In a span of eight days, Yuya Yanagi has earned the starring role in the new baseball movie, “The pitcher that runs forgot” after he took part in another pitchers’ duel after throwing nine hitless innings the week before, while the Orix Buffaloes and Nippon Ham Fighters wrapped up their low-scoring series in Osaka with a 1-0 game, and Kazuma Okamoto keeps doing his home run thing.
Swallows 1, Dragons 0: At JIngu Stadium, Cy Sneed (6-6) threw a four-hit shutout without issuing a walk to outduel Yuya Yanagi (3-9) who took the complete game loss. Yanagi struck out eight while allowing five hits and no walks over eight innings. The game’s only run came when Domingo Santana led off the second with his 13th home run. The win completed a three-game sweep for the Swallows and marked the Dragons’ 18th shutout loss. On the bright side, Yohei Oshima moved to within three hits of 2,000 in his career.
Buffaloes 1, Fighters 0, 11 innings: At Osaka UFO Dome, Orix avoided the second tie of their three-game series, when Kenya Wakatsuki drew a leadoff walk in the 11th against Bryan Rodriguez (1-4). A sacrifice, a Tomoya Noguchi single and an intentional walk loaded the base and the game’s only run on a Keita Nakagawa infield single.
Fighters lefty Kenta Uehara completed nine innings for the first time in his career, but Nippon Ham has now suffered 10 walk-off losses, the most in either league.
Carp 7, Giants 5: At New Hiroshima Citizens Stadium, Matt Davidson hit a two-run homer for Hiroshima in a three-run first off Yohander Mendez and singled ahead of Shota Dobayashi’s three-run fifth inning homer. Kazuma Okamoto hit his 34th homer with two on in the fourth to make it a one-run game and doubled and scored in the Giants’ two-run sixth.
The Carp turned three double plays, including a slick one to bail out former closer Shota Nakazaki in the eighth. Ryoji Kuribayashi, who had been Hiroshima’s closer from the start of 2020 when he was CL rookie of the year until this spring after he hurt his lower back ahead of the World Baseball Classic, posted a solid ninth to record his second straight save, and his 10th of the season.
Tigers 2, Deniers 0: At Yokohama Stadium, Masashi Ito (8-4) threw a six-hit shutout. Sheldon Neuse singled and scored in the second after doubles by Teruaki Sato and Seiya Kinami, and Sato singled and scored on Ito’s two-out RBI single in the fourth.
DeNA’s offense, which has largely been propelled by two players this season, Toshiro Miyazaki and Shugo Maki, will deactivate Miyazaki Monday after he was diagnosed with inflammation of his left intercostal muscles – within his rib cage.
Lions 6, Hawks 4,: At Fukuoka Dome, Seibu exploited a poor outing from one of the seven pitchers SoftBank rolled out in a bullpen day. The Lions, who were no-hit Friday by Shuta Ishikawa, scored five runs in the sixth on eight straight hits. With the game tied 1-1, Ryusei Sato led off with a single, was bunted over and scored the first run on the Lions’ third hit of the inning before he wrapped up the onslaught with his second hit in the inning.
Kenta Imamiya, Yuki Yanagita and Ryoya Kurihara each homered for the Hawks. Seibu’s Wataru Matsumoto (4-7) allowed two runs over six innings for the win. The game was not ostensibly supposed to be a bullpen day, but the Hawks pulled the plug on Rei Takahashi in the second after he allowed five of the first 10 batters he faced to reach base, and said he would be sent to the farm on Monday to “work things out.”
Marines 3, Eagles 2: At Miyagi Stadium, Takashi Ogino had four hits for the first time this season. He doubled and scored the first run off Takahiro Norimoto in the first, singled in the third, lined out in the fifth, singled in pinch-runner Koshiro Wada to tie it 3-3 in the seventh, and broke the tie in the ninth by singling home Wada off closer Yuki Matsui (1-3). Naoya Masuda worked the ninth for his 31st save.