...Rakuten Eagles 2008 1st round draft pick Hiromichi Fujiwara will be taken to a hospital on the 25th to run some tests on his left shoulder. Why they are waiting until the then, I have no idea.
...With Kazuhiro Kiyohara retiring, Tuffy Rhodes becomes the oldest (and most experienced) player on the Buffaloes' roster.
"I need to step up and become a leader for this team. My rank has gone up. It's my turn," said Rhodes. Buffaloes manager Daijiro Ohishi added, "He does what he's asked and does what he's supposed to do. He's a great player to have on the team."
...WBC practice games on the 20th and 21st against the Giants will start from 1pm at Sun Marine Stadium.
...Daisuke Matsuzaka tossed 106 pitches in his latest bullpen session. For the first time during WBC training camp, Matsuzaka was able to throw until he was satisfied with his session. Throw in his long throw practice and Matsuzaka probably threw close to 200 pitches.
The article mentions a "70 pitch per day, no consecutive days" limit imposed by the Red Sox, but doesn't exactly explain how, or when, that was lifted. It almost sounds like Matsuzaka just made up his own mind to let loose. Might this cause a bit of a ruckus in Boston?
"Problems can't be addressed unless you practice a lot. I really wanted to throw more pitches," said Matsuzaka after his session.
Incidentally, this is the first time he has thrown so much this early in the season since joining the Red Sox.
...Nobuhiko Matsunaka and Kenta Kurihara are two naming currently being floated as possible players that won't make the final cut. Both players are nursing injuries and don't fit into Hara's conditioning concept.
...Ichiro Suzuki was giving hitting tips to Norichika Aoki during his BP sessions yesterday. When Aoki was asked why kinds of things Ichiro told him, he simply replied, "Industry secrets."
Ichiro giving Aoki some hitting tips
...Masahiro Tanaka has a good shot of making the final cut as a middle reliever. He tossed 59 pitches in a bullpen session with Kenji Johjima behind the plate.
...Sadaharu Oh will be throwing out the ceremonial first pitch for the game on the 5th (Japan vs China). Isao Harimoto will be throwing out the ceremonial first pitch for the game on the 6th (Taiwan vs Korea).
...The Asahi Beverage "2009 WBC Tokyo Round Special Exhibit" booth opened up at Maru Building on the 20th. Memorabilia from the 2006 WBC are on display at the booth. The exhibition is open daily, 10am-8pm, until March 2nd.
2009 WBC Tokyo Round Special Exhibit presented by Asahi Beverage
...Hiroyuki Nakjima is changing things up a little -- he re-dyed his hair to black during his off-day on the 19th.