...Tigers' fans are not happy. Some taunts from the crowd during a game against the Buffaloes on the 22nd:
We need a new manager! We need more than just a few new names. You're all missing the mark. Do you guys know what you're doing?
Change the batting order already. Why aren't you considering whether or not players are doing well or which pitchers they'll be facing.
Forget about Imaoka! Let's see some youth. There's gotta be someone down at Ni-gun.
...A day after pitching in a game (a 214-day span since he last threw in a game), Tomoyuki Kubota felt no tightness or pain in his right shoulder. Kubota will appear in a game as a reliever on the 30th against Ni-gun Softbank. If everything continues to go well, he could start a game against Ni-gun Orix on June 5th.
...When Tomoaki Kanemoto drilled his 10th homer of the season on the 22nd against the Orix Buffaloes, he joined 15 other players that have 16 consecutive season of 10+ home runs. Kanemoto has now also hit a home run off 200 different pitchers, making him only the third player to reach that milestone (Tuffy Rhodes - 226; Kazuhiro Kiyohara - 223)
...Scott Seabol was taken off the active roster on the 23rd after getting hit by a pitch on the 20th against the Orix Buffaloes. He was hit in his left knee and an examination at a hospital on the 22nd revealed that he would require 2 weeks for a full recovery.
NIPPON HAM FIGHTERS
...Makoto Kaneko was hit in the left knee during his first at bat in the second and was lifted after his third at bat in the 6th. He did not go to the hospital and was seen icing down the area.
...The Nakata ShoW has begun. He played in his first game last night and batting in the 7 hole as the DH. He went 1-for-4: single to left, swinging strike out, swinging strike out, ground out to the pitcher.
...Tomohiro Nioka was not in the starting line-up on the 22nd (and wasn't in the starting line-up again on the 23rd) due to tightness in his left hamstring.
...Katsuya Nomura comments after the game on Friday:
On Nagai giving up 4 runs in the first inning against the Giants and how that might have hurt his chances at winning...
There is some of that, but I think I may have picked the wrong starting pitcher. If I really think about it, Nagai isn't the type of pitcher that can hold down the Giants strong offense. From the Giants' viewpoint, I think they might be thinking, "Don't be making fun of us."
On the option of Hasebe over Nagai...
If we were going to get hit, we may as well have gone with Hasebe. The Giants don't really worry about lefty vs. lefty match-ups, so I thought it wouldn't matter. If it's the same about of hitting, I thought Nagai would be the better choice. I would have had an easier time understanding the offensive outpouring if it was Hasebe pitching.
On worrying about Sakamoto...
Like I said, he's a good hitter. Not only is he a good hitter, but he also has a good glove. He has good range and he's light on his feet. Who would I have to give up to get him? I guess I'd have to part with someone like Iwakuma or Ma-kun...
Impressions of the Giants...
I could feel the difference in strength. You can't beat the thieving Giants. Do you know what thief means? It's an interesting word, you should look it up. It's upsetting that they use the power of money to win. Rakuten should have money too, I wonder where it sleeps. But everything will be alright since we're only going to lose 4 inter-league games.
...The Eagles have now also stopped selling rocket balloons at their home games, starting with the series against the Giants (2 days ago).
...Alex Graman will be returning to the United States on the 24th to have his shoulder examined.
...Nobuhiro Matsuda appeared in his first game (at Ni-gun) since fracturing a bone in his right hand. He went 0-for-1 with an RBI.
...FC Tokyo Forward Sota Hirayama will throw out the ceremonial first pitch on June 5th when the Swallows play host to the Rakuten Eagles.
YOKOHAMA BAY STARS
...Shuichi Murata took a ball off his face while fielding a ground ball in the 8th inning against the Seibu Lions last night and suffered a cut lip. He was taken out after the play just in case and should be able to play today.
...The 5 teams of the Kansai Independent League have decided that they will create a new company to handle league operations. Takeshi Kimura (club rep for the Kishu Rangers) will be in charge of the new company.