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Wada, Chen pace Dragons over BayStars

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Wada, Chen pace Dragons over BayStars

by Rob Smaal (May 4, 2009)

Kazuhiro Wada pounded a two-run homer and Chen Wei-yin tossed a complete-game five-hit shutout Sunday as the Chunichi Dragons defeated the BayStars 2-0 at Yokohama Stadium.

Chen (2-1), a Taiwanese left-hander in his fifth season in Japan, had a perfect game going through six innings. He gave up a leadoff single to Takehiro Ishikawa in the seventh and worked out of a few jams down the stretch as the BayStars left seven baserunners stranded over the final three frames.

"I wasn't really concerned too much about preserving the shutout," said Chen, who struck out five and walked a pair. "I thought that if they scored one run it would be no big deal."

The game was a matchup of two clubs struggling early in the season. The fifth-place Dragons, who had lost their previous four contests, improved to 11-14 with the win while the cellar-dwelling BayStars fell to 9-15.

Chen and BayStars starter Ryan Glynn were locked in a bit of a pitchers' duel over the first few frames, but Chunichi newcomer Tony Blanco led off the top of the fourth inning with a double down the right-field line. Wada, the next batter, then took Glynn for a ride over the wall in right, a two-run shot and his ninth home run of the season.

"We were on a losing streak so we were all suffering a bit," Wada said. "We all have to work together to get through it, and that's what we did today."

Glynn (1-4) took the loss, giving up two runs on seven hits through seven innings. The American right-hander whiffed two and issued one walk.

In the bottom of the eighth, Yokohama had runners at the corners with none out. But Chen got Takeshi Hosoyamada and pinch-hitter Tatsuhiko Kinjo to pop out to the infield and, after walking Ishikawa to load the bases, the lefty got Noriharu Yamazaki to ground out to short.

In the bottom of the ninth, slugger Shuichi Murata and Dan Johnson ripped back-to-back singles off Chen to once again put runners at the corners with one out, but Chen got Yuuki Yoshimura to ground into a double play to end it.

"We had our chances in the seventh, eighth and ninth innings but we just couldn't get it done," said Yokohama skipper Akihiko Oya. "Chen was on today and his fastball really had some pop on it."

Veteran left-hander Kimiyasu Kudo pitched the ninth inning for the BayStars. Kudo, who will turn 46 on Tuesday, gave up two hits and struck out one of the five batters he faced in a scoreless outing.

In Saturday's series opener, Yokohama's Daisuke Miura threw four-hit ball over eight innings and Seiichi Uchikawa homered as the BayStars topped the Dragons 6-1. The teams wrap up their three-game set this afternoon at Yokohama Stadium.

In other Central League action Sunday, Norichika Aoki belted a tiebreaking solo home run in the eighth inning at Hiroshima's Mazda Zoom-Zoom Stadium to give the Yakult Swallows a 3-2 win over the Carp.

At Koshien Stadium, the Yomiuri Giants defeated the Hanshin Tigers 4-0.

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