Taishi Ota tripled in two runs in the seventh inning to break a tie as the Yomiuri Giants snapped the Yokohama BayStars’ three-game winning streak with a 3-1 victory on Friday in the Central League.
BayStars starter Shoichi Ino (5-8) gave up a leadoff double to pinch hitter Yasuhiro Yamamoto in the seventh inning. A sacrifice and a groundout saw him reach third, before Ino walked Hayato Sakamoto. Ota then hit a liner to left-center off a hanging forkball on a full count.
“I just tried to get good contact and hope it traveled well,” said Ota, who came on to replace injured Hisayoshi Chono earlier in the game. “I thought he’d (Ino) come to finish me off with a forkball, I saw similar patterns during the game and I just tried to hang in.”
Ino worked one-hit frames from the second inning until the fifth, but Shuichi Murata hit a hanging 1-1 forkball over the left-center wall with one out in the sixth for his ninth homer of the season.
Ino allowed three runs on seven hits and four walks as he struck out seven over 6⅔ innings on 128 pitches.
The right-hander’s counterpart, Kan Otake (2-1), gave up the opening run in the third. Toshiro Miyazaki hit a one-out double, and although Yoshitomo Tsutsugo’s belting drive off the center-field wall only saw Miyazaki reach third, Jose Lopez hit a sacrifice fly to right to give Yokohama the upper hand.
But that was the only run Otake surrendered, the right-hander working around eight hits and two walks over seven frames while striking out six.
Yomiuri closer Hirokazu Sawamura allowed a single in the ninth but posted his CL-leading 22nd save.
Carp 8, Tigers 2
At Nishinomiya’s Koshien Stadium, Hiroshima’s Seiya Suzuki hit a bases-loaded single in the first to drive in two runs off Shintaro Fujinami (4-5) and Kris Johnson (9-5) held Hanshin to two unearned runs over seven innings.
Fujinami threw 161 pitches over eight innings, allowing all the runs, six earned, although he fanned 13.
Swallows 6, Dragons 3
At Jingu Stadium, Wladimir Balentien put Tokyo Yakult on the way to a comfortable win against Chunichi with a two-run double in the first and Yuhei Takai singled home during a three-run fifth.
Swallows starter Yoshihisa Naruse (3-2) allowed two runs in five-plus innings to earn his first win since April 12.
Fighters 12, Marines 3
At Sapporo Dome, Daikan Yoh homered during a seven-run first off Chiba Lotte’s Kota Futaki (5-6) and Shota Ono went deep twice to help Hokkaido Nippon Ham secure a 12th straight win and move into second place in the Pa League.
The Fighters’ Hirotoshi Takanashi (5-2) allowed three runs in seven frames.
Eagles 3, Hawks 2
At Fukuoka’s Yafuoku Dome, Tohoku Rakuten’s Takahiro Norimoto (9-4) tossed eight innings of two-run ball en route to matching a PL-high with his ninth win of the season.
Ginji Akaminai broke a 2-2 tie when he singled in the decisive run for the Eagles in the ninth.
Lions 8, Buffaloes 4
At Saitama’s Seibu Prince Dome, Tomoya Mori hit a two-run shot in the fifth to turn it around for Seibu off Orix’s Nobuyoshi Yamada (0-1).
Ernesto Mejia blasted his PL-leading 25th home run, while Takeya Nakamura and Hideto Asamura also went deep for the Lions.
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