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Around the NPB Horn: Sakamoto gets 46M yen raise, Matsunaka to DH full-time?

by on Nov.26, 2009 @ 6:40 pm, under NPB

Hanshin Tigers

...Kodai Sakurai will likely be batting 8th next season.  The Tigers are hoping that Sakurai can take a page out of Kenji Johjima's approach to hitting and become more aggressive at the plate.

Nippon Ham Fighters

...The Fighters re-signed Takayuki Kanamori to a contract worth 13M yen (up 3.8M yen).

They also re-signed the following three players:

Yoshio Itoi - 60M yen (up 42M yen)
Masaru Takeda - 90M yen (up 14M yen)
Tomohiro Nioka - 80M yen (down 30M yen)

Rakuten Eagles

...The Eagles re-signed Taishi Nakagawa to a contract worth 6M yen (no change).

Softbank Hawks

...Tsuyoshi Wada is planning on going to Hawaii in January so that he can train in warmer weather.

This will be the first time Wada goes overseas in order to train.

...Sho Iwasaki will be working on bulking up over the off-season.  He's hoping to start Spring camp at about 80kg (he's listed on the registry at 74kg).

...Nobuhiko Matsunaka will likely be a full-time DH next season.  Or at least until Inter-league play.  A lot will depend on how well his knees are holding up.

Matsunaka had his knees cleaned out on 10/23 and is currently in the middle of rehab.

Yomiuri Giants

...The Giants re-signed Hayato Sakamoto to a contract worth 80M yen (up 46M yen).  That pus him in line with Ichiro Suzuki and Hideki Matsui.

...The Giants also re-signed Shota Kimura to a contract worth 12M yen (up from 5.28M yen).

...Tetsuya Utsumi got in some early morning training today.  Utsumi will be working on strengthening his lower body this off-season.


...Former Hanshin Tiger Randy Bass donated 1M yen towards next year's 1,300th Anniversary of Nara Heijo-kyo Capital Festival.