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Yuki Saito News and Notes: January 22, 2011

by on Jan.22, 2011 @ 2:53 pm, under NPB

This post will be updated with information as it becomes available so keep checking back if you have any interest in Yuki Saito.

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Sanspo has some comments that were taken from Saito yesterday:

[Suguru] Egawa watched over your bullpen session...

He was a great player.  If he found anything wrong with my mechanics, I'd be extremely happy / grateful for his advice.

On your session?

I tried to focus on my form and balance.  I think I'm slowly getting there.

How is your fastball?

I take pride in my fastball, but I'm not as interested in power as I am interested in control.  I want to keep improving that.  Other than that, it's actually facing batters.

Differences between this bullpen and your last bullpen?

I threw a little harder this time.  Maybe around 70%.

You also threw some off-speed pitches?

I'm getting a pretty good feel [for the ball].  I just need to get batters to send in the box to check [on my control].

Your plans moving forward?

I want to throw at least two more bullpen sessions.  I'll probably have the catcher squatting during my next session.  But I also need to make sure I don't injure myself [from overdoing it].

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Suguru Egawa told reporters that if Saito continues to polish his pitches, he could become a pitcher like Manabu Kitabeppu (HIR) and win 200 games.  Egawa's comments:

I see nothing wrong with his form.  I think he was only throwing at about 60%, but he was consistently around the plate.  He can throw pitches as if he were playing in a game.

He only threw one pitch above the catcher's head.  That's unusual.  When professional pitchers start throwing, their pitches tend to go up, but that form of his must be good.  He's seems like a strong game day pitcher.

With a good fastball and a slider type pitch...  If he can become a control pitcher like Kitabeppu, I think he can win close to 200 games.

It might not be a lot of fun to continue throwing the same pitch over and over again, but it's about patience and working through that.  If he can do that, his control will improve.

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Masumi Kuwata wants Saito to pace himself and consider his career, 10 - 20 years from now.

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Saito tossed 40 pitches (of which 8 were off-speed) in his bullpen session yesterday.  He also signed about 10 autographs after practice yesterday (in front of the player dorms where I'm guessing it was safe).

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About 2,200 fans showed up at Kumagaya yesterday.

Terry Ito (producer / actor) and Yoko Kumada (gravure idol) also dropped in to visit Saito yesterday.  Ito was there to provide coverage for a radio program.

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Today was the last day of the third block of rookie training camp.

Saito wore a yellow training suit to practice.  He later switched into a white training suit (with shorts and red socks) and used a pink glove when he played catch.