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Around the NPB Horn: Tae-Kyun Kim eyeing the Majors

by on Nov.16, 2009 @ 5:17 pm, under NPB

Chiba Lotte Marines

...The Marines held a press conference to introduce their latest addition, Tae-Kyun Kim.

Said Kim, "I'll have a chance to polish my skills in Japan where there are a lot of good pitchers.  I'm going to try and put up some solid numbers while I'm here so that I can make the next leap into the Majors."

He also added, "I've been a clean-up hitter up to now because I can hit home runs [but that's no all I can do].  I also also get base hits.  I want to keep doing that [here in Japan] while I nail down the clean-up spot.  While I want to do well in Japan, I really want to go to the Majors."

Chunichi Dragons

...Yoshihiro Suzuki said that he will no longer be training with Kenji Johjima.  Suzuki had been joining Jojhima's training sessions at Sasebo since 2006.  Now that Johjima has returned to the NPB and signed on with a team in the same division, Suzuki no longer feels it would be right for him to train with Johjima.

Nippon Ham Fighters

...The Fighters are trying to teach Sho Nakata the three keys for becoming a good leader: attentiveness, results, and self-awareness.  The team is hoping that having Nakata think about what it takes to be a good leader will in turn help him make the full-time move to Ichi-gun.

Nakata is currently working on strengthening his lower body during the off-season.

...Masataka Nashida is thinking about moving Masanori Hayashi into the rotation next season.  The team will likely begin trying him out as a starter during Spring camp.

With Shugo Fujii leaving via free agency, Brian Sweeney being let go, and Yu Darvish coming off an injury, the team is hoping to find a little more depth for the rotation.

Rakuten Eagles

...Marty Brown wants Shoji Ohiro to become the next Takahiro Arai.

Said Brown, "We're limited in the power department so I'd like to take some time and see what he can do.  But we won't put him to hard so he doesn't get injured."

In 2007, Ohiro hit 11 home runs in 124 at bat at Ni-gun (his year in terms of power numbers).  But Ohiro has also battled a number of injuries over the years, including lower back pain.

Seibu Lions

...The Lions held a press conference to officially announce their newest signing: Kimiyasu Kudo.  As mentioned yesterday, his uniform number with the team will be 55.  The club will be paying Kudo 30M yen plus incentives next season.

Softbank Hawks

...The Hawks announced that they are calling up Ikusei players Koji Uchida (P) and Hiroki Yamada (P) to join the Ichi-gun roster for the final week of training camp (11/17-21).

...Shingo Tatsumi tossed 227 pitches during a bullpen session on the 11th.  At some point after that, he starting feeling discomfort in his elbow.  The team has shut him down for the time being.