FUKUOKA – Yuki Yanagita erupted for five RBIs as the Fukuoka SoftBank Hawks hammered the Chiba Lotte Marines for the second straight day on Saturday, winning 14-3 to stay at the top of the Pacific-League standings.
Yanagita, who had four RBIs on Friday in the Hawks’ 11-3 rout of the Mariners, was again at the center of SoftBank’s offense. He singled in a run in both the first and second innings before a three-run blast over the left-center field wall in the third off Lotte rookie Ryota Sekiya (4-4).
Hawks starter Kodai Senga (11-1) continued his impressive form, winning his third straight start and holding Lotte to two solo homers over six innings. The right-hander allowed five hits, two walks and hit a batter in a 99-pitch effort.
Sekiya surrendered a career-worst nine runs over four frames, struggling for control. He issued five walks and 11 hits in a 104-pitch outing. The right-hander gave up a bases-loaded walk in the first to hand the Hawks a 2-0 lead, allowed three runs in the second and another homer, this time to Seiichi Uchikawa in the third, after Yanagita went deep.
Yanagita could not add to his hits in his next three at-bats but SoftBank belted out five more runs off Lotte relievers, Nobuhiro Matsuda hitting a solo shot off Yasuhiro Tanaka in the sixth and Akira Nakamura off Taiki Tojo in the eighth for two runs to cap the rout.
Eagles 7, Buffaloes 6
At Sendai’s Kobo Stadium, back-to-back solo homers from Japhet Amador and Carlos Peguero tied the game in the eighth for Tohoku Rakuten before Orix’s Takahiro Matsuba (4-9) threw a one-out wild pitch to surrender the go-ahead run.
Fighters 7, Lions 4
At Tokorozawa’s Seibu Prince Dome, Brandon Laird hit a fifth-inning grand slam to rally Hokkaido Nippon Ham from a 4-1 decifit off Seibu’s Kona Takahashi (4-11).
Shohei Otani and Sho Nakata both went deep in the ninth to add two runs as the Fighters kept up the pace with PL-leading SoftBank.
Carp 11, Dragons 4 (10)
At Nagoya Dome, Hiroshima scored seven runs in the 10th inning off Chunichi’s Daisuke Sobue (0-3) after the right-hander got two outs without a runner.
The Carp scored two on three singles and two walks before Takahiro Arai hit a grand slam and Seiya Suzuki went deep, leading them to their fourth straight win.
The Dragons lost their fourth straight.
Swallows 5, Tigers 2
At Koshien Stadium, Masanori Ishikawa (6-7) was just one out shy of a complete game as the lefty held Hanshin to two runs on six hits and two walks over 8-2/3 innings, while Wladimir Balentien belted a three-run homer as Tokyo Yakult won its fourth straight game.
BayStars 7, Giants 3
At Yokohama Stadium, Yokohama’s Jose Lopez broke a 3-3 in the fifth with an RBI double off Kan Otake (5-3) and Shun Yamaguchi went the distance, allowing three runs on four hits to send Yomiuri to its fourth straight defeat.