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Some Draft News and Notes: Tigers to pick Kikuchi if he submits his letter of intent

by on Sep.25, 2009 @ 2:42 pm, under College, High School, NPB

The Hanshin Tigers have said that if Yusei Kikuchi submits a letter of intent, at this point in time, they will pick him.  Even if he says he wants to go to the US.

"Even if he says he's going to the US, if he submits a letter of intent, we will pick him.  Once we have the right to negotiate with him, we'll use that time to try and convince him to stay in Japan," said a Tigers rep.

The Tigers also made it known that they are interested in Saito Yuki for next year's draft.


The Chunichi Dragons have announced that will likely go with Kenta Matsushita for their number 1 pick during the upcoming draft.  Matsushita is a righty pitcher out of Waseda University that tops out at 148km/h and has a number of off-speed pitches in his arsenal.  He's flying around the radar a bit because Waseda pitchers like Yuki Saito and Tatsuya Ohishi have stolen most of the spotlight.


The Yokohama Bay Stars will likely use this year's draft to go after pitching.  They currently have Masanori Fujihara (Ritsumei University, 181cm, 77kg, lefty) and Shuichi Furukawa (Nippon Bunri University, 175cm, 80kg, lefty) on their list of possible pitchers to draft.


Incidentally, the National Athletic Tournament is set to begin shortly (27th).  "Kikuchi Mania" is still alive and strong.  Niigata City Hall reported that they have been fielding calls about whether or not Kikuchi will be pitching during the Tournament.  Niigata government workers are expecting a full-house during the Tournament and have decided to up security at the games; they also plan to increase 24-hour security around the area as more people will likely crowd in Niigata.