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Chunichi, Yakult, Yomiuri, Hanshin, Hiroshima, Yokohama: July 31, 2012

by on Jul.31, 2012 @ 5:20 pm, under NPB

Chunichi Dragons

Masahiro Araki's left hamstring appears to be ok as he was added to the active roster today.

Yakult Swallows

Wladimir Balentien (right hamstring tightness) should be ok for a return to the starting line-up today.  Source: Sanspo 7/31/2012

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The Swallows see Hugo Kanabushi as a possible candidate for the sixth spot in the starting rotation.  Ryosuke Yagi, another candidate, is slated to start a game against Chunichi (at Jingu) on August 4.  Source: Sanspo 7/31/2012

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Nikkan Sports notes that Shinya Miyamoto could consider retirement if he experiences any major setbacks with his recent injury (fracture in the right sixth costal cartilage).

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Team captain Ryoji Aikawa gathered all the players together after Sunday's game to tell everyone that they needed to do their best and hold the fort down and win as many games as possible while Miyamoto was out.  Source: Daily Sports 7/31/2012

Yomiuri Giants

The Giants are 44-1-4 in games where they have the lead after six innings.

The bullpen has also gone sixty-seven consecutive games without a loss (they last recorded a loss on April 22 vs Yakult).  That is good for third best in franchise history: 115 games in 1989, sixty-eight games in 1940, and sixty-seven games in 1941.

Source: Sponichi 7/31/2012

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The starting rotation over the next six days (and possibly longer, assuming no injuries and rainouts): Hirokazu Sawamura (Tuesday), Dicky Gonzalez (Wednesday), Toshiya Sugiuchi (Thursday), Tetsuya Utsumi (Friday), Dennis Houlton (Saturday), and Ryosuke Miyaguni (Sunday).  Source: Sanspo 7/31/2012

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Shinnosuke Abe is not quite 100% (left heel), but Tatsunori Hara told reporters today that he should good enough to pinch-hit.  Source: Nikkan Sports 7/31/2012

Hanshin Tigers

The Tigers are planning to bat Ryota Arai in either the six or seven hole in the line-up -- the three hole was too high and did not allow him to swing the bat as freely, or with as much power.  Source: Daily Sports 7/31/2012

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The Tigers could give Daiki Enokida a look as a starter because 1) the bullpen is doing ok without him, 2) they have Robert Zarate, if they need another arm in the bullpen, 3) it will mean less strain on his body since he will no longer have to pitch on consecutive days.  If they do decide to give Enokida a shot at starting, they will most likely give him a few starts at Ni-gun first.  Daily Sports 7/31/2012

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The Tigers will most likely limit Kyuji Fujikawa's outings to one inning per appearance, so long as the rest of the bullpen, like Shinobu Fukuhara and Kazuya Tsutsui, continue to pitch well.  Source: Sanspo 7/31/2012

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Yuya Ando could get a start against the Hiroshima Carp (at Mazda Stadium) on August 3.  Source: Sanspo 7/31/2012

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Randy Messenger has an interest in the Olympic beach volleyball tournament because one of his former battery-mates from the US, Matt Treanor, has a wife, Misty May-Treanor, that is competing in the event.  Source: Nikkan Sports 7/31/2012

Hiroshima Carp

Kenjiro Nomura spent some time working directly with the slumping Takahiro Iwamoto on his hitting during practices on Monday.  Source: Sponichi 7/31/2012

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Akihiro Higashide, who is making his way back from a fracture in his right middle finger, has played in three rehab Ni-gun games (4-for-8) since July 27 and appears to be close to an Ichi-gun return.  Hiroshima is playing it safe and will wait a bit longer before calling him up.  Source: Sports Hochi Osaka 7/31/2012

Yokohama Bay Stars

Part of Yoshitomo Tsutsugo's problem may have to do with the injury he sustained to the triangular fibrocartilage ligament in his right wrist last season.  Tsutsugo told reporters the injury was not causing him any problems, but Kiyoshi Nakahata had something else to say about it on Monday.

"Young players need to practice, even if it means they break.  They can not improve themselves if doctors throw up a red flag the moment they begin to hit well. ... What I am saying is that [Tsutsugo] needs to put his career on the line and try to return in ten days.  He should try whatever he can and if the right wrist gets worse, then we will go with surgery, but if everything is ok, then we can bring him back up," said Nakahata.

Source: Sports Hochi 7/31/2012

Tsutsugo is also scheduled to get his left wrist evaluated on Wednesday (HBP from Friday's game against the Hanshin Tiger) -- there is still pain, but not enough to stop him from taking batting practice.  Source: Sponichi 7/31/2012