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Giants, Greisinger dominate Swallows

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Giants, Greisinger dominate Swallows

by Rob Smaal (Apr 22, 2009)

Giants right-hander Seth Greisinger continued his domination of his former club, striking out 11 in a complete-game three-hitter as Yomiuri topped the Yakult Swallows 4-0 in Nagasaki on Tuesday.

Hayato Sakamoto was 3-for-4 for the Giants with a pair of doubles, but Greisinger was the man on this night.

Greisinger (3-1), who won a Central League-best 16 games for the Swallows in 2007, has now beat Yakult the last seven times he has faced them, but rarely in such a dominant manor. Greisinger faced just four hitters over the minimum Tuesday, walking one batter.

"It feels great to give our bullpen a rest," said Greisinger, who also led the league in wins with 17 last season, his first with the Giants. "I didn't pitch a complete game last year so it feels good to have one this year. It was just a good game all around."

As usual, Greisinger was economical with his pitches, throwing just 122 over the nine innings.

"Eleven strikeouts is a lot for me," added Greisinger. "Fortunately, I was able to get a lot of first-pitch and second-pitch outs to keep my pitch count down."

Greisinger was perfect thru 3 2/3 innings before Norichika Aoki smacked a single back up the middle, but the righty whiffed Swallows cleanup hitter Jamie D'Antona to leave Aoki stranded at first.

The Swallows' second hit didn't come until the eighth inning, a squib-chopper off the bat of veteran Shinya Miyamoto that third baseman Michihiro Ogasawara misplayed when he tried barehanding the ball. Catcher Ryoji Aikawa got Yakult's only other hit of the night--all singles--later in the eighth, but Greisinger whiffed the other three hitters he faced that inning. Swallows second baseman Hiroyasu Tanaka struck out all three times he faced Greisinger, who also struck out D'Antona and slugger Aaron Guiel twice each.

The Giants jumped on veteran right-hander Masao Kida early, roughing up the 40-year-old former major-leaguer for three runs on four hits--including two doubles--in the first frame.

Alex Ramirez singled to left to plate the Giants' first run before Yoshiyuki Kamei and Lee Seung Yeop followed up with consecutive run-scoring doubles to deep right off Kida.

That was more than enough run support for Greisinger on this night, but the Giants put another run on the board in the second inning when Takahiro Suzuki slapped an RBI single through a drawn-in infield to make it 4-0.

Yomiuri almost tacked on a fifth run in the fifth inning, but Kamei was thrown out by Kazuki Fukuchi in a close play at the plate after Shinnosuke Abe had singled to left field.

Kida, who also took the loss last week against Greisinger and the Giants, allowed four runs on nine hits through five innings as his record fell to 1-2.

The three-game set is a Giants' home series being played in Kyushu. The teams hook up tonight in Saga before moving to the Fukuoka Dome on Thursday.

Elsewhere in the CL, the Chunichi Dragons edged the Hanshin Tigers 2-1 at Nagoya Dome. The Carp-BayStars game at Yokohama Stadium was rained out.

In the Pacific League, the defending Japan Series champion Seibu Lions crushed the Orix Buffaloes 7-1 at Kyocera Dome. The Eagles-Marines matchup at Kleenex Stadium was also a rainout.

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