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Hanshin Tigers: March 18, 2012

by on Mar.18, 2012 @ 11:42 pm, under NPB

Today's Kyoiku League game against Softbank, at Naruohama: 2nd round draft pick Hiroaki Saiuchi entered the game in the 6th and allowed a run (on a solo homer) one hit over an inning of work.  5th round draft pick Ryoma Matsuda tossed a shutout inning in relief and struck out two in a row. [Nikkan Sports]

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Randy Messenger's next start will likely be against the Hiroshima Carp (at Rexxam Stadium) on March 20.

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Tomoaki Kanemoto is scheduled to start Wednesday's game against the Hiroshima (at Kyocera Dome) in left. He did not play in today's game against Seibu and will not play in tomorrow's game against Hiroshima.

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Akihito Fujii and Shinjiro Hiyama played in a Kyoiku League game against Softbank today.  Fujii was the starting catcher and played through to the 5th inning and did not have a hit in two trips to the plate.  Hiyama entered the game as a pinch-hitter in the the 5th inning with runners on first and second and flied out to center.  He remained in the game as a DH and struck out swinging in his second at bat in the 8th.

Fujii could rejoin the Ichi-gun team on Tuesday and play in a game as early as Wednesday.

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Hiroki Uemoto started working out at Naruohama on Saturday.  Uemoto currently has his left elbow in a brace  (will need it for about three weeks) and will do exercises that focus on other parts of his body.  His workouts over the next two weeks or so will likely be limited to indoor exercises.

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Kyuji Fujikawa took a ball off his left leg during fielding practice on Saturday.  He was ok, but jokingly dragged his foot and told reporters that he was going to pitch even if his leg was broken.

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Matt Murton apparently tweaked his left hamstring during Friday's game against the Chiba Lotte Marines.  While the injury does not seem to be serious (Yutaka Wada told reporters he would be playing if this were the regular season), it is what it is and the team is playing it safe.  There is no set timetable for his return, but he could be back with the Ichi-gun sometime on or after March 21.

NOTE: Craig Brazell told reporters that while he had no interest in playing right because he was a first baseman, he would prepare accordingly since things can change during the season.

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Shunsuke returned to Osaka on Saturday because of fever (not the flu).

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Minoru Iwata worked out at the indoor training facilities at Koshien on Saturday and told reporters he really wanted more time to pitch before the start of the regular season (too much practice, not enough games).

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Takahiro Arai usually takes about eight minutes of batting practice, but on Saturday, he pushed that to about twenty minutes.

====== UPDATE @ 11:52pm JST

It seems there is a little more to the Fujikawa story...  According to Sponichi, Fujikawa was assisting with fielding practice drills by catching baseballs thrown in from fielders when Kazuya Tsutsui made an errant throw that bounced off the area above his left knee.  Fujikawa dropped to the ground and was later seen dragging his left foot around.  As he climbed into the bus he jokingly said, "I was taken out by Tsutsui.  Whatever.  I am actually ok."

Fujikawa must have really been ok since he tossed one shutout inning in relief against the Seibu Lions today.