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CL News and Notes: December 25, 2011

by on Dec.26, 2011 @ 1:20 am, under NPB

Chunichi Dragons

Kazuhiro Wada started taking soft toss BP at Nagoya Stadium on Saturday, a couple weeks earlier than usual (he normally begins taking BP in January).

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Ryosuke Hirata will be working out with Masahiro Araki and Yohei Oshima in Kumamoto begining on 1/5/2012.

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About 400 fans showed up to see Oshima speak at a talking session held in a shopping mall in Nagoya on Saturday.

Hanshin Tigers

334 fans attended a Daily Sports Hanshin Tigers' fan party on Sunday that featured Atsushi Nomi and Shinji Komiyama.

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Daiki Enokida made an appearance at a Hanshin Fan Club Christmas Party in Tokyo on Sunday.

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Kentaro Sekimoto and Yuya Ando held a talk session at the Kyoto Race Course on Sunday.

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When reporters asked what, if anything, Yasutomo Kubo planned to do about pitching poorly during the day (1-6 with a 6.18 ERA during night games and 7-2 with a 2.43 ERA during day games), he replied that he would look into a number of things, liking waking up earlier on a regular basis, for the 2012 season.

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Shinjiro Hiyama told reporters on Saturday that his rehab was going well and that he might be able to start his throwing/hitting program on time.  Trainer Yasunori Gonda added that he would know more about where Hiyama was in mid-January.  He also said that it might be beneficial to take Hiyama to Ichi-gun spring camp in Okinawa where he would be able to rehab in the warm weather and the team would have an easier time monitoring his progress.

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Katsuhiko Saka (right elbow surgery in November) was given the green light to begin taking BP and throwing practices in January.

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According to Sanspo, Kenji Jojima has entered the next stage in his rehab program.

"Not so much rehab program, but the next step in physical strengthening exercises.  I will take a look at how he is doing over a two-day period during his training session in Sasebo [Nagasaki] in January and report my findings back to the team," said team trainer Gonda.

Nikkan Sports provides this additional comment from Gonda that seems to indicate his rehab is over: "The rehab training of [Jojima's] workouts are over.  He will now slowly increase his regular training."

And Sports Hochi also has a different set of comments from Gonda: "Sasebo has a lot of hills, but [Jojima] is running them normally. ... He is one step ahead of rehab and is closer to making movements that are needed in order to play baseball."

Jojima is now able to run for about 40 minutes on top of hard surfaces; he is also capable of running hills.

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Tomoaki Kanemoto worked out for about 2 hours in Hawaii on Saturday (running, long distance throwing).

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The media learned on Saturday that Jiro Ueda (assistant to the administrative chief) and Masaaki Suenaga (scout) will be leaving the team after the month.

Yomiuri Giants

Tetsuya Utsumi closed out his training at Giants Stadium on Sunday.  Utsumi will be working out in Guam in January with other players like Tetsuya Yamaguchi, Shun Tono, and Hirokazu Sawamura.

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Hisayoshi Chono and Daisuke Fujimura worked out with sumo wrestler Hakuho on Saturday.

Yakult Swallows

Hiroyasu Tanaka told reporters on Saturday that he is interested in enrolling in ballets classes during the winter to help him become more flexible.  Tanaka is currently working on improving his muscle balance at the Kokuritsu Sports Kagaku Center in Tokyo.

Hiroshima Carp

Yoshihiro Maru participated in a event for fans hosted by Hiroshima FM's Do the Carp on Sunday.

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Ryuhei Matsuyama worked out at Mazda Stadium on Saturday and told reporters that he planned to take a third baseman's glove to spring camp next year.

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1st round draft pick Yusuke Nomura made an appearance at an event for the Kurashiki Vigors, a youth baseball team he used to play for, on Sunday.  About 210 people, including current and former players, attended the event.

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4th round draft pick Shohei Habu mentioned the possibility of joint workout session with other former Waseda alums (like Norichika Aoki, Yuki Saito, and Kenta Matsushita) at the Waseda facilities some time in January.

Habu is expected to start things out at Ichi-gun spring camp next year.

Yokohama Bay Stars

Kiyoshi Nakahata wants to play at least two regular season games in Fukushima in 2013 (like Koriyama Kaiseizan Baseball Stadium).

He also dropped by Shinobugaoka Stadium and stepped into the batter's box for the first time in about 40 years.

FYI: The 37th Annual Charity Musicthon managed to raise 4,617,182 yen (they will be accepting donations through to January 31, 2012) for people with vision problems.