Tono, Giants bullpen take care of business against punchless Lions


Shun Tono combined with three relievers on a three-hit shutout and Alex Ramirez, Shinnosuke Abe and Hisayoshi Chono each went deep as the Yomiuri Giants beat the Saitama Seibu Lions 4-0 on Saturday.

Tono (8-1) matched the Central League high in wins, striking out five and walking three in six hitless innings in interleague play between the two top teams. Tetsuya Yamaguchi got the final five outs to pick up his first save.

“Today my main focus was trying to get each batter out one at a time. I was able to do that, so it was a good start for me,” Tono said. “I had a strain in my leg, so I decided it was better to come out (from the seventh inning) and leave the rest to the bullpen.”

Hayato Sakamoto’s RBI double opened the scoring in the third and Ramirez jumped on a 1-0 fastball by Kazuyuki Hoashi (6-3), hitting his Japanese baseball-leading 17th home run, in the fourth for a 2-0 lead at Seibu Dome.

Abe and Chono added back-to-back blasts in the seventh to cap the scoring. The Lions saw their winning streak snapped at three games.

Tono, who has won his last eight decisions, retired the first 10 batters he faced before yielding a one-out walk to Takumi Kuriyama in the fourth inning.

Marines 5, BayStars 0

At Chiba Marine Stadium, Yuji Yoshimi pitched six shutout innings and three relievers finished off a five-hitter as Chiba Lotte sent Yokohama to its third straight defeat and fourth in five games.

Yoshimi (2-0) allowed three hits, all singles, struck out four and walked none against his former team. Daisuke Miura (3-3) took the loss.

Toshiaki Imae had a two-run double that opened the scoring in the second and Saburo Omura hit a solo homer for a 3-0 lead in the sixth. Kazuya Fukuura belted a two-run drive in the eighth.

Hawks 4, Dragons 2

At Fukuoka’s Yahoo Dome, Tsuyoshi Wada struck out 10 and gave up one run over six innings and Nobuhiko Matsunaka had a tiebreaking RBI single in the fourth as Fukuoka Softbank rallied past Chunichi.

Hitoshi Tamura tied it at 1-all with his RBI double in the fourth followed by Matsunaka’s base hit to left for a 2-1 lead. Katsuki Yamazaki led off the fifth with a homer off Chen Wei-yin (3-5) and Yuichi Honda added an RBI triple in the eighth.

Wada (7-3) scattered five hits, and walked two for his third straight win.

Tigers 4, Fighters 2

At Sapporo Dome, Takahiro Arai went 3-for-3 with an RBI and two runs scored and Naoto Tsuru outpitched Yu Darvish with six effective innings as Hanshin beat Hokkaido Nippon Ham.

Pinch hitter Takashi Toritani broke a 2-2 tie with an RBI single off Darvish (4-4) in the sixth and Arai added a sacrifice fly in the seventh. Tsuru (1-1) allowed two runs on six hits for his first career win.

Darvish gave up four runs and nine hits over seven innings. Kyuji Fujikawa worked himself in and out of a bases-loaded jam in the ninth for his 12th save.

Swallows 11, Buffaloes 4

At Osaka’s Kyocera Dome, Shinya Miyamoto hit a tiebreaking single and slumping Tokyo Yakult erupted in a 16-hit attack to rout Orix, ending a 10-game winless streak and giving the team its first win since former head coach Junji Ogawa took over the manager’s job from Shigeru Takada.

After Aaron Guiel’s solo homer tied it at 2-2 in the sixth, Miyamoto, who went 2-for-3 with three RBIs, gave the Swallows the lead for good with his RBI single to left off Ryota Katsuki (1-1). Ryoji Aikawa drove in four runs and had three hits, including an RBI triple in the four-run sixth.

Yakult, which won only its third game this month, had a four-run seventh and added two more in the eighth. Masanori Ishikawa (1-6) allowed three runs in six innings to get his first win of the season in his 10th start. Hirotoshi Kitagawa had a two-run homer for the Buffaloes.

Eagles 3, Carp 2 (10)

At Sendai’s Kleenex Stadium, Motohiro Shima singled in the game-winning run with the bases loaded in the bottom of the 10th as Tohoku Rakuten rallied past Hiroshima.

Teppei Tsuchiya led off the 10th with his third hit of the night, moved to third on a pair of walks before scoring on Shima’s one-out single to center off Katsuhiro Nagakawa (1-2).

Tsuchiya had an RBI grounder followed by Norihiro Nakamura’s run-scoring single to tie it at 2-2 in the eighth. Shinichiro Koyama (2-1) pitched a perfect 10th.