Masahiro Yamamoto won his 212th game as a Dragon on Monday and became the winningest pitcher in franchise history, surpassing Shigeru Sugishita's 211 victories. His two victories since turning forty-six also puts him in a second place tie on the All-time list with Kimiyasu Kudo -- first place belongs to Shinji Hamazaki with four wins.
It should also be noted that of the four victories Hamazaki has, three came in relief. And both of Kudo's victories were also in relief. That makes Yamamoto the only pitcher, forty-six years or older, to record two victories as a starter.
Shohei Tateyama told reporters he ended up throwing over sixty pitches in the bullpen before his rain-delayed start (thirty-three minutes) against the Hiroshima Carp on Monday.
Shinya Miyamoto needs just four more hits to reach 2,000. Sponichi notes that no player has ever recorded four consecutive hits to reach 2,000. They also mention that Miyamoto has had nine four (or more) hit games in his career.
Tatsunori Hara told reporters today that Shinnosuke Abe will be left out of the starting line-up today to get some rest (he also has some tightness in his lower back).
Shuichi Murata dropped down a sac bunt on Monday for the first time since May 24, 2006.
Michihiro Ogasawara was replaced by a pinch-hitter on Monday for the first time since September 16, 2006.
The Yomiuri-Hanshin game on Monday ended in a 0-0 tie. The only other time in league history the same two teams finished in a game in a 0-0 tie: November 7, 1943.
Akihito Fujii was cleared to play in his first rehab game today (Ikusei game vs Industrial League team J Project). Fujii was the starting DH and batted fifth. He went 0-for-5 with two strikeouts (looking) and one RBI.
The Tigers held a press conference for newly acquired Ryota Imanari today. He was assigned the number 49.
Atsushi Nomi practiced with the team on Monday and told reporters that he was fine. Nomi took a batted ball of his left shin on Saturday and was excused from practices on Sunday. He is expected to make his next start on May 4 (vs Yomiuri at Koshien).
Ryuhei Matsuyama and Takahiro Iwamoto are candidates to take over at first.
Kenta Maeda told reporters on Monday night that the thirty-three minute rain delay messed with his pre-game preparations and hinted that it was the reason he ran out of gas.
"I went to strong. I did not want to give up any early runs so I pushed too hard. ... I did not know the game was going to start. The game just started suddenly. ... There was not enough time for me to warm-up my shoulder again. It was a difficult situation," said Maeda.
Yokohama Bay Stars
Sponichi notes that only five other teams have been shutout eight times in one month. They are: the Taiyo Shochiku Robbins (CL) in August 1954; the Daiei Stars (PL) in October 1954; the Daiei Stars (PL) in September 1955; the Kintetsu Pearls (PL) in June 1956; and the Hakyu Braves (PL) in June 1963.
The Sponichi report also mentions that the Bay Stars are the first team to suffer four shutout losses in the first five games of the season against one team (Chunichi) since the start of the two league format. The last team to record four shutout losses in the first five games of the season against one team: Nagoya against Hanshin in 1943.