FUKUOKA – Ernesto Mejia hit his league-leading 30th home run in a 3-for-4 outing in support of Ryoma Nogami, who yielded three runs over strong seven innings in the Seibu Lions’ 6-3 win over the Fukuoka Softbank Hawks on Sunday afternoon.
A day after Softbank booked a spot in the Climax Series by securing at least third place in the standings, hits were at a premium for the Pacific League leader, which could manage just six to the Seibu’s 13.
Takeya Nakamura helped spark the rally with a two-run go-ahead double off reliever Ryota Igarashi (1-1) in a three-run eighth at Yafuoku Dome.
Mejia went deep for a solo blast off Kenji Otonari with one out in the fourth to tie it 1-1 before Softbank pulled ahead briefly on a Toru Hosokawa RBI double in the bottom half. Hosokawa and Nobuhiro Matsuda hit solo shots for Softbank.
Nogami (7-8) scattered six hits, struck out five and walked none. Tomomi Takahashi had a perfect ninth for his 26th save. The Hawks saw their winning streak snapped at four games.
Buffaloes 8, Fighters 4
At Kyocera Dome, Wily Mo Pena rapped out four hits, coming a triple shy of the cycle and Tomotaka Sakaguchi drove in five runs on two hits as second-place Orix downed Hokkaido Nippon Ham. Naoyuki Uwasawa (7-8) was roughed up for five runs in four innings.
Shohei Otani hit his 10th homer, a solo blast, for the Fighters — making it the first time in Japanese baseball that a player has notched double digits in home runs and wins in the same season. The right-hander posted his 10th win as a pitcher on Aug. 26.
Eagles 4, Marines 0
At QVC Marine Field, Wataru Karashima (8-11) matched a career high in wins en route to pitching a two-hitter in his first career shutout and Shintaro Masuda drove in all the runs on a three-run homer and solo blast in Tohoku Rakuten’s whitewash of Chiba Lotte. Sixth-year lefty Yuta Kimura (0-1) lost in his first career start.
Dragons 2, Tigers 0
At Nagoya Dome, Yudai Kawai (6-6) threw seven scoreless innings in a pitching duel against Yuta Iwasada (1-3) and helped his own cause with a second-inning RBI single as Chunichi extended its winning streak to four. Hanshin was swept in three games for the first time this season.
Swallows 10, Giants 3
At Jingu Stadium, Wladimir Balentien hit a three-run blast in the opening frame to notch 30 home runs for the fourth consecutive year since arriving in Japan and Tetsuto Yamada had a fourth-inning leadoff shot among his three hits and three RBIs to power last-place Tokyo Yakult in a rout over CL leader Yomiuri.
BayStars 11, Carp 4
At Yokohama Stadium, Takehiro Ishikawa had a two-run single and catcher Toshiki Kurobane followed with a two-run double as Yokohama rallied past second-place Hiroshima in a five-run seventh in a rout that snapped a three-game skid. Yuliesky Gurriel and Tony Blanco each homered for Yokohama in the 19-hit onslaught.