...Kazuhito Futagami will likely make an appearance in relief against the Seibu Lions on Saturday. On Friday, he threw 61 pitches in the bullpen.
...Tatsuya Kojima will likely throw about three innings against the Seibu Lions on Sunday; he threw 64 pitches with Akihiro Yano as his bullpen catcher.
...Masashi Nohara picked up his first "pro hit" on Thursday against the Nippon Ham Fighters. He recorded and RBI double off Tomoya Yagi in the 4th inning with a runner on second and 2 out. With Takahiro Arai set to rejoin the team for their next road trip, Nohara will be sent to Ni-gun.
...Pitching coach Takashi Yamaguchi told reporters on Thursday that if they can't settle on a set system for relievers, they'll likely just go with the hottest hand to bridge the gap between the starters and Kyuji Fujikawa. They do have a number of options: Randy Messenger and Tomoyuki Kubota from the right and Hirotaka Egusa and Kazuya Tsutsui from the left.
...Minoru Iwata threw 50 pitches in the bullpen at Naruohama on Thursday. His schedule moving forward: BP on the 6th, about 100 pitches in a bullpen session on the 7th.
...Egusa told reporters after his outing on Thursday that he threw a change-up in a game for the first time in his life.
...Kenji Johjima told reporters that he's regaining the feel for playing on artificial turf. Out of the 30 clubs in the MLB, only 3 play in stadiums with artificial turf. In Japan, that number is the opposite: of the 12 clubs in the NPB, only the Tigers and the Hiroshima Carp play on natural grass.
...Yasutomo Kubo threw first ball strikes to 12 of the 14 batters he faced on Thursday.