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CL News and Notes: Ikketsu Sho (HAN) could get his first Ichi-gun start on the 14th

by on Aug.09, 2011 @ 3:11 pm, under NPB

Chunichi Dragons

Kazuhiro Wada worked out at Nagoya Dome yesterdayHiromitsu Ochiai also spent about 45 minutes working with Wada on his hitting (Nikkan Sports reports about 30 minutes and 74 swings).  So far in the month of August: 3-for-20, 4 TB, 5 SO, 3 BB, .150/.261/.200.

Hanshin Tigers

Katsuhiko Saka will likely be added to the active roster today.  Saka has been working his way back at Ni-gun ever since he fractured his right index finger during practice on March 30.

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Matt Murton will most likely be back in the starting line (right field, batting lead-off) tonight.  Officially, the team will wait to make their decision until they've had a chance to see how Murton is feeling today.

Murton's family (wife and 2 children) also traveled with him to Nagoya so that they can catch his first game back in the starting line-up.

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Jason Standridge's next start will probably come on the 10th vs Chunichi (Nagoya Dome).  Standridge is 6-0 in 9 starts since his last loss on 5/25 (vs Lotte).  Minoru Iwata will likely follow with  a start on the 10th.  Iwata has dropped his last 4 straight starts and hasn't won a game since 7/1 (vs Yokohama).

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With Daiki Enokida getting rest and making adjustments at Ni-gun, the Tigers will continue to rely on Tatsuya Kojima in key situations.

And speaking of Enokida, he'll pitch during a Ni-gun game either today or tomorrow and, depending on the results, could return to the active roster some time this week.

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Ikketsu Sho could get his first career Ichi-gun start on the 14th (vs Yakult).  And for the first time this season, Sho joined up with the Ichi-gun players for practice yesterday.  Ni-gun numbers: 17 G, 5-4, 80.1 IP, 69 H, 18 BB, 47 SO, 27 R, 23 ER, 2.58 ERA.

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Assistant GM Eichi Kono (高野栄一 sp?) will be accompanying owner Shinya Sakai to the US.  Kono, also chief of player development, is currently scheduled to check out a few minor league games and learn a little about the player development system in the US.

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The media learned that the Tigers likely won't be holding Ichi-gun spring camp at Aki, Kochi next year (no changes will be made at the Ni-gun level) in favor of keeping everything at Ginoza, Okinawa (the were splitting time between the two locations).  The Tigers informed the city of Aki of their plans back in May.  The city isn't too happy about the move and plans on doing what it can to keep them in (have them return to) Aki.  According to Aki officials, they attract around 10,000 tourists during weekdays and 20,000-30,000 tourists on weekends during spring camp.

Yomiuri Giants

Tetsuya Utsumi threw 60 pitches in the bullpen yesterday in preparation for his next start on the 10th vs Yokohama at Yokohama (5 days of rest).  Carlos Torres will probably get Thursday's start (7 days of rest).

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With Hisayoshi Chono most likely out for a couple/few games, the Giants could turn to either Michihiro Ogasawara or Yoshinobu Takahashi to bat third.

Hiroshima Carp

Bryan Bullington could get tonight's start against the Yakult Swallows.  That could then put him in line for another start on the 14th (vs Yomiuri @ Tokyo Dome).  That would give Bullington 5 starts on 4 days of rest so far this year.

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Yuya Fukui worked out at Mazda Stadium yesterday in preparation for his next start on the 11th (vs Yakult).  Fukui's goal for the current season is to record double-digit wins.

Yokohama Bay Stars

Norihiro Nakamura apparently started working out behind the plate last month in case the team needs him to log a few innings as an emergency catcher.