...Including his practice game appearances during Spring camp, Takahiro Matsuka has now gone four consecutive outings without giving up a run.
...Sponichi carried a mini-primer on Yu Darvish's pitches:
Fastball - tops out at 154km/h. Hit 100mph (161km/h) during the WBC last season.
Slider - two types: vertical and horizontal. Also has a slider that tops out at 130km/h. Perhaps his best "out" pitch.
Curve - around 100km/h. He can also throw it at about 120km/h for a swinging strike.
Cutter - 140+km/h. Comes down and in on left-handed batters.
Fork - 140+km/h. He also has a splitter.
Change - uses all five fingers and throws it in the 130km/h range.
Two-seamer - in the 140km/h range. Cuts in on right-handed batters. He can also throw a sinker and shuto that look similar.