Baseball: Oyama and Nakano push the Tigers past the Giants


Yusuke Oyama and Takumu Nakano are pictured in a post-game interview after helping the Hanshin Tigers beat the Yomiuri Giants, who lead the Central League, at Koshien Stadium on September 3, 2021. (Pool photo) (Kyodo)

NISHINOMIYA, Japan (Kyodo) – Yusuke Oyama and rookie Takumu Nakano made a dramatic comeback and gave second-placed Hanshin Tigers a 7-3 win over the Yomiuri Giants, who lead the Central League, on Friday.

The Tigers, who now leave the Giants behind with a win rate of 0.578 to 0.576, were 3-0 behind in the fifth game against right-handed Shosei Togo (8-6), who withdrew the first 15 Hanshin hitters he faced .

Oyama interrupted Togo’s unsuccessful run at Koshien Stadium with a one-out single and faced Yoshio Itoi’s pinch-hit double.

“I fell behind on the count, but the bat on the ball and I’m glad that resulted in a run,” said Oyama.

Oyama made up 3: 3 with a two-time base-charged double that drove Togo off the hill. With two outs and loaded bases, Nakano hit the decisive blow by controlling a 3-2 slider from Reliever Ryusei Oe, which rolled around the right corner of the field and cleared the bases.

“The whole at-bat I was waiting for a slider, but I got fastballs and just fell behind in the count. But my desire to get a hit was really strong and I’m happy I did it,” Nakano called.

Oyama added an RBI single on the eighth RBI single to complete the score.

Togo allowed five runs over 6-1 / 3 innings in which he dropped six, walked one, and gave up six hits. Tiger’s starter Yuki Nishi allowed three runs over six innings.

At the Tokyo Dome, Albert Suarez (4-3) completed 5-1 / 3 goalless innings and Yasutaka Shiomi scored a lead-off home run in the first inning when the third-placed Yakult Swallows beat the Hiroshima carp 3-1 to get 1 . 1/2 games of the Giants.

In the Vantelin Dome Nagoya Kosuke Fukudome drove in the single run and Yudai Ono (5-8) and two relievers combined a six-hit shutout when the Chunichi Dragons defeated DeNA BayStars 1-0.

At PayPay Dome, Yoshinobu Yamamoto (12-5) allowed a run in the eighth inning, but took the win after Adam Jones beat Orix Buffaloes, the leader of the Pacific League, 2-1 in the ninth inning of the RBI single fourth-placed SoftBank led Falken.

Yuki Matsui was missing from Rakuten Seimei Park Miyagi, Rakuten Eagles reliever Sung Chia-hao (1-3) allowed four ninth inning runs when the third-placed Rakuten Eagles 8-4 fell to the Seibu Lions. Lions outfielder Takumi Kuriyama hit one, just short of Japan’s legendary 2,000-hit milestone.

At Zozo Marine Stadium, Yudai Fujioka’s tied RBI single in the eighth inning helped knock runner-up Lotte Marines 7-5 ahead of last-placed Nippon Ham Fighters.

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