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Rakuten Eagles Spring Camp News and Notes: February 4, 2011

by on Feb.04, 2011 @ 12:20 pm, under NPB

This post will be updated throughout the day.

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The Eagles have the day off today.

=== 9:04pm

Takahiro Shiomi (1st round), Manabu Mima (2nd round), Toshihito Abe (3rd round), Koki Kanno (5th round), and Hayato Kawaguchi (Ikusei 3rd round) went site-seeing on their day off today. ... A number of players, including Motohiro Shima and Ryo Hijirisawa, worked out today.

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The Eagles announced today that they will begin accepting orders to Senichi Hoshino's fan club, the 1001 Club, on Saturday.

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Kenji Tomura tossed a bullpen session in each of the three days of the first block of spring camp.  Tomura has been working on keeping his chin down while pitching.

=== 12:20pm

Sanspo notes that Hisashi Iwakuma threw 78 pitches (including his off-speed pitches) in the bullpen yesterday -- it was also his second bullpen since the start of spring camp.

Nikkan Sports mentions 73 pitches and also points out how little Iwakuma's head moves when he pitches (as proof of that, they have a posted one frame out of series of photos they took, a frame that shows his arms in a blur, but his face sharp and clear).  Iwakuma offered the following comments regarding the photo: "I'm not really thinking about keeping my head steady.  But, it isn't like I can close my eyes while I throw the ball either, and I can't throw the ball just by moving my upper body.  I move into my delivery using my lower body and then make use of the slant of the mound to move toward home plate."

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A little more on Norihiro Akahoshi's base stealing session he taught yesterday:

Ryo Hijirisawa, Teppei, Akihisa Makida, Kensuke Uchimura, and Wataru Nishimura were assigned to the session.

Akahoshi boiled it down to three main points: 1) make sure you're full prepared to steal bases by gathering as much data as possible (know the catchers and pitchers and their patterns); 2) don't be afraid of that first step; 3) out / safe calls ultimately come down to how quickly you can slide into a base.

Of the five players, Akahoshi feels Hijirisawa and Uchimura have the potential to win SB titles.

Senichi Hoshino would like to see the team triple their 2010 stolen base output of 78.  Said Hoshino, "I'll let them run as much as they like.  I'll let them try out as many new things as possible.  I want them to run so much that they hate us, that it forces other teams to say how much they hate facing us."