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Baseball: Yamaoka, Tongu help Buffaloes earn 1st win of season

Taisuke Yamaoka works eight innings to help the Orix Buffaloes beat the Rakuten Eagles for their first win of the season. (Kyodo)

OSAKA (Kyodo) -- Taisuke Yamaoka worked eight innings and rookie Yuma Tongu broke up a scoreless game with a fourth-inning RBI singles as the Orix Buffaloes held on to beat the Rakuten Eagles 2-0 on Friday for their first win of the season.

Yamaoka (1-0) survived three hits and four walks to keep the Eagles scoreless before turning the game over to closer Hirotoshi Masui in the ninth at Kyocera Dome Osaka.

"Those walks are something I need to correct. I was able to pitch carefully (with runners in scoring position)," Yamaoka said.

Eagles starter Tomohiro Anraku survived a first-inning jam, and didn't allow another runner until rookie Hayato Nishiura opened the fourth with a single. An error and a hit batsman loaded the bases for Tongu, the Buffaloes' second pick in last autumn's draft.

"I've not been contributing to any runs for several games, and I wanted to do something to make Yamaoka's job easier," Tongu said. "It hasn't been a great start for me. I haven't been contributing a lot on defense, but at least I could do something with my bat."

Anraku (0-1) allowed two runs, one earned on three hits and two walks over seven innings.

The Eagles' loss was their first since Opening Day the previous Friday.

Elsewhere in the Pacific League, Naoyuki Uwasawa (1-0) allowed a run in seven innings to lead Nippon Ham to a 5-2 win over the Seibu Lions. The SoftBank Hawks suffered their second loss after Katsuya Kakunaka homered off rookie Masato Okumura in the 10th inning of the Lotte Marines' 7-3 win.

In the Central League, Tomoyuki Sugano (1-1) allowed six-hits over the distance and Alex Guerrero broke a 2-2 tie with a home run as the Yomiuri Giants ran off their sixth straight win, beating the DeNA BayStars 3-2.

Masahiro Nakatani's seventh-inning, two-run, pinch-hit home run brought the Hanshin Tigers from behind in a 3-2 win over the Hiroshima Carp. Naomichi Nishiura scored twice and drove in three runs, including two in the eighth as the Yakult Swallows came from behind to beat the Chunichi Dragons 8-7.

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