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MLB: Yoshitomo Tsutsugo belts first home run of season in win for Pirates

Yoshitomo Tsutsugo hits his first home run of the season for the Pittsburgh Pirates in their doubleheader nightcap against the Cincinnati Reds at Cincinnati's Great American Ball Park on May 7, 2022. (Kyodo)

CINCINNATI, Ohio (Kyodo) -- Yoshitomo Tsutsugo hit his first home run of the year, a two-run shot, to help power the Pittsburgh Pirates to an 8-5 win over the Cincinnati Reds on Saturday.

    The high fly to left center came in the Pirates' four-run first inning of their doubleheader nightcap, after a 9-2 loss in the opener of their National League Central clash at Cincinnati's Great American Ball Park.

    Bryan Reynolds put the Pirates on the board with a solo homer and Ke'Bryan Hayes doubled to chase right-hander Dauri Moreta (0-1).

    With two outs, Tsutsugo whiffed at a fastball before blasting a high 1-2 heater from reliever Phillip Diehl, sending it 118 meters (387 feet) into the stands.

    "I've been plugging away, doing the things I can without panicking, so I had a feeling that the home runs were going to start coming," Tsutsugo said.

    Tsutsugo, who led Japan's Central League in home runs in 2016 for the DeNA BayStars, went 1-for-4 with a walk. He drew a walk in his only plate appearance as a pinch hitter in the opener.

    At Wrigley Field, Seiya Suzuki went 1-for-3 with a walk in the Chicago Cubs' 7-0 loss to the Los Angeles Dodgers, then went 1-for-4 in the doubleheader nightcap, a 6-2 loss. Afterward, he expressed some frustration with his poor form.

    "In the final accounting, I got hits, but they didn't feel good, and the at-bats weren't that good," Suzuki said. "I have to do a few different things. Ideally, I would just be getting good swings and adjusting from there."

    At Angel Stadium in Anaheim, California, Shohei Ohtani went 1-for-4 in the Los Angeles Angels' 7-3 loss to the Washington Nationals.

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