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[6/15/2013] Nippon Ham, Softbank

by on Jun.15, 2013 @ 3:51 pm, under NPB

Nippon Ham Fighters

1st round draft pick Shohei Otani's next start after the 18th (vs Hiroshima at Mazda Stadium) will most likely come on seven day of rest on the 26th against Softbank at Tokyo Dome.

Beginning in July, the rotation will include Masaru Takeda, Mitsuo Yoshikawa, Brian Wolfe, Hiroshi Kisanuki, Keisuke Tanimoto and a sixth, as of yet undecided, starter.  Candidates could include Masaru Nakamura and Bobby Keppel.

Source: Sponichi 6/15/2013

Softbank Hawks

Nobuhiko Matsunaka was apparently not happy that he was called on as a pinch-hitter in the 8th inning against Yakult on Thursday because he was told, at least once, sometime before the 5th inning, that he would not be used in the game.

"I was told I would not play so I had to go in cold.  During my seventeen years as a professional player, I have made it a point to make sure I am properly prepared.  That was something I did not want to concede [at the time] and I reacted.  I was prepared the suffer the consequences. ... I am sorry for spoiling the moment," said Matsunaka.

He phoned Koji Akiyama on Thursday night to apologize and left a note to his teammates on a whiteboard after gathering his things at YafuOku Dome on Friday.  His demotion to Ni-gun will be for an indefinite amount of time.

Source: Nikkan Sports 6/15/2013

Daily Sports adds that Matsunaka was actually preparing himself for a possible late-inning appearance early during the game, but stopped for one reason or another after the 5th.  The message he wrote on the whiteboard: "I am sorry for spoiling the Inter-league championship.  Please continue to do your best to win a league championship."

Source: Daily Sports 6/15/2013

Matsunaka also posted a brief apology on his blog.

Source: blog post