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Baseball: Masahiro Tanaka hurls 4-hitter as Eagles win 11 straight

Masahiro Tanaka of the Rakuten Eagles pitches against the Lotte Marines in a Pacific League game at Rakuten Seimei Park in Sendai, on May 10, 2022. (Kyodo)

SENDAI (Kyodo) -- Masahiro Tanaka threw a four-hitter as the Pacific League-leading Rakuten Eagles beat the Lotte Marines 7-0 to extend their club-record winning streak to 11 games on Tuesday.

    The former New York Yankee Tanaka (4-1) needed just 107 pitches to earn the win at Rakuten Seimei Park Miyagi. The right-hander went the distance for the first time this season, striking out seven and walking one.

    Tanaka allowed one single through the first four innings. He gave up two in a row to begin the fifth but retired the next three batters to get out of the jam and his team scored two in the home half to back him up.

    With the bases loaded and two outs, pinch-hitting Ginji Akaminai plated the opening run with an infield single and Rakuten scored another on a passed ball.

    Tanaka gave up a single and walk to open the seventh but again came away unscathed, this time ending the inning with a double play, before the Eagles scored five in the eighth to all but seal the result.

    Jose Marmolejos doubled in two runs to chase Lotte starter Kasuya Ojima (0-4) before Ryosuke Tatsumi singled in a run and Ginjiro Sumitani two more to complete the scoring.

    "I was only focusing on my next batter, next pitch," Tanaka said. "I had jams, but I tried not to get caught up by the situation...the fans gave me that one last push."

    The Orix Buffaloes beat the Nippon Ham Fighters 4-2 in the day's other PL game.

    The Chunichi Dragons beat the Central League-leading Yakult Swallows 1-0 after Ariel Martinez hit a fourth-inning solo shot. The DeNA BayStars beat the Yomiuri Giants 3-1 and the Hiroshima Carp won 3-0 against the Hanshin Tigers.

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