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Around the NPB Horn: Norichika Aoki could begin training as early as the 17th

by on Nov.15, 2009 @ 2:46 pm, under NPB

Chiba Lotte Marines

...The Marines' latest addition, Tae-Gyun Kim, is already causing a stir down in Okinawa.  Travel companies are putting out calls for tour guides that can speak Korean.

...Hiroyuki Kobayashi probably won't exercise his FA option.

Said Kobayashi, "I probably won't exercise my FA option.  I'd like to stay with Lotte one more year.  And I think my options will be better next year."

Chunichi Dragons

...Kazuyoshi Tatsunami has aspirations of becoming a manager.

Hanshin Tigers

...Keisuke Mizuta's new uniform number next season will be 32 (from 15).

...Kodai Sakurai took 166 swings of the bat on Saturday and his 52 out of the yard.

...Yusuke Takahashi and Yuya Nohara fielded 200 balls (between each of them) in the outfield during an intensive fielding practice session on Saturday.

The two players drew the number 200 out of a hat that included 100, 150, and 250.

Nippon Ham Fighters

...It seems there's a chance that Yu Darvish might start 2010 at Ni-gun Spring camp.  The Fighters don't want to rush Darvish and feel that a Ni-gun Spring camp start could help take the pressure off his shoulders.

In his place, the Fighters may invite their 1st round draft pick Masaru Nakamura to Spring camp instead.

...Chung-Shou Yang (陽仲壽) will be changing his name to Dai-Kang Yang (陽岱鋼).  I'm not entirely sure on the romanized spelling.

Orix Buffaloes

...Akinobu Okada predicts that Takahiro Okada will have a breakthrough 2010 season.

"He's really starting to get his timing down.  I think anyone that sees him batting right now will place high expectations on him," said Okada.

Rakuten Eagles

...Marty Brown showed up wearing the Eagles' uniform for the first time in his career on his third day at Spring camp.

Seibu Lions

...The Lions will hold a press conference for Kimiyasu Kudo on the 16th.  While the money figure has yet to be released, the deal was for 1-year.

Current guesses place Kudo's uniform number at either 50 or 74.

Softbank Hawks

...Nobuhiro Matsuda muddied his uniform with about 2 hours of intensive fielding practice on Saturday.

Yakult Swallows

...Norichika Aoki rehab is going well.  He's planning on doing a lot more running in 2010 and feels that his batting will improve as well.

"The operation has given me better range of movement in my ankles, and that should allow me to push off better and lift my legs higher.  All of that should help my running and batting game," said Aoki.

If his rehab continues to go well, he could join the Ni-gun training group out in Saitama as early as the 17th.

Yomiuri Giants

...Hisanori Takahashi continues to negotiate with the Giants based on the understanding that he wants to stay with the team.  But it appears as though he still has aspirations on going to the Majors.

...Seth Greisinger wants to return to the Giants next season.  If not, he says he might set his sights to the Majors.

Greisinger did manage to win 13 games this past season but faded at the end of the season with inflammation in his right elbow.