NISHINOMIYA, HYOGO PREF. – Masahiro Tanaka pitched his first complete game of the season, leading the Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles to a 3-2 win against the Orix Buffaloes on Friday.
Buffaloes starter Park Chan Ho, Asia’s all-time leader in wins in the majors, gave up three earned runs in 6? innings in his Japan debut at Koshien Stadium.
Former major leaguer Kazuo Matsui hit his first homer for Rakuten in the first inning.
Hawks 3, Lions 2 (11)
At Yahoo Dome, Alex Cabrera hit a walkoff home run for Fukuoka Softbank in the 11th as the Hawks edged Seibu.
Fighters 4, Marines 1
At Sapporo Dome, Masaru Takeda allowed one run in seven innings to lead Hokkaido Nippon Ham to a win over Chiba Lotte.
Giants 4, Carp 4 (9)
At Mazda Stadium, Yomiuri wasted a strong outing from its highly prized rookie Hirokazu Sawamura, tying Hiroshima.
The game did not go into extra innings with the 3-hour, 30-minute limit rule for this season.
The Giants went up 4-3 in the top of the ninth with Ryota Wakiya’s RBI double, but Eishin Soyogi tied the game in the bottom half with a run-scoring single.
Alex Ramirez gave Sawamura, the 23-year-old fireballer from Chuo University, a boost in the opening frame, taking Dioni Soriano deep for a three-run shot, his second homer in as many days.
Sawamura coasted through the Carp lineup until the seventh, when Takahiro Iwamura reached on an error by third baseman Rusty Ryal. Iwamoto scored on a triple by Soichiro Amaya, who came home on a sac fly by Tomonori Maeda.
Sawamura left after two outs, having thrown 82 pitches without walking a runner. The two runs he allowed were unearned.
Tigers 5, Dragons 4
At Nagoya Dome, Hanshin edged Chunichi in a game in which longtime star Tomoaki Kanemoto saw his 1,766 consecutive games streak, the second-longest in Japanese baseball history, come to an end. He stepped to the plate as a pinch hitter in the eighth inning but didn’t complete the appearance as a teammate was tagged out to end the inning on a stolen-base attempt.
Former Hiroshima Carp infielder Sachio Kinugasa holds Japanese baseball’s all-time consecutive games streak at 2,215.
BayStars 9, Swallows 7
At Tokyo’s Jingu Stadium, Terrmel Sledge homered in his third straight game as Yokohama kept Tokyo Yakult winless.
Sledge hit a two-run shot off Shohei Tateyama in the fifth, his fifth homer of the season, that gave the BayStars a 5-3 lead.
Brett Harper, Yuki Yoshimura and Tatsuhiko Kinjo also homered for Yokohama, which has a 3-1 start to the season. The Swallows are 0-3.
The Fukuoka Softbank Hawks’ Toshiya Sugiuchi qualified for domestic free agency on Friday after reaching eight years worth of service with the top team.
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