Chiba Lotte Marines
...Tsuyoshi Nishioka wasn't in the starting line-up on Friday night because he wasn't feeling well. He instead went to the hospital to get himself checked for the swine flu virus.
...The Tigers announced earlier on Friday that a Ni-gun ball player (name withheld) was diagnosed with the flu. At this point, it doesn't appear to be of the swine flu variant.
Nippon Ham Fighters
...The Fighters announced on Friday that they would allow their players to come into contact with fans again. The team was banned from public activities with the fans after a number of their players caught the swine flu virus.
...The Buffaloes trounced the Chiba Lotte Marines, 13-4, on Friday night. What's more, every player in the starting line-up had a hit and a run scored by the 3rd inning.
... Hitoshi Tamura was not in the starting line-up on Friday night after he hurt his left wrist in Thursday night's game (he was hit by a pitch) against the Orix Buffaloes. His status for Saturday is still not yet known.
...Takuya Kimura was catcher for an inning last night -- it was the first time he caught since July 6, 1999.
Why did he have to catch? Both Shinnosuke Abe and Kazunari Tsuruoka were already used and ineligible. The only other full-time catcher they had was Ken Kato, but he had to be removed after getting hit in the head by a pitch in the 11th inning. That left Kimura as the best option the Giants had.
...The Yomiuri Giants - Yakult Swallows game went into extra inning on Friday night and ended in a tie. The 5h 27m it took to complete the game established a new season high for the Central League. The previous high was 5h 9m in a game between the Yomiuri Giants and Hanshin Tigers on July 10th.