Baseball / Japanese Baseball

PL ends scoreless tie in fifth, wraps up two-game NPB All-Star Series sweep

Kyodo

The Pacific League completed a two-game sweep of the NPB All-Star Series with a 5-1 win over the Central League on Saturday night.

While both teams scored early in the PL’s 7-6 win Friday at Kyocera Dome, the 13,760 spectators at Kumamoto Fujisakidai Stadium did not see a run until the top of the fifth inning, when the PL took a decisive 2-0 lead on back-to-back RBIs.

With Hanshin Tigers lefty Yuta Iwasada on the mound, Fukuoka SoftBank Hawks third baseman Nobuhiro Matsuda led off the inning with a double before reaching third on an error. Seibu Lions shortstop Sosuke Genda then drove in the opening run with a double to center field.

Hawks catcher Takuya Kai brought Genda home with a single to left field before Iwasada retired the next three batters.

“I’m glad my first All-Star game hit was a timely one,” said Genda, who was named MVP of the game after going 1-for-3 with one RBI.

Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles infielder Toshiaki Imae put the PL up 3-0 with an RBI single in the seventh inning.

SoftBank outfielder Yuki Yanagita and Lion second baseman Hideto Asamura extended the lead to 5-0 with RBIs in the eighth, before Hanshin Tigers infielder Kento Itohara finally put the CL on the board with an RBI double in the bottom of the inning.

Orix Buffaloes lefty Andrew Albers picked up the win after retiring six of the seven batters he faced over two innings, while Iwasada was tagged with the loss.

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