Yakult Swallows 13 - Yomiuri Giants 7
W: Shohei Tateyama (10-2; 5 IP, 9 H, 8 K, 3 BB, 5 R, 5 ER)
L: Hisanori Takahashi (4-3; 2.1 IP, 8 H, 3 K, BB, 6 R, 5 ER)
Hisanori Takahashi was roughed up for 6 runs (5 earned) over 2.1 innings of work. And it all started in the bottom of the 1st when Norichika Aoki's 1-game replacement in center, Kazuki Fukuchi (3-for-5, 3B, HR, 3 R, 4 RBI), nailed a 2-run home run to give the Swallows a 2-0 lead.
The Giants got back one of those runs in top of the 2nd on Shigeyuki Furuki (2-for-4, RBI) run-scoring, infield single. A fielding error by Yoshiyuki Kamei in the bottom of the inning allowed Shohei Tateyama to score from second, erasing the run the Giants just scored.
In the bottom of the 3rd, things went from bad to worse for Takahashi: he gave up a lead-off single to Fukuchi, then saw him move to third on a stolen base and a ground out. A single by Aaron Guiel scored Fukuchi from third and another hit by Shinya Miyamoto (3-for-5, R) put runners on first and second with only 1 out. Tatsunori Hara had enough and brought in Takahiko Nomaguchi to relieve Takahashi. But he didn't do a particularly good job, giving up 2 straight singles that allowed 2 more runs to score (1 of the 2 runs scored with a little help from a throwing error). Nomaguchi would ultimately get out of the inning with a strike out / throw out double-play, but the worst was yet to come.
With Nomaguchi still on the mound for the Giants in the 4th, the Swallows' first 6 batters reached: an HBP to Yasushi Iihara (1-for-4, HBP, R, RBI); a single to Hiroyasu Tanaka (4-for-5, 2 2B, 3 R); a 2-run double to Fukuchi; a walk to Jamie D'Antona (1-for-4, BB, R, RBI); an RBI single by Guiel; and a single by Miyamoto to load the bases. Ryoji Aikawa's (1-for-3, BB, 2 RBI) sac fly made the score 10-1. An out later, Tateyama helped himself once more with a 2-out, RBI single to right. Shota Kimura spelled Nomaguchi after that and struck out Iihara for the final out of the inning.
The Giants would close the gap a bit in the top of the 5th on an RBI single by Tetsuya Matsumoto (1-for-5, R, RBI) and a 3-run home run by Michihiro Ogasawara (2-for-5, 2 HR, 2 R, 5 RBI). Singles by Alex Ramirez (1-for-5) and Kamei (2-for-5, R) with only 1 out gave the Giants some hope for an even bigger inning, but Tateyama settled down and struck out the final two batters of the inning. In the bottom half of the 5th the Swallows scored another run on D'Antona's 1-out RBI single to right.
Heading into the top of the 8th, down by 7, Ogasawara hit his second home run of the game, a 2-run shot off Ryota Igarashi. And in the bottom half of the inning, the Swallows answered with a lead-off homer off of Guiel's bat.
The Giants went down in order in the 9th and the Swallows pulled off a 13-7 victory.
The Swallows outhit the Giants, 20-13. ... Ogasawara has now hit 20 or more home runs in his last 5 seasons. ... The Giants were on a 5-game winning streak prior to the game. ... Norichika Aoki was "benched" for the game.
Giants: 9 LOB, 1 DP
Swallows: 7 LOB, 2 DP
Time: 3h 41m
Chunichi Dragons 6 - Hanshin Tigers 1
W: Takashi Ogasawara (4-1; 5.2 IP, 5 H, 2 K, 2 BB, R, ER)
L: Shinobu Fukuhara (3-8; 5 IP, 5 H, 2 K, BB, 3 R, 3 ER)
Takashi Ogasawara helped his own cause with a clutch, 2-out, 2-run single in the top of the 2nd. Kazuhiro Wada's (1-for-5, HR, R, RBI) 20th home run of the season in the top of the 5th gave the Dragons a little more breathing room.
The Tigers would finally score a run in the bottom of the 5th off Ogasawara on Mitsunobu Takahashi's (1-for-1, RBI) pinch-hit, 2-out, run-scoring single with runners on first and second.
The Dragons got 2 men on in the 6th with 2 out, but failed to push a run home. And while the Dragons didn't take advantage of every scoring chance they had after that -- they left the bases loaded in the 7th with only 1 out and had runners on first and second with 1 out in the 8th before Hirokazu Ibata (1-for-5) grounded into an inning-ending double-play -- they did still score 3 more runs over the final 3 innings of the game: a solo homer by Hidenori (2-for-2, HR, R, 2 RBI) in the 7th, an RBI single by Hirenori in the 8th, and a solo home run by Masahiko Morino (2-for-4, BB, HR, R, RBI) in the 9th.
The Tigers did have one other chance to put some runs on the board in the bottom of the 8th. Both Kentaro Sekimoto (0-for-3) and Kodai Sakurai (1-for-2, 2 BB) walked to start the inning with Takuya Asao on the mound for the Dragons. But Asao then bore down and retired the next three batters to hold the Tigers to just 1 run.
The Dragons outhit the Tigers, 14-6. ... Tanishige appeared in his 2,328th game as a catcher, good for second on the All-Time list. ... Wada reached 20 home runs for the first time since 2005.
Dragons: 8 LOB, 2 DP
Tigers: 8 LOB, 1 DP
Time: 3h 19m
Yokohama Bay Stars 6 - Hiroshima Carp 1
W: Hayato Terahara (2-3; 9 IP, 4 H, 9 K, BB, R, ER)
L: Yuki Saito (5-7; 6 IP, 6 H, 2 K, BB, 3 R, 3 ER)
The Bay Stars took an early 2-0 lead in the top of the first on a 2-run slam by Shuichi Murata (1-for-4, HR, R, 2 RBI). They tacked on another run in the fourth on Takahiro Saeki (2-for-4, R) led off the inning with a single and then latter stole home from third. And a pinch-hit, 2-out, 3-run shot by Dan Johnson (1-for-1, HR, R, 3 RBI) in the 7th gave the Bay Stars 6-0 lead.
Meanwhile, Hayato Terahara was tossing a great game for the Bay Stars, scattering only 2 hits through 8 innings of work. But Terahara ran into some problems in the bottom of the 9th. He gave up a lead-off, pinch-hit, double to Go Kida (1-for-1, 2B, R) and an infield single to Masafumi Suenaga (2-for-4), putting runners on the corners. One batter later, Soichiro Amaya's (0-for-4, RBI) ground out to second allowed Kida to score from third. Terahara then struck Kenta Kurihara to record his first complete game of the season.
The Bay Stars outhit the Carp, 9-4. ... The Carp have now lost 5 game in a row. ... The Bay Stars have won 4 in a row.
Bay Stars: 5 LOB, 1 DP
Carp: 3 LOB, 1 DP
Time: 2h 47m
Seibu Lions 5 - Rakuten Eagles 0
W: Hideaki Wakui (9 IP, 5 H, 12 K, 3 BB, 0 R, 0 ER)
L: Ryohei Isaka (7.2 IP, 11 H, 2 K, BB, 5 R, 5 ER)
Yoshihito Ishii's (2-for-4, 2B, R, RBI) 2-out, run-scoring double in the bottom of the 4th gave the Lions a 1-0 lead. Seibu had the bases loaded in the bottom of the 5th with 1 out, but managed only a run on Takumi Kuriyama's (2-for-4, 3B, R, RBI) single; the inning ended with the next batter when Hiroyuki Nakajima (1-for-4, R) grounded into a double play.
A sac fly by Ginjiro (1-for-2, RBI) in the 7th and a 2 out, 2-run double by G.G. Sato (1-for-4, 2B, 2 RBI) with runners on second and third in the bottom of the 8th put the Lions up 5-0.
Hideaki Wakui tossed a complete game shut-out against the Eagles, holding them to just 5 hits over 9 innings. The Eagles did threaten twice against Wakui, putting runners on first and second in the 7th with 1 out, and runners on second and third with 2 out.
The Lions outhit the Eagles 11-5. ... All 12 of Wakui's strike outs came after the third inning.
Eagles: 7 LOB, 1 DP
Lions: 5 LOB, 2 DP
Time: 2h 50m
Orix Buffaloes 3 - Chiba Lotte Marines 2
W: Satoshi Komatsu (1-5; 9 IP, 5 H, 8 K, 3 BB, HBP, 2 R, ER)
L: Yoshihiro Ito (2-3; .1 IP, 2 H, 0 K, 0 BB, 2 R, 2 ER)
Both Satoshi Komatsu and Yoshihisa Naruse (7 IP, 8 H, 13 K, BB, R, ER) had solid starts; the differences came down to the bullpen, or rather, that the Marines had to dip into their's.
A fielding error on Kazuya Fukuura's (1-for-3) sac bunt in the 1st by Komatsu helped load the bases with no out. Shoitsu Ohmatsu (1-for-4, RBI) then gave the Marines a 1-0 lead with his single to right. Komatsu then settled down and struck out Saburo (1-for-4, 3B, R) and got Tomoya Satozaki (1-for-4, 2B) to ground into a double play.
The Buffaloes would tie the game at 1 in the bottom of the 2nd on Naoyuki Ohmura's (2-for-4, 2 2B, 2 RBI) RBI double. In the bottom of the bottom of the 3rd Orix put runners on second and third with 1 out, but neither Jose Fernandez (1-for-4, 2B) nor Alex Cabrera (1-for-4) could get the job done, striking out and grounding out respectively.
Lotte pulled ahead in the top of the 4th when Toshiaki Imae (1-for-3, RBI) hit a tie-breaking single with runners on first and third and 2 out. But the Marines' 2-1 lead would only last until the bottom of the 8th when their bullpen would drop the game.
Yoshihiro Ito relieved Naruse in the bottom of the 8th with the hopes that he'd be able to hold onto the 1-run lead. Unfortunately for Naruse, Ito gave up the game-tying run on Ohmura's RBI double. Tadahiro Ogino followed Ito out of the pen and gave up another hit, putting runners on first and third, but then struck out Shinji Shimoyama (0-for-3) for the second out of the inning. A bad throw by Tadahito Iguchi on a grounder to second allowed the tie-breaking run to score from third.
Komatsu allowed a 1-out double to Satozaki in the top of the 9th, but then retired the final two batters of the inning for his first win of the season.
The Buffaloes outhit the Marines, 12-5. ... Komatsu finally won his first game (in 8 tries) of the season. ... Ohmura needs only 4 more doubles to get to 300. ... The Marines have now lost 6 games in a row.
Marines: 6 LOB, 2 DP
Buffaloes: 10 LOB, 0 DP
Time: 3h 0m
Nippon Ham Fighters 9 - Softbank Hawks 1
W: Yu Darvish (11-3; 9 IP, 4 H, 9 K, BB, R, ER)
L: Yoshiaki Fujioka (3-4; 4.2 IP, 8 H, 2 K, BB, HBP, 4 R, 3 ER)
Yoshiaki Fujioka ran into some trouble in the top of the 2nd when he hit Shinji Takahashi (1-for-3, HBP, R, RBI) to start the inning. The next batter, Terrmel Sledge (1-for-5, 2B, R, RBI), drove him Takahashi home with a double to right. After moving over to third on a ground out, Sledge then scored on Tomochika Tsuboi's (2-for-2, RBI) single to center. Fujioka settled after that and retired the next two batters to get out of the inning without further damage.
In the bottom half of the inning, the Hawks managed to score their one and only run of the game off Yu Darvish on Nobuhiko Matsunaka's (1-for-4, HR, R, RBI) 14th home run of the season.
The Fighters scored single runs in the 3rd (run-scoring ground out by Takahashi), 5th (RBI single by Atsunori Inaba) and 8th (RBI single by Eiichi Koyano) innings to make the score 5-1. But the Fighters weren't done yet. They put up a 4-spot in the top of the 9th when Makoto Sato suddenly forgot how to get anyone out: he gave up a lead-off single to Makoto Kaneko (2-for-4, R); walked Kensuke Tanaka (0-for-3, 2 BB, 2 R); gave up a run on an RBI single by Yoshio Itoi (3-for-5, R, RBI); then gave up 3 more runs on Inaba (3-for-5, 2B, HR, 2 R, 4 RBI) 12th home run of the season. Sato walked the next batter, but got Sledge to ground into a double play for the first 2 outs of the inning. Koyano (2-for-5, RBI) singled, but that would be it as Sato got Hichori Morimoto (1-for-3) to ground out to third to end the inning.
Darvish retired the last 9 batters of the game for his 11th win and 5th complete game of the season.
The Fighters outhit the Hawks, 15-4. ... Darvish struck out 4 straight batters at one point. ... Since August 2007, Darvish is 8-0 against the Hawks. ... Hiroki Kokubo left the game prior to the start of the 8th due to lower back pain.
Fighters: 7 LOB, 2 DP
Hawks: 4 LOB, 0 DP
Time: 3h 2m