Chunichi Dragons 2 - Yokohama Bay Stars 0
Weiyin Chen (9 IP, 5 H, 5 K, 2 BB, 0 R) tossed a complete game shut-out to give the Dragons a 2-0 victory of the Bay Stars. Ryan Glynn (7 IP, 7 H, 2 K, BB, 2 R, 2 ER) did a decent job keeping his team in the game, but wasn't overpowering.
The Bay Stars couldn't get much of any offense going against Chen. In fact, the offense couldn't do much of anything against Chen until a lead-off single by Takehiro Ishikawa (1-for-3, BB) in the bottom of the 7th. Shuichi Murata went 1-for-3 with a walk.
The Dragons scored both of their runs Kazuhiro Wada's (1-for-3, BB, HR, R, 2 RBI) 2-run shot in the top of the 4th. Kazuhiro Ibata (2-for-4), Kei Nomoto (2-for-4), and Keiji Oyama (2-for-4) picked up 2 hits a piece.
The crowd gave Kimiyasu Kudo a nice round of applause when he entered the game as a relief pitcher in the 9th. He didn't give up any runs, but did surrender 2 hits. ... Chen needed 113 pitches for the complete game.
Time: 3h 14m
Yomiuri Giants 4 - Hanshin Tigers 0
After being shut-out three games in a row, the Giants have now won 3 games in a row. And for the second game in a row, Hayato Sakamoto played a big part in a Giants win by going 2-for-4 with 2 RBIs (he was responsible for pushing across the first run of the game in the second with 2 out and the third run of the game in the 6th with 1 out). Michihiro Ogasawara (1-for-4, BB, 2 RBI) drove in the other two runs in the 5th when he hit a single with runners on second and third.
The Tigers only managed to scatter 5 hits over 9 innings. The best chance the Tigers had to score some runs came in the bottom of the 8th when they managed to load the bases on an error, single, and a walk and only 1 out. Neither Kentaro Sekimoto (1-for-4) nor Takeshi Toritani (1-for-4) could get the big hit to put the Tigers on the board. The Giants kept Tomoaki Kanemoto hitless in 4 trips to the plate.
Dicky Gonzalez had a solid game for the Giants, tossing 7 shut-out innings while giving up 4 hits; he also struck out 5. Gonzalez also had a nice day with the bat, going 1-for-2 with a run scored. His heads-up base-running in the 5th (he ran from first to third on a single to center) helped set up Ogasawara's 2-run single. Kai-Wen Cheng started for the Tigers and gave up 4 runs (all earned) on 7 hits, 3 strike outs and a walk.
Seung-Yeop Lee is starting to show some signs of life. He went 0-for-4 but hit the ball pretty hard most of the night. In particular, he drove a pitch in the to deep center that ended up being an out only because Norihiro Akahoshi made a great leaping catch up against the wall.
Sakamoto is now batting .402 on the year. ... The Tigers have now lost 11 straight games (with a tie sandwiched in between) against the Giants. This is the first time since 1940-1941 that a team has dropped 11 games in a row. ... Kanemoto played in his 1,500 consecutive game.
Time: 3h 7m
Yakult Swallows 3 - Hiroshima Carp 2
Norichika Aoki went 2-for-4 and hit his second home run of the season, breaking a 2-2 tie; since getting hit in the head, Aoki is now 4-for-7. Shinya Miyamoto (1-for-4, R, RBI) was responsible for getting the Swallows on the board first with an RBI single in the 5th. Jaime D'Antona (1-for-4, 2B, RBI) followed a batter later with a game-tying RBI double.
Kenta Kurihara (1-for-4, R, 2 RBI) drilled his 4th home run of the season in the 5th, a 2-run shot that gave the Carp a 2-0 lead. He had a chance to drive in a couple more runs in the 8th when he struck out with runners on first and second and 2 out. Soichiro Amaya went 2-for-3 with 2 walks and a run scored.
Shun Takaichi (6 IP, 4 H, 4 K, BB, 2 R, 2 ER) started the game for the Swallows, but it was Masao Kida that got the win (his second straight in relief). Chang-Yong Lim recorded his 7th save with a perfect 9th. Takahiro Aoki (5 IP, 6 H, 3 K, 2 BB, 2 R, 2 ER) got the start for the Carp, but it was the second pitcher in relief, Ryuji Yokoyama, that took the loss.
Time: 2h 52m
Nippon Ham Fighters 6 - Seibu Lions 5
The Lions held a 5-2 lead going into the bottom of the 5th when the Fighters managed to score 3 runs over their next 2 half innings.
Takeya Nakamura had a big day for the Lions, going 3-for-4 with 2 walks, a double, 2 homers, 2 runs, and 4 RBI. Takumi Kuriyama (2-for-6, 2B, R) and Yoshihito Ishii (2-for-3) picked up 2 hits a piece.
The Fighters countered with big performances by Terrmel Sledge (3-for-5, HR, R, 3 RBI) and Makoto Kaneko (3-for-5, HR, R, 2 RBI). But it was Atsunori Inaba's (2-for-4, BB, IBB, 2B, HR, 2 R, RBI) walk-off home run in the bottom of the 12th that pushed the game in the W column for the Fighters.
Both starting pitchers tanked:
Masamitsu Hirano SEI 7 IP, 8 H, 6 K, 2 BB, 5 R, 5 ER
Ryo Sakakibara HAM 6 IP, 8 H, 2 K, BB, HBP, 5 R, 5 ER
The Fighters went through 6 pitchers and Keisuke Tanimoto ultimately ended up with the win. The Lions third (and final) pitcher in relief, Chikara Onodera, ended up with the loss.
The Lions sent up a pinch-hitter for Hiram Bocachica in the fourth after he complained of tightness in his left thigh.
Time: 4h 11m
Rakuten Eagles 8 - Orix Buffaloes 4
The Eagles need arms in the rotation to help carry them through while Masahiro Tanaka recovers from a tired arm. Darrell Rasner was up to the challenge on Sunday; he tossed 7 innings while giving up 2 runs (both earned) on 6 hits, 1 strike out and 3 walks. But since the offense didn't take off until the bottom of the 8th, it was Shinichiro Koyama that ultimately got the win in relief for the Eagles. Mamoru Kishida (7.1 IP, 7 H, 3 K, BB, HBP, 3 R, 3 ER) suffered the loss for the Buffaloes.
The Eagles ruined a two chances for big innings: after pushing across a run in the first, the Eagles had runners on first and second with only 1 out and couldn't do any more damage; the Eagles couldn't score any runs when they loaded the bases in the 7th with 1 out. But fortunately for the Eagles, the third time was a charm: they sent 11 batters to the plate in the 8th and scored 7 runs on 5 hits and 2 walks.
Rick Short (1-for-3, HBP, HR, R, 3 RBI) capped off the Eagles' offense with a 3-run shot in the 8th. Takeshi Yamasaki went 2-for-4 with a double, a run, and 2 RBI.
Naoyuki Ohmura (1-for-4, BB, 2B, 2 RBI) gave the Buffaloes some hope when he hit a 2-run double in the top of the 9th with 2 out, but the rally would end two batters later when Jose Fernandez (0-for-4, BB) lined out to second for the final out of the inning and with runners on first and second. Hirotoshi Kitagawa went 2-for-4 with a double and an RBI.
The Eagles are now 7 games over .500, the best mark in the team's history.
Time: 3h 19m
Softbank Hawks 7 - Lotte Marines 2
Yoshihisa Naruse (3.1 IP, 10 H, K, BB, 5 R, 3 ER) got the start for the Marines and had another rough outing. Toshiya Sugiuchi (7 IP, 4 H, 8 K, 4 BB, 2 R, 2 ER) picked up his third victory of the season.
The Lotte offense managed to score only 2 runs, both coming on solo shots: Saburo Ohmura (1-for-3, BB, HR, R, ER) in the 2nd and Chase Lambin (1-for-3, HR) in the 7th. Tadahito Iguchi went 1-for-4.
The Hawks pounded out 14 hits and 6 of the players in the starting line-up recorded 2 hits a piece: Munenori Kawasaki (2-for-5, 2 R), Satoru Morimoto (2-for-4, RBI), Nobuhiko Matsunaka (2-for-4, R, RBI), Yuya Hasegawa (2-for-4, 2 R, RBI), Jose Ortiz (2-for-3, IBB, 2 2B, R, RBI), and Katsuki Yamazaki (2-for-4, 2 2B, R). Hidenori Tanoue went 1-for-4 with a double and 2 RBI.
This was Inaba's second walk-off of his career, and first since 2001 when he was with the Swallows. ... All three games in the series went into extra innings.
Time: 3h 3m