The Japan Baseball Rules Committee announced a number of changes to the rulebook today. Amongst the changes: decreasing the maximum allowed diameter of wooden baseball bats from 7cm to 6.6cm (this rule was actually announced last year, but players were given a one-year window to prepare).
The new rules will go into effect on 2/15.
The media learned on Thursday that umpire Masato Tomoyose will be attending the upcoming MLB Umpire Meetings in Phoenix, AZ. Tomoyose will be in Arizona for three days, beginning on 1/16.
This will be the second year in a row that the NPB has sent an umpire to the meetings.
Koji Akiyama will be managing the NPB team during the charity game against the CPBL on March 10. Before leaving for Guam on Thursday, Akiyama told reporters that he spoke to NPB officials about the player selection process on Wednesday.
"I will let the NPB select the players, but we did decide to go with younger players," said Akiyama.