Chugoku Shimbun is carrying a report on how the Hiroshima Carp look at foreign players. Amongst some of the things mentioned:
- The club has apparently doubled the amount of money they are spending on foreign player salaries (compared to 5 years ago) and are putting more effort into increasing their coverage on US players (like hiring Scott McClain to help Erik Schullstrom).
- They check all 30 teams and currently have about video on about 150 players.
- Each player is given a grade: A, AB, B, BC, and C. For example, three players the Carp are close to agreements with: Dennis Sarfate was given an A and both Bryan Bullington and Chad Tracy an AB.
- The Carp will likely have 6 foreign players on the roster next year with a total salary that could go over US$4M, which apparently would be a first for the club.
- The Carp tend to put together contracts that include buyouts for the second year. This is something they learned to do after they were burned in the late 1990's with multi-year deals.
- The Carp also put in a lot to help make the players comfortable in Japan.
Takahiro Aoki worked out at Mazda Stadium on Wednesday. It seems Aoki is thinking about dropping his arm angle a bit lower (he's throwing at about three-quarters right now) in order to make it harder for batters to see the ball out of his hand.
Kenta Maeda apparently wants to pitch until he's 40.