Rookie relievers Haruki Omichi and Ryoji Kuribayashi each worked a scoreless inning on Saturday to preserve the Hiroshima Carp’s 4-2 Central League win over the Yomiuri Giants.
Starting pitcher Aren Kuri (3-0) allowed two runs, one earned, over seven innings, while leadoff man Ryosuke Kikuchi singled three times, stole a base, scored three runs and singled in the game-winning run.
Omichi took over in the eighth at Hiroshima’s Mazda Stadium and worked a 1-2-3 eighth against the meat of the defending league champs’ order. The Carp’s third draft pick last year, Omichi needed just nine pitches to notch his fifth straight scoreless outing.
Kuribayashi, the club’s top draft pick last autumn, worked around a one-out walk to record his fifth save.
Kuri, who contributed to the Giants’ first run by making one of two Carp errors in the first inning, walked two and surrendered three hits while striking out five.
Giants’ starter Shosei Togo (1-1) was chased with two outs in the third inning. The right-hander allowed nine hits and walked two and was charged with all four Carp runs.
At Yokohama Stadium, Hanshin Tigers starter Koyo Aoyagi (2-0) worked seven scoreless innings in a 4-0 win over the Yokohama DeNA BayStars. Jerry Sands iced the game with his fifth home run, a two-run ninth-inning shot.
At Nagoya’s Vantelin Dome, Munetaka Murakami put the Tokyo Yakult Swallows ahead with a two-run fourth-inning home run before the Chunichi Dragons came back with a run in the sixth to complete the scoring in their 2-2 tie.
At Sendai’s Rakuten Seimei Park Miyagi, Akira Nakamura’s second RBI single for the defending Pacific League champion Fukuoka SoftBank Hawks erased a one-run seventh-inning deficit and earned an 8-8 nine-inning tie with the PL-leading Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles.
At Chiba’s Zozo Marine Stadium, the Chiba Lotte Marines’ Leonys Martin had three hits and two solo home runs in a 6-2 win over the Saitama Seibu Lions.
At Osaka’s Kyocera Dome, Yuki Nomura’s ninth-inning RBI double snapped a 2-2 tie in the Hokkaido Nippon Ham Fighters’ 5-2 win over the Orix Buffaloes.
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