Sponichi: The Red Sox appear to have all but signed Junichi Tazawa. Basing their report off an article posted at MLB.com, the highest bidders for Tazawa's services appear to have pulled out of the running.
Daily Sports: Daisuke Miura will be making his decision soon. Miura has said that he will be making an announcement of his decision on the 30th after meeting with Hashin officials and then Yokohama officials. The announcement will be made at the Yokohama Bay Stars offices.
The final offers:
- Hanshin - 3 years/11-oku yen plus bonuses
- Yokohama - 3 years/8-oku yen
While this is just speculation on my part, the fact that Miura is making his public announcement at the Yokohama offices can't be a good sign for the Tigers. I would think that if Miura were signing with the Tigers, he would have flipped the order and made his announcement at the Hanshin offices.
Sports Hochi: You can throw Michihiro Ogasawara and Kenta Kurihara onto the list of potential clean-up hitters for Samurai Japan. Out of the group of Ogasawara, Kurihara, Matsunaka, and Murata, I like Ogasawara the most. I'd probably go with Matsunaka next, followed by Kurihara and then Murata.
Nikkan Sports: The Orix Buffaloes have enlisted the help of Kazuhiro Kiyohara. The Buffaloes have hired Kiyohara on as a special batting instructor. Kiyohara is thinking about reaching out to Ichiro Suzuki to join him. Hideo Nomo may also make another visit as a special pitching instructor.