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Under his wing …

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Under his wing …

Sharp Muranaka helps Swallows slow Giants

Kyohei Muranaka hasn’t been in form this season, but his teammates were certainly ready to stick a feather his cap after a stellar performance that beat the Yomiuri Giants on Sunday at Tokyo Dome.

The lefty (6-5) hadn’t won a game since July 15, but he held the Central League front-runners to one run over 6.1 innings of a 6-1 victory that helped the Swallows avoid a sweep.

The oft-injured Muranaka was making his 17th start this season, and had drawn the ire from skipper Junji Ogawa after getting bombed for 11 earned runs in a July 25 loss to the Hiroshima Carp. But he held the Giants to four hits, while walking two and fanning three, to lower his ERA to 4.61.

He also drew a bases-loaded walk from second-year righty Ryosuke Miyaguni (3-2) for his first RBI since Aug. 24, 2010.

Shingo Kawabata had his third career four-hit game and two RBIs to back Muranaka, and Tsuyoshi Ueda added a pair of hits and an RBI.

TIGERS 8, CARP 2

Ryota Arai had three hits, including his seventh homer, and two RBIs, and older brother Takahiro Arai also went deep [the second time they’ve hit homers in the same game this season], and added three RBIs as host Hanshin broke its eight-game skid by thumping Hiroshima.

Randy Messenger (6-9) took advantage of the first game of more than two runs for the Tigers since Aug. 4.

BAYSTARS 10, DRAGONS 6

Randy Ruiz and Alex Ramirez hit solo shots and Norihiro Nakamura’s seventh-inning sac fly helped host Yokohama overcome a 6-3 deficit and beat Chunichi.

Sho Aranami had four hits to help offset 17 hits by the Dragons.

PACIFIC LEAGUE

BUFFALOES 5, MARINES 1

Takahiro “T.O.” Okada had two RBI singles, and [JBW guest this week] Bobby Scales homered and singled to help power Orix past Lotte at The Q.

Recent addition Alessandro Maestri was the beneficiary of a season-high 16-hit attack, working 6.1 innings of one-run ball to win in his Japan debut. He allowed four hits, a walk and a hit batter with five Ks.

LIONS 7, FIGHTERS 4

Jose Ortiz homered twice and added a single for three RBIs, and Shogo Akiyama had two hits and an RBI to lead Seibu past Nippon Ham at Seibu Dome.

Rookie righty Ken Togame (2-0) picked up the win with 1.2 perfect innings in relief of Kazuhisa Ishii, who struggled to protect an early lead.

EAGLES 3, HAWKS 3

Masahiro Tanaka allowed 12 hits over eight innings, but Akihisa Makida and Ryo Hijirisawa knocked in runs off the previously untouchable Masahiko Morifuku in a ninth-inning rally as Rakuten scrambled to earn a tie against SoftBank at FYJ Dome.

Wily Mo Pena had three hits and two RBIs, and rookie starter Shota Takeda held the Eagles to a run over five-plus innings but saw his potential win erased.

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