NPB games, news of July 17, 2019

Pacific League

Fighters 4, Hawks 0

At Kitakyushu Stadium, Kohei Arihara, the only starting pitcher FIghters manager Hideki Kuriyama trusts to face a lineup more than twice, struck out seven, while allowing four base runners over eight innings to improve to 10-4 as Nippon Ham completed a sweep of league-leading SoftBank.

The Hawks opted for a short starter, throwing Roberto Suarez (1-4), and he allowed one run in four innings but took the unlucky loss.

Game highlights are HERE.

Lions 4, Marines 3

At MetLife Dome, Seibu’s Keisuke Honda (5-3) served up three double play balls, allowing him to escape a couple of jams and allow only a run over seven innings in a win over Lotte.

But while Honda was able to get two straight comebackers to escape a no-out, bases-loaded pickle in the second, Mariners starter Kazuya Ojima (0-3) surrendered four runs in a similar predicament in the fifth, and Seibu’s bullpen held on for the win.

Game highlights are HERE.

Eagles 7, Buffaloes 3

At Kyocera Dome, Orix squandered a three-run first against Wataru Karashima (4-2), who lasted five innings, while four Rakuten relievers kept the Buffaloes from mounting a comeback.

Kohei “K” Suzuki got the short start, allowing two runs over 2-1/3 innings, but his relief was ineffective. Jabari Blash homered, reached base four times and scored twice for the Eagles.

Alan Busenitz and Frank Herrmann each worked a scoreless inning of relief for the Eagles, while lefty closer Yuki Matsui struck out two in a 1-2-3 ninth in a non-save situation.

Game highlights are HERE.

Central League

Swallows 5, Giants 4

At Jingu Stadium, HIroki Yamada (2-0) allowed three runs over five-plus innings, Norichika Aoki hit a three-run homer and Yakult’s bullpen pitched out of trouble for four-straight innings to avoid a sweep at the hands of Yomiuri.

Giants shortstop Hayato Sakamoto hit two homers and drove in three runs. He now leads the CL with his 28th. He is now 13 shy of the NPB record of home runs by a shortstop, set my Masaru Uno of the Chunichi Dragons in 1985 at home run-happy Nagoya Stadium.

Top 5 seasons, home runs by shorstops

Masaru Uno41DragonsCL1985
Masaru Uno37DragonsCL1984
Kazuo Matsui36LionsPL2002
Takahiro Ikeyama34SwallowsCL1989
Kazuo Matsui33LionsPL2003

BayStars 3, Carp 1

At Yokohama Stadium, struggling Hiroshima put four runners on in the first inning, but scored only one run as five DeNA pitchers combined to allow three hits and five walks, while striking out 10.

Dragons 6, Tigers 4

At Toyohashi Stadium, five scoreless innings from Chunichi’s bullpen, paved the way for two eighth-inning runs off Kyuji Fujikawa (4-1) to break a 4-4 tie in a win over Hanshin.

A Yohei Oshima leadoff double, a Zoilo Almonte walk, and a two-run Toshiki Abe triple broke the tie as the Dragons won their seventh-straight game, their longest winning streak in four years.


Dragons lose CL batting leader Takahashi to hand injury

CL batting leader and captain Shuhei Takahashi ruptured a ligament in the little finger of his right hand on Tuesday while sliding back into first base on a pickoff throw, and was deactivated on Wednesday. A .255 career hitter, Takahashi was leading the league in batting with a .319 in his second full season.

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