Baseball / Japanese Baseball

Solid pitching from Tsuyoshi Wada, big hits from veterans carry Hawks past Buffaloes

Kyodo

Pitcher Tsuyoshi Wada worked six innings, Seiichi Uchikawa doubled in two runs, and Yuki Yanagita homered in his second game back from rehab to lead the Fukuoka SoftBank Hawks to a 5-1 come-from-behind win over the Orix Buffaloes on Thursday in the Pacific League.

Wada (4-2) allowed a run in the first inning at Yafuoku Dome after a leadoff triple by Buffaloes captain Shuhei Fukuda. He allowed two hits and two walks while striking out four to earn the win.

After popping up to end the third inning with two on, Uchikawa’s fifth-inning double put the Hawks in front, and he scored on a Yurisbel Gracial double. Yanagita, who returned to duty on Wednesday for the first time since hurting his knee in April, homered in the seventh.

Yanagita, normally a middle-of-the-order hitter, is being eased back into action in the No. 2 spot in the SoftBank lineup. He walked twice in front of Uchikawa and the second time was the charm against Taiwan rookie Chang Yi (2-1).

“I didn’t hit the time before with someone on, so I wanted to do something,” Uchikawa said. “I think this is normal if one bats behind Yanagita, and I’m glad I could get a result.

“Considering the condition of Yanagita’s legs, a home run would have been better, since it would have allowed him to walk home, but he still scored from first. So I’m grateful to him for that.”

The 25-year-old Chang, who returned to pitching last season for the first time since he played in high school, walked four and gave up four hits. He surrendered three runs in 4-2/3 innings to take the loss.

Fighters 5, Lions 3

At Tokorozawa’s MetLife Dome, Ryo Watanabe and Kotaro Kiyomiya both hit two-run homers to lead Hokkaido Nippon Ham to a comeback victory over Seibu.

Eagles at Marines — late

CENTRAL LEAGUE

Dragons 7, Giants 4

At Nagoya Dome, Yohei Oshima scored three runs and Dayan Viciedo had three hits and a two-run homer to power Chunichi past Yomiuri.

Tigers 8, BayStars 0

At Osaka’s Kyocera Dome, Hanshin’s Atsushi Mochizuki (1-0) pitched six innings to earn his first career win, and three Tigers relievers completed the three-hit shutout victory over Yokohama.

Swallows 8, Carp 4 (7)

At Hiroshima’s Mazda Stadium, rain cut short Hiroshima’s comeback in the bottom of the seventh inning, handing Tokyo Yakult a win.

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