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Around the NPB Horn: Kazuo Yamaguchi announces his retirement

by on Dec.18, 2009 @ 10:29 am, under NPB

Hanshin Tigers

...Senichi Hoshino will stay on as the Tigers' Senior Director next season.

...Ryo Asai and Keiichi Hirano were guests on a Mainichi Broadcasting radio show on Thursday and to speak about the past and upcoming season.

...Chief position player coach Yoshiaki Oka said that he has no intention of using Matt Murton if he doesn't have a capable glove in the outfield.  The Tigers are hoping Murton can help fill the void left by Norihiro Akahoshi's retirement.

They'll be keeping a close eye on Murton over the first half of their exhibition game schedule to see how he plays the outfield.

Nippon Ham Fighters

...Masataka Nashida will look to Yoshio Itoi to pick up the slack left by Terrmel Sledge's departure.  As such, he's a strong candidate to take over the number 5 slot in the line-up next year.

Seibu Lions

...Yasuyuki Kataoka will have his second sit-down with the FO on the 24th.  And he doesn't plan on signing at the second sit down.  He apparently isn't happy that the Lions aren't placing any importance on the fact that he was on the WBC roster and that he can steal bases.

Orix Buffaloes

...The Buffaloes will have early camp for pitchers and position players near the end of January next year.  The players are trying to set the start date at 1/25 in Okinawa.  The club also announced that it will reimburse players for lodgings and transportation.

Yakult Swallows

...Yasuhiro Ichiba held his waterfall training at Seiryu-ji Temple in Saitama Prefecture.  He stayed under the waterfall for about 15 minutes and said that he had a hard time breathing because the water was so cold.  The temperature outside was about 5 degrees C (41 degrees F) while the water was about 3 degrees C (37 degrees F).

...Norichika Aoki will be making an appearance on QVC Japan on the 19th starting at midnight.  And it looks like he'll be providing PR help for the Magniflex mattress.


...Kazuo Yamaguchi announced on his blog that he will be retiring.  Yamaguchi wanted to continue pitching, but there just weren't any teams interested in his services.