Hiroki Kokubo was held out of the starting line-up on Saturday because he tweaked his neck while playing defense on Friday.
Fumiya Nishiguchi's streak of starts without a complete game ended Sunday at 102 games with a 1-0 shutout over the Nippon Ham Fighters (he hadn't recorded a complete game since 6/4/2006 and a shutout since 8/27/2005). Nishiguchi is also the oldest pitcher in franchise history to record a shutout at 38 years and 11 months. The previous record of 38 years and 3 months was set by Osamu Higashio.
Yusei Kikuchi threw 28 pitches in the bullpen on Saturday in preparation for his next start on the 31st (vs Rakuten).
Nippon Ham Fighters
Sho Nakata does not have a hit in his last 20 at bats (26 plate appearances). He does have 5 walks, 5 strikeouts, and 1 sac fly.
Yamasaki Takashi is helping Mizuno (he has an advisory contract with them) with a new "power bat" for kids (center of gravity is located closer to the head of the bat). A trial bat was unveiled during an event at Rakuten Stadium on Sunday. The bat is scheduled for a release some time next Spring.