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Around the NPB Horn: Yu Darvish starts up his training for 2010

by on Jan.06, 2010 @ 3:43 pm, under NPB

Chiba Lotte Marines

...Preferential treatment?  Tae-Gyun Kim arrived in Japan with earrings on both ears.  The club has already instituted rules banning dyed hair, facial hair, and earrings.  Seems foreign players won't be required to follow these rules.

Based on some of the headlines and articles that have been coming out about Kim's arrival, it would seem the media is building him up as something of a rebel -- almost every article I've read mentions his pierced ears and a few mentions his sunglasses and the fact that he wasn't wearing a tie.  Oh boy.

Chunichi Dragons

...Dionys Cesar's goal for the 2010 season is to hit .300 and steal 40 bases.  He won the MVP in the Mexican League last season and would like to win one in the NPB this season as well.

Hanshin Tigers

...Veteran Mitsunobu Takahashi was one of the first players to arrive at Koshien Stadium for practice on Tuesday.  The Stadium had been closed for the New Year holiday.

...Takahiro Arai spent about 40 minutes in the batting cages on Tuesday.

...Club president Nobuo Minami wants members in his front office to stop relying on e-mail so much.  He wants people to be more hands.

...The Tigers still need to offer contracts to 5 more players (Kanemoto, Fujikawa, Toritani, Shimoyanagi, and Kubo).  They plan to begin the process sometime early next week.  Because of the late timing, there's a good chance some, or all five, will start Spring camp without contracts.

Hiroshima Carp

...Shigenobu Shima took off for Ishigakijima on Tuesday for training.  He has already lost about 7kg during the off-season and would like to start Spring camp under 100kg if possible (he's currently around 100kg).

...Kenta Maeda's goal is to hit and surpass 150km/h on the radar gun; he managed to hit 149 last season.

Maeda held his first practice of the year on Tuesday and worked out for about 3 hours.

Nippon Ham Fighters

...Yu Darvish held his first practice of the year on Tuesday.  He'll be working out with Romash Tasuku Dass and Seibu Lion players Ryoma Nogami and Yasuhiro Tanaka.

...For the first time since he joined the Fighters, Kazuhito Tadano will be heading to the US for training.  He leaves today.

...Masataka Nashida feel's he will be able to determine whether or not Sho Nakata is ready for Ichi-gun on the first day of Spring camp.  The Fighters have left Nakata to train on his own this off-season to see how he handles the responsibility of preparing his body for the new season.

..Makoto Kaneko held his first practice of the year on Wednesday at Kamagaya.  He worked out for about 2 hours.

Orix Buffaloes

...Akinobu Okada is checking the newspapers daily to learn as much about the other teams as possible.

Rakuten Eagles

...Marty Brown has been working on remembering player faces and names over the last month using DVDs the club sent him.

Seibu Lions

...Takeya Nakamura held a 20-minute soft toss session on Tuesday.  It was the first time he swung a bat in 2010.

...Kimiyasu Kudo started up his training by arriving at Seibu 2 Stadium before 8am.  He ran, did some sprints, and then thew about 183 pitches into a net.

Yakult Swallows

...Norichika Aoki celebrated his 28th birthday on Tuesday.  He plans on starting his training on Wednesday at Konohana Dome in Miyazaki.

Yokohama Bay Stars

...Seiichi Uchikawa has a new bat.  The new bat is thicker between the bat head and grip areas and the overall center of the bat has been moved closer to the grip.

Uchikawa also started his training with Hiroshima Carp Takuro Ishii again (their 6th year).  On Tuesday, they worked out for 8 hours.  The two will continue to train with each other for 2 weeks.

Yomiuri Giants

...Yoshinobu Takahashi was one of the first players to arrive at Giants Stadium in Kawasaki on Tuesday.  He arrived at 7:35am, did some running, and worked on his swing.  He told reporters that he was at about 50-60%.

...The trio of Tetsuya Utsumi, Tetsuya Yamaguchi, and Shun Tono are aiming for a combined 45 wins (or about 15 wins each) in 2010.

...Daisuke Ochi, along with Nippon Ham Fighter Ken Miyamoto, left for Hawaii on Tuesday for training.


...Makoto Imaoka held his first practice of the year on Tuesday.  Imaoka has been invited by the Marines to tryout for the club during Spring camp.

...A Samurai Japan roster of pro players might be taking part in the 2010 Asian Games in November.  The amateur organizations feel they won't be able to put a together team because the Asian Games happen to take place at around the same time as the Meiji Jingu and Independent League Tournaments.