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Hanshin Tigers News and Notes: December 2, 2010

by on Dec.02, 2010 @ 1:41 pm, under NPB

Takahiro Arai's schedule this month is apparently packed with a bunch of events he needs to attend.  He told reporters that he still hasn't been able to do any serious training and that he doesn't know when he'll be able to head to Hiroshima for his usual workouts.  Arai also added that he had to be careful about injuring himself and didn't want to rush things.

Arai also mentioned that he was going to start swinging the bat this month and that he was hoping to reach 160kg with his squats.

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Tomoyuki Kubota told reporters that he doesn't plan on throwing a lot during spring camp, at least not as much as he did during spring camp last year.

Said Kubota, "I will probably throw everyday.  I just won't be trying to hit a certain number of pitches, like a 150."

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Tomoaki Kanemoto ramped up his training at Naruohama on Wednesday.  With a kaatsu training belt wrapped around his right arm, Kanemoto ran dashes and also spent some time working out outdoors.

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Akinobu Mayumi is hoping veteran catcher Akihito Fujii will be able to help out some of the pitchers that may have run into brick walls with their development.

Fujii also told reporters that he plans on being the starting catcher on opening day (3/25), in addition to the starting catcher for the team's first practice game during spring camp (2/13, although it seems another game might be scheduled before that).

Incidentally, Mayumi also told reporters on Wednesday that the team can't rule out with 100% certainty that Kenji Jojima won't be ready for the start of the season.  And if that's true, then Fujii will be competing with Jojima for the starting catcher's job.

According to team officials, Jojima provided the club with his latest progress report on 11/30.

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Kyuji Fujikawa will be heading to Hawaii later this month for training.  He also doesn't plan on doing any throwing for the rest of this year (he notes the hiccups he experienced toward the end of the season as a reason to take a step back and take things slow) and will instead focus on basic training exercises to build his body up for the 2011 season.

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It seems Mayumi is ok with Keisuke Kano also wanting to be a catcher (in addition to being an outfielder).

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Yuya Ando apparently didn't want to get a punch perm and instead got himself a buzz cut.  On Wednesday, Ando practiced outdoors for the first time this off-season and later told reporters that he planned on getting some throwing in before the end of the month.

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The Hanshin Tigers appear to be moving forward with plans to schedule an exhibition game against the Rakuten Eagles at Koshien Stadium sometime before / after their exhibition game against the Yomiuri Giants on the 3/13.

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The Tigers will be holding a press conference tomorrow to announce their signing of Kosuke Kato.

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The Hanshin Tigers announced on Wednesday that Fumitaka Ito was joining the staff.  Ito will be helping the team develop their younger players and provide support to injured players.