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CL News and Notes: Tomoaki Kanemoto (HAN) becomes the oldest player in the CL to hit a triple

by on Sep.24, 2011 @ 7:45 am, under NPB

Chunichi Dragons

It'll be a franchise first if the Dragons manage to overtake the Yakult Swallows and finish the year at the top of the standings.  The current franchise high of 8 was set in 1988 and 2010.

Central League record for coming back while 10 or more games down: Yomiuri Giants in 1996 (11.5 games out) and 2008 (13 games out).

The Dragons can also become the 2nd club in NPB history to finish in first despite news that their manager won't be returning next season.  The other club: the 2007 Nippon Ham Fighters when Trey Hillman announced on 9/8 that he wouldn't be returning the following season due to family issues.  (The 2011 Nippon Ham Fighters can also accomplish this as well.)

Hanshin Tigers

Tomoaki Kanemoto recorded a triple on Friday, his first since 4/23/2008 and at the age of 43 years and 5 months.  That broke George Altman's 1975 record of 42 years and 1 month.  The NPB record of 48 years and 4 months was set by Shinji Hamazaki in 1950.

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Ken Nishimura entered yesterday's game against the Yomiuri Giants as a pinch-runner in the bottom of the 9th.  This wasn't the first time Nishimura was called on to do something other than pitch.  On 9/9/2010, he entered a game against the Chunichi Dragons as a defensive replacement in the 10th (he went back and forth between left and right).

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Takumi Akiyama tossed situational BP on Thursday and faced 18 batters while allow 4 could-be hits.

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Team owner Shinya Sakai told reporters on Thursday that he's planning on being a little more vocal during his talks with Akinobu Mayumi after the end of the regular season, regardless of how the team finishes.