Baseball: Laird homers lift Marines in classic pitcher's duel

Sports

Brandon Laird stole the spotlight in a marque pitching matchup with two home runs, including a ninth-inning walk-off shot, as the Pacific League-leading Lotte Marines beat the third-place Rakuten Eagles 3-2 on Friday. For eight innings, the game at Zozo Marine Stadium east of Tokyo belonged to former Yankee Masahiro Tanaka and hard-throwing Lotte rookie Roki Sasaki. With two outs in the bottom of the ninth, Laird teed off on an 0-1 pitch from reliever Tomohito Sakai (3-2) to break the 2-2 tie. "He left a forkball up in the zone and I didn't miss it," said Laird. Tanaka allowed two runs on four...

Kyodo News

Kyodo News