Miyamoto strokes hit 2,000 to enter Golden Players Club
The body type of a businessman, the steadiness of a sturdy wall and the determination of a honey badger helped guide Shinya Miyamoto straight to the door of the Golden Players Club.
He stepped inside on Friday, knocking a single back through the box for his 2,000 career hit in an 8-4 romp over the Hiroshima Carp at Jingu Stadium. And the Golden Players Club will benefit just as much from his membership as he will enjoy joining the distinguished 39 others with at least as many hits. Pitchers with 200 wins or 250 saves are also inducted into the club.
He's the oldest, at 41 years and 5 months, to reach the milestone, getting the hit off second-year righty Yuya Fukui (1-2).
Miyamoto, whose first hit came at Jingu on April 13, 1995, joined Yakult the same year as former teammate Atsunori Inaba, now of the Nippon Ham Fighters. Inaba last weekend recorded his 2,000th hit in exactly the same number if games played -- 1,976. Miyamoto also has 391 sacrifice hits.
Meanwhile, Wladimir Bakentien slugged a pair of solo shots, for a Japan-best 11, and Yuhei Nakamura had three hits and an RBI to key a 14-hit attack.
GIANTS 4, TIGERS 0
Toshiya Sugiuchi K’d eight for his first shutout with Yomiuri, and Shuichi Murata homered and added an RBI single as the Giants blanked Hanshin at Koshien Stadium.
Hisayoshi Chono also had a solo shot to back Sugiuchi, who recorded his 18th career shutout.
DRAGONS 3, BAYSTARS 3
Alex Ramirez and Norihiro Nakamura blasted Chunichi closer Hitoki Iwase for back-to-back solo shots in the ninth as host Yokohama powered its way to a time-limit tie.
It was the first time in Iwase's career that he has allowed back-to-back homers.
MARINES 3, LIONS 2
Yoshihisa Naruse (2-2) held Seibu to two runs on six hits and two walks over the distance, and Toshiaki Imae knocked in the game-winner with an eighth-inning triple as Lotte won at Seibu Dome.
Imae also singled and scored the tying run in the seventh as the Marines came from behind to win.
FIGHTERS 9, BUFFALOES 2
Atsunori Inaba socked his 250th career homer to back Yuki Saito (4-1), who worked seven strong innings as Nippon Ham battered Orix for 15 hits in a laugher at Sapporo Dome.
Sho Nakata smacked a three-run shot in a five-run third, Shinya Tsuruoka added two hits and three RBIs as the Fighters cruised.
EAGLES 5, HAWKS 0
Kelvin Jimenez (2-3) shut down SoftBank on six hits and no walks with seven Ks, and Akihisa Makita and three others knocked runs as Rakuten blanked host SoftBank for its third win in four games.
Jose Fernandez and Luis Garcia each knocked in a run, and Yosuke Takasu’s bases-loaded walk plated a run for the Eagles.