The MLB stars embarked on their tour of Japan with an exhibition game Thursday against the NPB's iconic Yomiuri Giants franchise, and it certainly didn't take the Major League hitters long to shake off any rust they might have had since the end of the season.
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Four MLB stars had multihit games, including Marlins catcher J.T. Realmuto, who clubbed a solo home run in the fifth inning of a 9-6 win. The Major Leaguers used a five-run third inning, highlighted by Nationals outfielder Juan Soto's RBI double off the Tokyo Dome roof, to take a commanding six-run lead, then never looked back.
The game's most exciting play came an inning later, when Seiya Matsubara's sinking fly ball split the gap between the Braves' Ronald Acuna Jr. in left and Soto in center. By the time Acuna retrieved the ball and got it back into the infield, Matsubara had raced around the bases for a three-run inside-the-park home run that brought the Tokyo Dome crowd to its feet and cut the MLB stars' lead to 7-4.
Japan All-Star Series schedule (watch games live on MLB Network)
• Thursday: MLB All-Stars 9, Yomiuri Giants 6
• Friday: 6:05 p.m. local/4:05 a.m. ET
• Saturday: 6:30 p.m. local/4:30 a.m. ET
• Sunday: 7 p.m. local/ 5 a.m. ET
• Tuesday: 6:30 p.m. local/4:30 a.m. ET
• Nov. 14: 7 p.m. local/5 a.m. ET
• Nov. 15: 6 p.m. local/4 a.m. ET