Softbank Hawks players give outgoing manager Koji Akiyama the traditional toss in the air after winning the Japan Series on Oct. 30 over the Hanshin Tigers. (Shinnosuke Ito)
NPB/ Softbank Hawks hold off Tigers to win Japan Series for 2nd time in 4 years
FUKUOKA--The Softbank Hawks presented retiring manager Koji Akiyama with the perfect going-away gift, winning the Japan Series on Oct. 30 with a 1-0 thriller over the Hanshin Tigers.
Tatsuki Machida competes in the men's free skate at the Skate America figure skating event on Oct. 25 in Hoffman Estates, Ill. (AP Photo)
FIGURE SKATING/ Japan's Machida wins Skate America men's event
HOFFMAN ESTATES, Ill.--Japan's Tatsuki Machida was a runaway winner in the Skate America men's competition here on Oct. 25 with a score of 269.09,
Brazil's Neymar celebrates after scoring his fourth goal against Japan in Singapore Oct. 14, 2014. (Nobuhiro Shirai/ The Asahi Shimbun)
SOCCER/ Neymar scores all 4 as Brazil beats Japan 4-0
SINGAPORE--Say "Neymar," and say no more.
Daisuke Takahashi (Asahi Shimbun file photo)
FIGURE SKATING/ Takahashi announces retirement
Daisuke Takahashi, the first Japanese man to win an Olympic figure skating medal, said on Oct. 14 he is retiring from the sport after 20 years on the ice.
Kei Nishikori kisses the trophy after defeating Milos Raonic in their final match at the Japan Open tennis championships in Tokyo Oct. 5. (Naoko Kawamura/ The Asahi Shimbun)
TENNIS/ Nishikori beats Raonic to claim Japan Open title
U.S. Open runner-up Kei Nishikori beat the No. 4-seeded Milos Raonic of Canada 7-6 (5), 4-6, 6-4 in the final of the Japan Open on Oct. 5 to win his fourth ATP Tour title of the season.
Yokozuna Hakuho, top, throws down grand champion Kakuryu on Day 15 of the Autumn Grand Sumo Tournament at Ryogoku Kokugikan in Tokyo on Sept. 28. (Reina Kitamura)
SUMO/ Hakuho wins autumn tourney to move into tie for 2nd on all-time list on Day 15
Yokozuna Hakuho of Mongolia won the Autumn Grand Sumo Tournament on Sept. 28 to capture his 31st Emperor's Cup while furthering his status as one of the greatest wrestlers in the history of the sport.
Yokozuna Hakuho throws down maegashira No. 10 Ichinojo on Day 14 of the Autumn Grand Sumo Tournament at Ryogoku Kokugikan in Tokyo on Sept. 27. (Naoko Kawamura)
SUMO/ Hakuho moves closer to 31st title by defeating Ichinojo on Day 14
Grand champion Hakuho moved a step closer to winning his 31st Emperor's Cup on Sept. 27 when he defeated upstart Ichinojo to regain sole possession of the lead at the Autumn Grand Sumo Tournament.
Maegashira No. 10 Ichinojo, right, defeats yokozuna Kakuryu on Day 13 of the Autumn Grand Sumo Tournament at Ryogoku Kokugikan in Tokyo on Sept. 26. (Makiko Ikenaga)
SUMO/ Ichinojo shocks yokozuna Kakuryu to move into tie for lead with Hakuho on Day 13
Makuuchi division debutante Ichinojo posted a stunning upset over grand champion Kakuryu on Sept. 26 to move into a tie for the lead with yokozuna Hakuho, who was handed his first loss at the Autumn Grand Sumo Tournament.
Maegashira No. 10 Ichinojo throws down ozeki Goeido on Day 12 of the Autumn Grand Sumo Tournament at Ryogoku Kokugikan in Tokyo on Sept. 25. (Reina Kitamura)
SUMO/ Hakuho maintains one-win lead over Ichinojo on Day 12
Yokozuna Hakuho overpowered ozeki Kisenosato on Sept. 25 to maintain a one-win lead over upstart Ichinojo at the Autumn Grand Sumo Tournament.
Maegashira No. 10 Ichinojo forces down ozeki Kisenosato on Day 11 of the Autumn Grand Sumo Tournament at Ryogoku Kokugikan in Tokyo on Sept. 24. (Sayaka Yamaguchi)
SUMO/ Unheralded Ichinojo stays one win behind Hakuho on Day 11
Makuuchi division debutante Ichinojo beat ozeki Kisenosato on Sept. 24 to stay one win behind compatriot and yokozuna Hakuho at the Autumn Grand Sumo Tournament.
Yokozuna Hakuho, left, forces down maegashira No. 4 Osunaarashi on Day 10 of the Autumn Grand Sumo Tournament at Ryogoku Kokugikan in Tokyo on Sept. 23. (Kengo Hiyoshi)
SUMO/ Hakuho withstands Osunaarashi challenge to maintain lead on Day 10
Yokozuna Hakuho survived a rare scare against Egypt's Osunaarashi on Sept. 23 to maintain a one-win lead over yokozuna Kakuryu and upstart Ichinojo at the Autumn Grand Sumo Tournament.
Yokozuna Hakuho, left, at the face-off with maegashira No. 4 Takarafuji on Day 9 of the Autumn Grand Sumo Tournament at Ryogoku Kokugikan in Tokyo on Sept. 22 (Jun Ueda)
SUMO/ Hakuho takes sole possession of lead as Kakuryu goes out on Day 9
Yokozuna Hakuho of Mongolia moved into sole possession of the lead on Sept. 22 when he beat Takarafuji, and compatriot Kakuryu was upset by Yoshikaze at the Autumn Grand Sumo Tournament.
New York Yankees starting pitcher Masahiro Tanaka throws during the second inning of the baseball game against the Toronto Blue Jays at Yankee Stadium Sept. 21 in New York. (AP Photo)
BASEBALL/ Tanaka, returning from elbow injury, leads Yankees over Blue Jays 5-2
NEW YORK--Masahiro Tanaka started Jose Reyes with a 92 mph fastball, his first major league pitch since July 8. He threw 70 pitches in all and didn't feel any pain in the right elbow that had sidelined him for 2 1/2 months.
Japan's Kosuke Hagino celebrates on the podium after receiving his gold medal following his win in the men's 200-meter freestyle swimming final at the 17th Asian Games in Incheon, South Korea Sept. 21.(AP Photo)
SWIMMING/ Hagino wins Asian Games freestyle final
INCHEON, South Korea--Japan's Kosuke Hagino stole the thunder from one of swimming's biggest rivalries Sept. 21, winning the 200-meter freestyle final ahead of China's Olympic champion Sun Yang and South Korean star Park Tae-hwan.
Maegashira No. 10 Ichinojo throws down maegashira No. 15 Okinoumi on Day 8 of the Autumn Grand Sumo Tournament at Ryogoku Kokugikan in Tokyo on Sept. 21. (Shiro Nishihata)
SUMO/ Hakuho shows no sign of letting up on Day 8
Yokozuna Hakuho remained on track for a 31st Emperor’s Cup when he steamrolled komusubi Jokoryu on Sept. 21 to stay in a tie for the lead with Mongolian compatriot Kakuryu at the Autumn Grand Sumo Tournament.
Maegashira No. 5 Ikioi defeats maegashira No. 10 Ichinojo on Day 7 of the Autumn Grand Sumo Tournament at Ryogoku Kokugikan in Tokyo on Sept. 20. (Naoko Kawamura)
SUMO/ Hakuho, Kakuryu tie for lead, 3 wrestlers one win back on Day 7
Yokozuna Hakuho deftly dispatched Toyonoshima to move into a two-way tie for the lead with compatriot Kakuryu at the Autumn Grand Sumo Tournament on Sept. 20.
Fireworks explode from the roof of the stadium during the opening ceremony for the 17th Asian Games in Incheon, South Korea Sept. 19. (Takuya Isayama/ The Asahi Shimbun)
Games-Diversity, sporting power on show at Asiad opening
INCHEON, South Korea--The 17th Asian Games opened in a multi-colored blaze of fireworks and carefully crafted K-Pop routines on Sept. 19, as athletes from the world's most populous region came together in pursuit of gold and glory in South Korea.
Yokozuna Hakuho forces out  maegashira No. 3 Yoshikaze on Day 6 of the Autumn Grand Sumo Tournament at Ryogoku Kokugikan in Tokyo on Sept. 19. (Satoru Sekiguchi)
SUMO/ Hakuho dispatches Yoshikaze to stay tied for lead on Day 6
Grand champion Hakuho overpowered Yoshikaze on Sept. 19 to stay in a three-way tie for the lead with fellow Mongolians Kakuryu and Ichinojo at the Autumn Grand Sumo Tournament in Tokyo.
Ozeki Goeido balances on the ridge to defeat komusubi Chiyotairyu on Day 5 of the Autumn Grand Sumo Tournament at Ryogoku Kokugikan in Tokyo on Sept. 18. (Satoru Sekiguchi)
SUMO/ Harumafuji pulls out, Hakuho shares lead on Day 5
Grand champion Hakuho easily defeated Aoiyama to share the lead while fellow yokozuna Harumafuji pulled out and Goeido secured his second real win as ozeki at the Autumn Grand Sumo Tournament on Sept. 18.
Masahiro Tanaka pitches in a simulated game at the Yankees' spring training complex in St. Petersburg, Florida, on Sept. 15. (Yuki Yamaguchi)
MLB/ Yankees to hand ball to Tanaka after 75 days recovering from torn UCL
ST. PETERSBURG, Florida--New York Yankees right-hander Masahiro Tanaka will take the mound on Sept. 21 against the Toronto Blue Jays, the MLB rookie’s first start since injuring his right elbow in July.

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