Toshiya Sugiuchi can tie a PL record that was last set in 1966 by Taisuke Watanabe. Sugiuchi has tossed back-to-back complete game shutouts in his last two start and needs just one more to tie the PL record.
The media learned yesterday that the Hawks have already approached Tsuyoshi Wada, Munenori Kawasaki, and Toshiya Sugiuchi about staying with the team, despite earning their FA options.
Suiguchi earned his domestic FA option on 4/15; Kawasaki could earn an international FA option on 6/19; and Wada an international option on 9/3.
Nippon Ham Fighters
Yuki Saito's Ni-gun rehab start was rained out today. He'll instead pitch 2 innings in relief in tomorrow's Ni-gun game against Yomiuri.
Masataka Nashida comments on Sho Nakata batting fourth in the line-up:
He shouldn't feel like he has to hit the ball because he's batting fourth. He should just relax out there. ... I'm not sure if he's tensing up a little because he's batting fourth... But it isn't like we're going to make him do hit and runs or bunts.
Yuki Nishi will likely start today's game against the Chunichi Dragons.
Chihiro Kaneko is scheduled to start his last rehab Ni-gun game today against Yokohama. Assuming it doesn't get rained out and he pitches on 6 days of rest, he could rejoin the active roster for a start on 6/4 (vs Hiroshima at Mazda Stadium). That would also put him in line to pitch on 6/11 (vs Yomiuri at Kyocera Dome) and 6/18 (vs Chunichi a Nagoya Dome).
Takahiro Shiomi will likely start today's game against the Hanshin Tigers. He told reporters it was going to be important for him not to wake the sleeping giant.
Hisashi Iwakuma played catch at a distance of 30 meters yesterday. His goal right now is to return to pitching form before the end of June (the plan is for him to rest his shoulder first, then move on to long distance throwing, followed by bullpen sessions). Until then, the Eagles will probably make they starters pitch on 5 days of rest.