Baseball: Katoh makes 1st MLB start, scores run in Blue Jays win

© Kyodo News

Utility infielder Gosuke Katoh started his first major-league game Thursday, drawing a walk and scoring a run in the Toronto Blue Jays' 3-2 win over the Boston Red Sox.

Batting eighth and playing second base, the 27-year-old Katoh, born in California to Japanese parents, began a big-league game for the first time since he was drafted by the New York Yankees in the second round in 2013.

"I was only thinking of doing my job. I'm really satisfied as the run turned out to be an important one," said Katoh, who had made two pinch-runner appearances this year.

"Baseball is baseball. The only difference is having 10 times the number of spectators compared to the minors. The actual game on the field is the same."

Before 35,792 at Fenway Park, Katoh, who spent his childhood in Kanagawa Prefecture near Tokyo, drew a walk off Tanner Houck (1-1) to open the third inning. After advancing to second with two outs, Bo Bichette singled to right to plate him.

Katoh was solid in his defensive duties too as he delivered a backhand toss to help get a double play in the fourth with one out, using a glove -- adorned with his Japanese name and the Japanese flag -- that he has worn throughout his eight years in the minors.

"I don't like looking back at the past. I'm only thinking about (the next game against) the Astros," he said.

Hirokazu Sawamura allowed three hits but no runs over 1-1/3 inning of relief and did not face Katoh.

Yoshitomo Tsutsugo had his first extra-base hit of the season for the Pittsburgh Pirates, his two-run double in the fifth completing the scoring as they came from behind to beat the Chicago Cubs 4-3.

Batting cleanup, Ethan Roberts (0-1) went ahead in the count but Tsutsugo fouled off the right-hander who only threw cutters and lined his sixth pitch to left field.

"That trip to the plate was all about driving in the runners so I think it went well," said Tsutsugo, who went 1-for-5 and is batting .195. "The game would have gone much easier had I drove in runners in my other trips to the plate. I want to adjust those ones."

Seiya Suzuki went 0-for-4 and had an RBI for the Cubs as his batting average dropped to .343.