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Softbank Hawks Spring Camp News and Notes: February 3, 2011

by on Feb.04, 2011 @ 1:18 am, under NPB

This post will be updated throughout the day.

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Munenori Kawasaki, Toshiya Suigiuchi, Seiichi Uchikawa, and Keiji Nakahara visited Akae Matsubara Special Needs School after practice today.

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Players and coaches working out on the secondary field (mostly running and various strengthening exercises) wore masks on Wednesday due to the ash in the air.  The coaches also told the players that masks would continue to be used during exercises on the secondary field moving forward.

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Hitoshi Tamura started early morning workouts on Wednesday -- he arrived at the stadium at around 8am and spent over an hour doing various strengthening exercises.  He also stood in the batter's box during bullpen sessions to help him get re-acquainted to live pitching.

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Sugiuchi threw 58 pitches in the bullpen on Wednesday.  Sugiuchi is trying not to throw more than 500 pitches during spring camp this year in order to preserve his strength for the season.  Last year, Sugiuchi threw 549 total pitches.  To put that into perspective, the rest of the team averaged about 1,000 pitches during spring camp; Shota Oba led all pitchers with 1,534; Takahiro Mahara threw the least at 529.

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Tsuyoshi Wada threw 46 pitches to a squatting catcher on Wednesday.

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Oba worked with special temporary pitching coach Kazuhiro Takeda on Wednesday.

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Yuki Shimooki popped a blister on his right middle finger on Wednesday and couldn't do anything throwing practice.  He instead did some shadow pitching under the supervision of pitching coach Ikuo Takayama.  Takayama also wasn't too happy about the blister and questioned Shimooki on what it was he did during the break.

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Jose Ortiz started taking BP in the cages on Wednesday.  Still no timetable for when he'll be able to rejoin the rest of the team for regular practice.

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Alex Cabrera took 57 swings of the bat during BP on Wednesday and hit 4 over the fence.  Regarding the new baseball, Cabrera told reporters that the ball felt a little heavy, not during BP, but when throwing the ball.

During batting practice today, Cabrera took 46 swings and hit 10 over the fence (including 4 in row).  He later told reporters that he wasn't swinging for the fences and was just trying to swing the bat the way he wanted to.

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Uchikawa took two kinds of soft toss BP yesterday: the first involves hitting the ball while making the figure 8 with his bat; and the second is hitting the ball after it bounces once on the ground.  For those interested, his methods (6 in all) were actually documented by Nippon TV's Going! Sports & News program.  There's a version of it up at YouTube.  Don't know how long it'll last though.

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Hiroki Kokubo tested his home batting gloves on the first day of camp and his road batting gloves on the second day of camp (Wednesday).

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Shuhei Fukuda showed up at the Saitozaki training facilities on Wednesday after being sent down due to an injury (right hamstring strain).  Kazumi Saito told reporters he wanted to find some time to talk to Fukuda to make sure he wasn't too down about his injury.