There was some superb pitching and some tight games, one where a player who entered as a pinch-runner blasted a sayonara home run, while C.C. Mercedes gave the Yakult Swallows the bends, and Adam Walker went off against the Orix Buffaloes.
Dragons 2, Lions 1: At Seibu Dome, Sosuke Genda broke up a scoreless game in the seventh inning with an RBI single off former Seibu ace Hideaki Wakui to plate pinch-runner Shinya Hasegawa. Chunichi tied it against Lions closer Taishi Masuda (2-1) in the ninth, but Hasegawa’s second career homer, off Daisuke Sobue (2-3) won it in the home half.
Carp 1, Fighters 0: At Kitahiroshima Taxpayers’ Burden Field, Allen Kuri (5-2) struck out seven over seven scoreless innings, while allowing two hits, and was not really any better than lefty Takayuki Kato (4-4), who gave up a solo homer to Shogo Sakakura in eight innings of work. Takuya Yasaki got his seventh save for the Carp.
Tigers 11, Eagles 3: At Miyagi Stadium, Teruaki Sato hit a three-run third-inning triple off Masahiro Tanaka, and tripled and scored off him in a two-run fifth. The Eagles narrowed the gap in the third on back-to-back homers by Yuma Yasuda and Ryosuke Tatsumi, and Johan Mieses chipped in his fourth homer in the seventh to make it 6-2. The Tigers rubbed salt in the Eagles’ wound with a five-run ninth.
Giants 10, Buffaloes 0: At Osaka Dome, Adam Walker tried to achieve baseball’s most meaningless trivia stat, but fell short in the ninth when his ball into the outfield failed to find the gap, forcing him to settle for a homer, a triple, three singles, three runs and three RBIs.
Shosei Togo (7-1) scattered six hits and four walks over seven innings in what was mostly a close game.
Orix outfielder Keita Nakagawa gifted Yomiuri a run when he lost a pop up off the bat of Adam Walker, who was credited with an RBI single, and made it 2-0 against the Buffaloes’ top draft signing last year, Ryuhei Sotani (0-1) in his major league debut. Walker hit his fifth home run in the sixth, singled in a run in the Giants’ five-run eighth, when Takumi Oshiro hit his eighth homer with two on.
Marines 6, Swallows 0: At Chiba Marine Stadium, C.C. Mercedes () ran roughshod over Yakult for seven innings, and Japan lefty Keiji Takahashi (), who on Sunday talked about the issues he’s had after the WBC, allowed three runs over 4-2/3 innings. Koki Yamaguchi singled to open the second and scored on Tatsuhiro Tamura‘s sac fly. Raito Ikeda singled in two in the fifth and Yamaguchi hit a three-run homer, his fourth, in the seventh.
The Marines were winless in their previous five games (0-4-1), while Yakult’s four-game win streak — after a 13-game winless run – ended.
Hawks 4, Deniers 0: At Fukuoka Dome, Nao Higashihama (4-5) struck out seven over seven innings, and former Yokohama High School standout Kensuke Kondo went 3-for-3 against the visitors from Yokohama, doubling in SoftBank’s first run and scoring its second. Takuya Kai also homered for the Hawks. Livan Moinelo took the mound in the ninth with one out and two on and ended the threat for his third save.