Morneau powers MLB stars to first win in Japan

Tokyo, Japan ( – Justin Morneau clubbed a three-run homer
and added an RBI double, as the Major League Baseball All-Stars picked up
their first win of the 2014 Japan Series with a 6-1 triumph over Samurai Japan
on Sunday.

Evan Longoria also homered for the MLB All-Stars, who banged out 10 hits a day
after being no-hit by four Japanese hurlers. Jose Altuve and Yasiel Puig, the
top two batters in the lineup, each finished 3-for-4 in the victory.

Chris Capuano worked five strong innings to earn the win for the MLB stars,
who had lost each of the first three in the five-game series that concludes on
Tuesday in Sapporo. The lefty surrendered just a run on four hits with four
strikeouts and no walks.

Puig made sure there would be no talk of a second no-hitter with a one-out
double in the first inning. He then scored on Morneau’s two-bagger down the
right field line for the MLB stars’ first lead of the series.

The Japanese stars tied it in the second on consecutive doubles by Nobuhiro
Matsuda and Yoshitomo Tsutsugo, but Morneau’s blast in the third put the MLB
All-Stars ahead for good.

Altuve started the go-ahead rally with a one-out single and Puig chased him to
third with his second double of the game. Morneau then drilled a Shintaro
Fujinami full-count offering over the right field wall for a 4-1 lead.

Longoria led off the sixth with a homer and the MLB stars tacked on another
run in the eighth when Eduardo Nunez knocked in a run with a bases-loaded

The Japanese stars threatened in the seventh and eighth innings. Ryosuke
Kikuchi lined out to center to leave two runners aboard in the seventh against
Jerry Blevins, and Tommy Hunter worked around a pair of singles in the eighth
with a called third strike on Matsuda.

Mark Melancon struck out two in a perfect ninth to close out the victory.