NISHINOMIYA, HYOGO PREF. – Yoshio Itoi made Giants ace Tomoyuki Sugano pay for his biggest mistake, homering in the fifth inning to power the Hanshin Tigers to a 1-0 win over Yomiuri on Friday.
Sugano (5-3), who had won his last five decisions, had not allowed a runner through 4-1/3 innings at Koshien Stadium . But the right-hander fell behind 2-0 to the left-handed-hitting Itoi, who crushed a fat cutter and drove it into the right-field stands.
Tigers starter Yuta Iwasada (3-1) scattered six hits and a walk over seven innings with the help of eight strikeouts. Kentaro Kuwahara worked a 1-2-3 eighth, and closer Rafael Dolis worked around Casey McGehee’s ninth-inning leadoff single to record his 15th save.
“My opponent tonight (Sugano) is a great pitcher. Make no mistake about that,” the lefty Iwasada said. “I knew that when I got into a jam, I had to work carefully with my catcher to get out of trouble.”
After Itoi homered, an error, a single and a two-out walk to Iwasada loaded the bases, but Sugano got out of thejam with one of his 10 strikeouts. Sugano surrendered a leadoff triple in the sixth, but once more dug in deep to keep Kento Itohara from scoring.
Carp 6, Dragons 3
At Hiroshima’s Mazda Stadium, Daichi Osera (7-2) allowed three runs on five hits over the distance, while Hiroshima bludgeoned Chunichi starter Yuya Yanagi (2-4) in a six-hit, six-run second.
BayStars 14, Swallows 5
At Tokyo’s Jingu Stadium, Takayuki Kajitani had five of Yokohama’s 19 hits, homered twice, doubled twice, scored four runs and drove in four to power the BayStars to a come-from-behind win over Tokyo Yakult.
Fighters 8, Lions 5
At Tokorozawa’s MetLife Dome, Kensuke Kondo went 3-for-4 with a homer, two runs and three RBIs as second-place Hokkaido Nippon Ham beat Seibu to move within three games of the PL-leading Lions.
Buffaloes 9, Marines 5
At Kobe’s Hotto Motto Field, Masahiro Nishino’s three-run, fifth-inning double brought Orix to within a run against Chiba Lotte, and later scored the tying run on a sacrifice fly.
Koji Oshiro broke a 5-5 tie with an RBI single.
Marines starter Hideaki Wakui (4-4) allowed nine runs in 6-1/3 innings, while the Buffaloes’ bullpen allowed just one run over the final six frames.
Eagles 6, Hawks 4
At Fukuoka’s Yafuoku Dome, Nao Higashihama (1-5) gave up five runs in three innings, while Carlos Peguero homered and drove in four runs to lead Tohoku Rakuten past Fukuoka SoftBank.
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