...Rookies Yuki Shimooki and Kenta Imamiya played well during a Ni-gun practice game against the Computer Kyoiku Gakuin Regulation Baseball Club today. Shimooki started the game and tossed 5 shutout innings while giving up 3 hits; it was his longest outing of the season. Imamiya hit a game-tying solo homer.
...If Munenori Kawasaki is really seriously about playing in the Majors, he'll likely stay with the Hawks and sign a one year deal (he's set to earn his international FA option next season. Otherwise, the clock gets "reset" on his FA options -- if he decides to exercise his domestic option and move on to another team, he'll need to wait at least 4 years in order to become a free agent again (both domestic and international), unless he can get the team that just signed him to post him.
As for the Hawks, it seems they're prepared to go the extra mile in order to keep Kawasaki. Sadaharu Oh has also offered to help out if needed.
...Bum-Ho Lee was demoted to Ni-gun today. Lee has shown some flashes of potential, but hasn't been able to secure a spot in the line-up. He's currently 19-for-87 (.218) and owns a .614 OPS.
...Roberto Petagine could be added to the active roster as early as tomorrow. On Thursday, Petagine started at first and batted third in a Ni-gun game against Hiroshima. He went 0-for-2: GIDP, ground out to second, walk.
...Hitoshi Tamura has hit safely in 10 straight games.
...The Hawks added four new t-shirts to their store today. Each t-shirt is designed by a player and carries a milestone: Tamura and 150 home runs; Nobuhiko Matsunaka and 1,500 games; Tsuyoshi Wada and 1,000 strikeouts; and Jose Ortiz and 100 NPB home runs.
...The Hawks announced they signed a sponsorship deal with parent company, Softbank. Effective immediately, Hawks' uniforms will carry a patch on the upper right pant leg (near the pelvis).