...Turning a corner? Tomoaki Kanemoto is 6-for-12 so far in the month of July.
...Norihiro Akahoshi was held out of the starting line-up again on Saturday due to chronic neck pains. He's currently day-to-day.
...Of Heaven and Hell: Craig Brazell had a great game on Friday, going 3-for-4 with a double, homer, a run scored, and 3 RBI. But on Sunday, he went 0-for-4 and struck out 3 times, once with the bases loaded.
So what's the media coverage like today? They bring up his 139 strike outs from last season and cite that as a reason why the Lions dropped him after just one year.
Sports analyst Masahiro Doi had this to say about Brazell in a Sanspo article:
"There are some players that can make hits out of balls out of the zone, like Ichiro, and there are some players that chase balls out of the zone and fall into slumps. Brazell falls into the second group of hitters. He needs to lay off balls out of the zone. [Randy] Bass could do that. He really needs to get used to letting pitches out of the zone go by. If he can do that, he can hit .300."
Speaking of Bass, he's going to be in Tokyo for Dream Match 2009. I'll try to post something about that a little later.
...Takuro Ishii home run in yesterday's game against the Yokohama Bay Stars was not only his first home run of the season, but also the 100th of his career. The first home run he hit was back on July 26th, 1992.
...Toshiya Sugiuchi is currently riding a personal 7-game winning streak and picked up his 9th win.
...Yuichi Honda was not in the starting line-up on Saturday due to tightness in his back. He's listed as day-to-day.
...Yoshinori Sato hit 156 km/h on the radar gun in yesterday's game against the Hanshin Tigers.
...It was going to happen sooner or later: Tetsuya Yamaguchi leads all NPB pitchers with 41 appearances. And for the better part of the season, he's been very efficient in getting people out, as evidenced by his 6 wins and 17 holds. And prior to his appearance on Saturday, he was carrying a 0.84 ERA over 43 innings of work. He also held opponents to just 28 hits while walking only 5. But in his 41st appearance (and 5th straight appearance in as many games), Yamaguchi gave up 2 runs (both earned) on 2 hits and 2 walk and couldn't record a single out. Seems like he's getting a little tired to me.