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[5/23/2013] Nippon Ham, Seibu, Softbank, Rakuten, Lotte

by on May.24, 2013 @ 4:22 am, under NPB

Nippon Ham Fighters

Hideki Kuriyama did not give reporters any clues on how he plans to use 1st round draft pick Shohei Otani.  Kuriyama will most likely see how Otani is feeling over the next few days before setting a schedule.

Source: Sanspo 5/23/2013

According to Sponichi, over 6,000 fans waited outside of Sapporo Dome on Thursday before the stadium gates opened.

Nikkan Sports reports that 6,617 people were in line when the gates to the stadium opened at about 4:25pm.  Compare that to the 4,015 people that lined up for the home opener on April 5 (vs Softbank).

Source: Sponichi 5/23/2013, Nikkan Sports 5/23/2013

The Fighters sold over 25,000 pre-advance tickets for Thursday's game.

Source: Sponichi 5/23/2013

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On Wednesday, at forty-years and nine months, Atsunori Inaba joined Yasunori Oshima as the only players in franchise history over forty to hit a grand slam.  Oshima accomplished the feat twice: at forty years and eleven months on September 18, 1991 and forty-three years and six months on May 4, 1994 (NPB record for oldest player to hit a grand slam).

Inaba with the bases loaded when he played for Yakult: 18-for-66, 2 HR, 58 RBI.  With Nippon Ham: 36-for-90, 3 HR, 85 RBI.

Source: Sponichi 5/23/2013

Seibu Lions

Kazuhisa Makita still had some swelling in his right knee on Thursday.  He spent the day getting treatment and did not participate in team practices.

Source: Nikkan Sports 5/23/2013

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The Lions will give Dennis Sarfate a look as the closer.  Tatsuya Oishi will pitch in a regular relief role.

Source: Sponichi 5/22/2013

Softbank Hawks

Takehito Kanazawa's wife gave birth to the couple's second child, a boy weighing 3,840 grams, on Wednesday at 11:56am.

Source: Nikkan Sports 5/22/2013

Rakuten Eagles

Ryo Hijirisawa has not committed an error since September 22, 2010 (vs Nippon Ham).  On Thursday, he tied Tatsuya Ozeki's PL record for outfielders with 658 consecutive chances without an error.  The CL record of 817 was set by Eiji Fujii.

Source: Sports Hochi 5/23/2013

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Shinichiro Koyama got a Mohawk-style on Thursday morning.

Source: Nikkan Sports 5/23/2013

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Masahiro Tanaka is the fourth pitcher in PL history to start two separate seasons with a seven-game or more winning streak.

Choji Murata (eleven-game winning streaks in 1981 and 1985), Tai-Yuan Kuo (a ten-game winning streak in 1988 and a nine-game winning streak in 1994), Takayuki Shinohara (a fourteen-game winning streak in 1999 and an eight-game winning streak in 2000), and Tanaka (seven-game winning streaks in 2009 and 2012).

In eleven starts against pitchers born in 1988, Tanaka is now 10-0.

Source: Nikkan Sports 5/23/2013

Momoiro Clover Z's overture was played when Tanaka took the mound in the 1st inning on Wednesday.  Funky Monkey Babys' Atohitotsu was played when he took the mound in the 9th.

Source: Sanspo 5/23/2013

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The Eagles recorded the first Kleenex Stadium sellout of the year on Wednesday -- they sold all the tickets partway through the game at around 8:00pm.

Source: Sponichi 5/23/2013

Chiba Lotte Marines

1st round draft pick Takahiro Matsunaga was not available to pitch on Thursday because of tonsilitis and a fever.

Source: Sponichi 5/23/2013