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Samurai Japan News and Notes: February 21, 2013

by on Feb.21, 2013 @ 11:14 pm, under WBC

Bullpen Sessions / Batting Practice

Today

  • Masahiro Tanaka: bullpen, forty-two pitches, second session in as many days
  • Kenta Maeda: bullpen, forty-one pitches
  • Takeru Imamura: bullpen, ? pitches
  • Tetsuya Utsumi: bullpen, 108 pitches

Source: Sponichi 2/21/2013Sports Hochi 2/21/2013, Nikkan Sports 2/21/2013, Nikkan Sports 2/21/2013, Sanspo 2/21/2013

Wednesday

  • Atsushi Nomi: bullpen, 101 pitches, hand someone stand in the right-handed batter's box beginning with his thirty-ninth pitch and someone in the left-handed batter's box beginning with his eighty-fifth pitch

Source: Sponichi 2/21/2013

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Mini-camp in Miyazaki ended today.  The team will head to Osaka on the 22nd and will play practice games against Australia at Kyocera Dome on the 23rd and 24th.

Source: Sports Hochi 2/21/2013, Sponichi 2/21/2013

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Masahiro Tanaka is using a new pair of Energy Boost shoes from adidas.

Source: Sponichi 2/21/2013

Tanaka's control is slowly beginning to improve.  He has made a number of adjustments to his mechanics, including weight distribution on his back leg and the landing for his left foot.

Source: Sports Hochi 2/21/2013

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Kazuhiro Makita is a candidate to close games.

Source: Nikkan Sports 2/21/2013

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Kenta Meada was originally slated to start a practice game against Australia on the 24th, but could now end up being used as a reliever on the 23rd.  Depending on how well he pitches, the coaches may have to re-consider the starters for Game 2 (China on March 3) and Game 3 (Cuba on March 6).

Source: Nikkan Sports 2/21/2013

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Atsushi Nomi could start Game 3 against Cuba.  If Maeda is not able to start Game 2, Nomi could take his spot.

Source: Nikkan Sports 2/21/2013

Hirokazu Sawamura, Hideaki Wakui, and Kenji Otonari are also Game 3 candidates.

Source: Sanspo 2/21/2013

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Koji Yamamoto wants the media to lay off the five players that were cut from the preliminary rosters.  The NPB has also asked members of the media to refrain from approaching the five players until after they have returned to their respective teams.

Source: Sponichi 2/21/2013

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Thirteen TV cameras and about 100 members of the media covered Yamamoto's twenty-eight man roster announcement on Wednesday.

Yamamoto selected Katsuya Kakunaka over Yohei Oshima and Ryo Hijirisawa because he felt there was already enough speed on the team (they also have Yuichi Honda) and he wanted a solid bat off the bench.

Source: Nikkan Sports 2/21/2013

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Over fifty people, including the twenty-eight man roster, the five players that were cut, the coaching staff, and various other staff members, attended a gathering at a restaurant in Miyazaki on Wednesday night.

Shinnosuke Abe started the night out with the following opening remark:

It is unfortunate, but a number of our members did not make it today.  [Those that did make it will] push forward and battle it out as if we are a thirty-three man roster.  Anything can happen during the tournament, so please be prepared.  We needed injury replacements during the last tournament.  Please remember that you are still a member, even after you return to your teams.  This is a complicated situation and it really is too bad.  The manager and coaches had a very difficult decision to make.  Let us consider those feelings and work our hardest.  Let us pull together as one and do our best.

Source: Sponichi 2/21/2013, Sponichi 2/21/2013