NISHINOMIYA, Hyogo Pref. – Tomoaki Kanemoto broke loose hitting home runs in three consecutive at-bats and had seven RBIs Wednesday as the Hanshin Tigers romped over the Hiroshima Carp 8-2.
Kanemoto, who celebrated his 41st birthday on April 3, had a three-run homer to right-center in the first inning, went deep with a two-run drive to center in the third and hit a solo blast to right in the fifth before capping an electric night with a run-scoring single two innings later at a refurbished Koshien Stadium.
“This day only comes once in a blue moon. I was aiming for a fourth but it was a single on a fly ball to right,” said Kanemoto, who homered three times in a game for the first time in his career.
Kenta Kurihara had an infield RBI single and Yoshiyuki Ishihara homered for Hiroshima in the third and fourth, respectively.
Left-hander Tsuyoshi Shimoyanagi (1-0) allowed two runs in six innings for the win. Yuki Saito (0-1) took the loss.
Giants 12, BayStars 1
At Yokohama Stadium, Michihiro Ogasawara hit two of Yomiuri’s four homers as the Giants erupted in a 13-hit onslaught and handed the BayStars their season-opening fifth defeat in a row.
Ogasawara had a two-run shot in the opening frame and added a solo shot in a four-run fifth. Satoshi Fukuda (1-0) pitched one-run ball over seven innings, striking out six with two walks.
Veteran lefty Kimiyasu Kudo (0-1), who extended his own personal record for the longest active career in Japanese baseball to 28 seasons, yielded all four homers and surrendered eight runs.
Swallows 8, Dragons 4
Hawks 7, Eagles 0
At Sendai’s Kleenex Stadium, Hiroki Kokubo and Nobuhiko Matsunaka drove in five runs between them as Fukuoka Softbank ended Tohoku Rakuten’s season-opening winning streak at four games.
Kokubo knocked in three runs with a pair of doubles — in the first and ninth innings. Matsunaka had a two-run single in the second among his three hits.
Buffaloes 10, Lions 2
At Saitama’s Seibu Dome, Tuffy Rhodes homered and finished with four RBIs to back a complete-game effort by Shogo Yamamoto as Orix routed Seibu.
Fighters 8, Marines 7