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Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Fighters' Nakata bashes two HRs in victory over BayStars


YOKOHAMA — Hokkaido Nippon Ham's Sho Nakata hit a pair of homers in a long ball derby with Yokohama slugger Alex Ramirez, and the Fighters routed the BayStars in a 7-3 win in their final interleague game on Monday.

News photo
No doubt about it: Fighters slugger Sho Nakata belts a third-inning home run against the BayStars on Monday at Yokohama Stadium. Hokkaido Nippon Ham defeated Yokohama 7-3. KYODO

Kazuhito Tadano (4-0) allowed three runs and six hits in six innings for the win. Kota Suda (0-1) took the loss.

Kaneko Makoto opened the scoring with a sacrifice fly with none out in the third after the Fighters loaded the bases on three consecutive hits, and Nakata went deep two outs later with runners on second and third for his first blast of the night at Yokohama Stadium.

Nakata added a leadoff shot off reliever Shigeki Ushida in the sixth and singled home a run in a two-run ninth to cap a five-RBI night. Atsunori Inaba tacked on the seventh run with an RBI double.

Ramirez had a solo drive in the fourth and a two-run shot in the sixth.

The Venezuelan slugger hit homers in consecutive at-bats for the first time since June 15, 2011, in a game against the Chiba Lotte Marines and improved to a career 46 homers in interleague for second on the all-time list while holding the top rank with 179 RBIs.

Nippon Ham finished with the second-best interleague record of 14-8 with two ties. Central-League doormat Yokohama, which plays the Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles in its final game of interleague on Tuesday, fell a season-worst 16 games below .500.

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