CHIBA – Takayuki Kishi got the job done in his first game with the Pacific League-leading Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles, who beat the Chiba Lotte Marines 4-1 on Sunday.
Kishi, the former ace of the Seibu Lions, joined the Eagles in the offseason as a free agent but was scratched from his Opening Day start due to a bout of influenza. When he finally took the mound, Kishi (1-0) allowed a run over six innings. He surrendered four hits and two walks, while striking out four.
“I had not been pulling my weight (due to illness). The atmosphere on the team is really good and I didn’t want to mess that up,” the 32-year-old Kishi said.
Before 12,823 on a rainy day at Zozo Marine Stadium, the Eagles opened with a bang, Eigoro Mogi taking Yuki Karakawa deep to leadoff the first. Hiroaki Shimauchi’s two-out, bases-loaded single made it a 2-0 game, although the inning ended on the play when Japhet Amador made an ill-advised attempt to score from second.
“I was pretty nervous, but getting two runs in the first inning helped. I got into some jams but was able to pitch out of them,” said Kishi.
“The best thing was my being able to maintain my concentration and execute in the rain.”
Mogi singled in a run in the fourth, while the Marines scored their run in the sixth on a homer by Marines captain Daichi Suzuki.
Karakawa (0-2) gave up three runs in six innings on eight hits and five walks. He struck out three.
Rakuten lefty Yuki Matsui threw a 1-2-3 ninth to record his fourth save.
Buffaloes 2, Fighters 0
At Kyocera Dome, Yuki Nishi (1-0) threw a five-hit shutout to outduel Luis Mendoza (1-1), while Yuki Miyazaki had three hits, including a tie-breaking, fifth-inning single. Orix has now won five straight games for the first time in two years, while Hokkaido Nippon Ham has lost five straight for the first time since 2015.
Lions 4, Hawks 2
At MetLife Dome, Brian Wolfe (2-0) allowed a run in seven innings, while Ernesto Mejia homered for the second straight game and had an RBI single as Seibu beat Fukuoka SoftBank to return to .500.
Carp 6, Swallows 2
At Mazda Stadium, Allen Kuri (2-0) allowed two runs in seven innings, and league-leading Hiroshima overturned a one-run deficit with four unearned runs in the bottom of the seventh to hand Tokyo Yakult its fifth straight loss.
Tigers 4, Giants 3
At Koshien Stadium, Fumiya Hojo homered twice and drove in three runs, and Hiroki Uemoto’s eighth-inning homer broke a 3-3 tie as Hanshin beat Yomiuri. Side-arm lefty Masahiko Morifuku (0-1), acquired in the offseason by the Giants, took the loss.
BayStars 2, Dragons 1
At Nagoya Dome, Yokohama’s top draft pick last autumn, Haruhiro Hamaguchi (1-0), earned his first pro win, allowing an unearned run in 6⅓ innings, while Takayuki Kajitani overturned a one-run deficit against Chunichi with a two-run, sixth-inning homer.