Zach Neal might have had an image of how his first start in Japan might go, but it's unlikely there were Chiba Lotte Marines standing on every base with one out in the second inning in his version.

But a grounder to second and a strikeout got everything back on track for the new Seibu Lions pitcher, who walked off a winner on a day he'd been waiting on for a few years.

"The whole day itself was a pretty cool experience," Neal told the Japan Times on Saturday at Tokyo Dome, where the Lions were facing the Hokkaido Nippon Ham Fighters. "Just having my first start here in Japan, and the road that I've been on to get here has been long, but this is something that I've always wanted to do.