill Dome, Toru Hosokawa hit a game-tying two-run double and Takumi Kuriyama drove in the go-ahead run in the eighth inning as the Seibu Lions rallied to beat Pacific League-leading Hokkaido Nippon Ham. Seibu came back from deficits of 4-1 and 5-3 to take the lead for good when Hosokawa doubled into the gap in right-center with one out and Kuriyama singled to left one out later off Hisashi Takeda (4-6). Rookie Tetsuya Iwasaki (2-1) took the win with one inning of shutout relief and Alex Graman earned his 12th save.
Nippon Ham took a 2-0 lead on a two-run double by Tomochika Tsuboi in the first inning and an Atsunori Inaba homer helped the Fighters to a three-run lead after the top of the fourth.
Kazuhiro Wada and Takahiko “G.G.” Sato hit back-to-back homers in the bottom half to cut the lead to one run but Seibu went up by two runs again in the seventh on Inaba’s run-scoring single.
Dragons 8, Tigers 1
At Nagoya Dome, Masahiko Morino and Hidenori Kuramoto hit two-run singles in the first inning and Kenta Asakura picked up his 10th win of the season as the Chunichi Dragons beat the Hanshin Tigers 8-1 in the Central League on Friday.
Chunichi jumped to a 4-0 lead on the clutch hits by Morino and Kuramoto and added three runs in the fifth on five hits, including run-scoring singles by Norihiro Nakamura, Lee Byung Kyu and pinch-hitter Kazuyoshi Tatsunami.
Asakura (10-6) joined Kenshin Kawakami and Kenichi Nakata as the Dragons’ 10-game winners this season, holding the Tigers to a run on seven hits in 6 2/3 innings. Tsuyoshi Shimoyanagi (8-8) took the loss.
Carp 8, Giants 7
Swallows 3, BayStars 2