Yuki Nishi struck out 12 and held the Hiroshima Carp to a run over eight innings as the Hanshin Tigers eased to a 9-1 win Thursday in the Central League.
Hanshin amassed 16 hits with all its starting players getting at least a hit as Nishi (9-4) kept the Carp off the board until the eighth in a 112-pitch effort at Mazda Stadium.
"I went up to the mound determined to pitch many innings. (Catcher Ryutaro) Umeno called good pitches," said the right-hander as he went within a victory of double-digit wins for the third straight season.
Fumiya Hojo hit a two-run home run off Yusuke Nomura (6-3) in the first inning and Yoshio Itoi had an RBI single in the fifth before the Tigers erupted for six runs in the sixth.
Jerry Sands and Justin Bour hit back-to-back solo shots to open the frame before Nishi singled in another run with runners on the corners with no outs for a 6-0 lead to chase opposite number Nomura after 103 pitches.
Hiroshima reliever Ryuji Ichioka failed to stem the flow, loading the bases with one out and ceding Itoi and cleanup man Yusuke Oyama RBI singles each before Hanshin scored its final run on a bases-loaded groundout.
Nomura surrendered eight runs on 11 hits and a hit batsman over five-plus innings as his team's five-game unbeaten run was snapped. Nishi could not quite go the distance after allowing a run in the eighth with a walk and two singles with one out but did more than enough for his second straight win.
At Tokyo Dome, Yomiuri scored all its nine runs by the fourth inning and Angel Sanchez (7-3) limited DeNA to two runs over seven innings as the Giants ran away 9-7 against the BayStars.
In the Pacific League, Hotaka Yamakawa tied the game with a three-run shot in the seventh as the Seibu Lions played out a 4-4 tie with the SoftBank Hawks at MetLife Dome.
At Sapporo Dome, Takayuki Kishi (3-0) limited the Nippon Ham Fighters to a run on four hits over seven innings in the Rakuten Eagles' 4-1 win.