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Hanshin Tigers Spring Camp News and Notes: February 20, 2011

by on Feb.20, 2011 @ 12:00 pm, under NPB

This post will be updated throughout the day.


Today's intra-squad game:

Starters for today's game -- Atsushi Nomi for the white team; Yasutomo Kubo for the red team.

Nomi did not allow a run over 2 innings of work, but did surrender 4 hits.  Kubo did not give up a run or a hit (but did walk 1) during his 2 innings of work.

Daiki Enokida (1st round) entered the game in the 5th inning for the whites and gave up 1 run on 1 hit over 2 innings of work; he also struck out 3.  The 1 run Enokida allowed came on a lead-off solo homer by Taichi Okazaki in the 5th.  After that, he got three ground ball outs and struck out the side in the 6th (Kenichi Tagami struck out swinging on a slider to the outside corner; Issei Morita struck out looking on a pitch to the inside corner; and Marcos Vechionacci struck out swinging on a pitch out to the outside corner).

Matt Murton started in right and batted 3rd for the red team.  He hit a single between short and third in his first at bat and flew out to right in his second at bat.  Craig Brazell was the starting DH and batted 4th for the red team.  He hit a single to right-center and grounded into a double play in his second at bat.

Takahiro Arai started at third and batted 4th for the white team and went 0-for-2.  He was then substituted on defense in the 5th when his brother, Ryota, shifted over from first to third.

Yesterday's intra-squad game:

The reds beat the whites, 3-2 (8 innings).

Tatsuya Kojima started the game for the whites and allowed 1 run over 3 innings of work.

Masanori Fujihara entered the game in the 4th for the whites and did not allow a run over 2 innings of work.  He did, however, surrender 3 hits, all to left-handed batters.

Kazuya Tsutsui entered the game in the 7th for the whites and pitched an inning and gave up a run on 2 hits.

Shunsuke Fujikawa started in left and batted lead-off for the white team.  He went 1-for-4.

Katsuhiko Saka started in center and batted lead-off for the red team.  He went 1-for-4.  The hit was his first in his 11th trip to the plate.

Kohei Shibata started in center and batted 7th for the white team.  He collected a hit and 2 RBI (2-run single to right in the 2nd).  Shibata also showed off his arm by throwing out a runner at home (5th inning, 1 out, runners on first and second; and after Shibata was moved over to left).

Kenichi Tagami started in right and batted 9th for the white team.  He went 0-for-2.

===== 2/20 @ 3:51pm

As mentioned previously, Jojima is scheduled to get his knee checked out on the 24th.  Depending on the results, Jojima could take the next step forward in his rehab -- more catching in the bullpen, dashes, sliding.

For practice yesterday, Jojima was the first to arrive at 7:26am.  He also ran a 60-meter distance 12 times.

===== 2/20 @ 12:00pm

Both Matt Murton and Craig Brazell are scheduled to play in today's intra-squad game.


Tomoyuki Kubota threw 52 pitches in the bullpen yesterday.  He told reporters everything went as planned and that there were no problems with him physically.  The team still isn't sure whether or not to send him back to Osaka with the rest of the Ni-gun players on the 23rd.


Hiroyuki Kobayashi threw 95 pitches in the bullpen yesterday (a spring camp high for him).

Kobayashi - "It just happened naturally.  I wasn't pitching very well at first, so I checked on a few things.  I had thrown in 2 days so..."

Kobayashi's scheduled outing as a BP pitcher on the 17th was canceled due to tightness in his neck.  The fact that he threw so much yesterday means he's most likely alright.  Kobayashi is also scheduled to make an appearance during tomorrow's intra-squad game.


Via Daily Sports: Battery coach Yasuo Yoshida told reporters the day before yesterday that worst case scenario, Kenji Jojima returns to the active roster in June.  When Jojima heard that, he immediately approached Yoshida and the two spoke for about 10 minutes (away from the media).  In the end, they both apparently agreed that Jojima would continue to focus on being ready for opening day.  Jojima also spoke to Akinobu Mayumi.

After practice, a different story emerged -- Jojima told reporters that he would prepare with a June comeback in mind since Yoshida told him that would be fine.  He then added, "The player's job is to do his best to make sure he's ready by opening day.  That's what it means to be an everyday player.  You need to do your best.  Even on most days, it isn't possible to play at 100%.  You need to accept that risk. ... There's no guarantee I'll be at 100% come June.  And who knows, I could always get injured in June."


Takuya Takahama can play short, third, and the outfield.