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Baseball: Solid Miyagi earns 4th win as Orix hammers Nippon Ham

The Orix Buffaloes' Hiroya Miyagi pitches during a Pacific League game against the Nippon Ham Fighters on May 11, 2021 at Tokyo Dome. (Kyodo)

TOKYO (Kyodo) -- Hiroya Miyagi gave up a run on four hits over eight strong innings to earn his fourth win of the season as the Orix Buffaloes romped to a 9-1 win over the Nippon Ham Fighters in the Pacific League on Tuesday.

    Okinawa-born Miyagi (4-0), in his second season, displayed great control and kept Nippon Ham largely at bay, working five straight 1-2-3 innings from the third at Tokyo Dome.

    "I managed to provide myself with positive images when I faced the first batter of each inning," said the right-hander, who fanned nine in a 111-pitch outing. "I wasn't expecting this (sort of start to the season)."

    Yutaro Sugimoto got Orix on the board in the first inning with a two-run homer before Kenshi Sugiya's solo shot in the bottom of the frame gave the Fighters their only run of the game.

    Masataka Yoshida's one-out RBI double -- a flare to left field -- with runners on the corners in the third restored the Buffaloes' two-run lead before Sugimoto followed by plating his third run of the night with a sacrifice fly to make it 4-1.

    Takahiro Okada fired a two-run shot with no out in the fourth before former Orix ace Chihiro Kaneko (0-2) was chased with one out in the inning. The veteran right-hander endured a night to forget after yielding six runs, all earned, on eight hits and a hit batsman in a 62-pitch effort, striking out two.

    Orix was not done as they added three runs in the sixth as Kotaro Kurebayashi doubled off reliever Takahiro Nishimura before Yoshida drew a bases-loaded walk off second reliever Masaki Taniguchi, whose subsequent wild pitch completed the scoring.

    At Rakuten Seimei Park Miyagi, cleanup Hiroaki Shimauchi drove in all the runs for the PL-leading Rakuten Eagles as they played out a 3-3 tie with the Seibu Lions.

    At Fukuoka's PayPay Dome, Brandon Laird slugged two solo shots as the Lotte Marines beat the SoftBank Hawks 4-1.

    At Koshien Stadium, the Central-League leading Hanshin Tigers came from behind to snatch a 4-4 tie with the Chunichi Dragons thanks to Kento Itohara's RBI single in the seventh.

    At Yokohama Stadium, a solo shot each from Akihiro Wakabayashi and Naoki Yoshikawa broke a 2-2 tie in the ninth as the Yomiuri Giants won 4-2 against the DeNA BayStars.

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