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NPB: LaRocca, Cabrera, Rhodes, Fernandez go yard in the 6th; Koshien winds; and more

by on Mar.17, 2009 @ 1:51 pm, under NPB


...Kai-Wen Cheng pitched in his first practice game with the Tigers vs the Chunichi Dragons. Using a 145km/h fastball mixed in with some breaking pitches, he tossed 1 inning and retired the side in order.

...Seems like the new renovations at Koshien Stadium have created some new winds that are wreaking havoc on some balls hit into the air.

Said Norihiro Akahoshi, "The wind appears to be swirling. So I can't really tell from which direction the wind is blowing. I had a hard time tracking down fly balls out there."

...The Tigers held an evening practice session in the evening on Tuesday in order to see what the newly renovated stadium is like at night with the lights on. Based on comments made by the manager and owner, it seems like the new lights are bright and really light up the ballpark.

The lights at night...


...Tomohiro Nioka recorded his first hit in his third exhibition game at bat vs. the Orix Buffaloes since joining the Ichi-gun team. He entered the game in the 6th inning as a pinch hitter and hit the third pitch from Jon Leicester for a single.

...Ryo Sakakibara was struck by a batted ball hit by Greg LaRocca while pitching against the Orix Buffaloes and had to be assisted off the field. He had only thrown 3 pitches when he had to be lifted from the game.


...Greg LaRocca (solo), Alex Cabrera (2-run), Tuffy Rhodes (solo), and Jose Fernandez (solo) all hit home runs for the Buffaloes vs. Nippon Ham Fighters. All four of those home runs also came in the same inning (6th inning).

Greg LaRocca, Alex Cabrera, Tuffy Rhodes, and Jose Fernandez


...Satoshi Nagai had a promising start against the Yokohama Bay Stars on Tuesday. While he did give up 3 runs on 6 hits and a walk over 6 innings of work, he did also strike out 10 batters. Nagai was also apparently getting more movement on his breaking pitches.


...The Yahoo! Dome outfield walls were repainted light green this off-season. However, due to difficulties in seeing the ball from home plate, the upper portion of the walls (about 7.5cm worth) will be repainted orange.


...Les Walrond might be giving Bay Star fans something to look forward to (especially after a somewhat awful start against the Lotte Marines in which he gave up 4 runs over 4 innings of work). In his start against the Eagles, he tossed 5 scoreless innings and gave up 3 hits and 3 walks while striking out 3. Walrond faced 20 batters and threw 83 pitches.


...Kentaro Nishimura had an awful outing against the Yakult Swallows, giving up 6 runs on 8 hits and 3 walks over 4.2 innings of work. He also struck out 4.


...Eri Yoshida was set to pitch during some situational batting practice on Tuesday, but was scratched at the last minute, as a precautionary measure, due to some discomfort in her right shoulder.