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[10/27/2013] Draft News and Notes

by on Oct.28, 2013 @ 2:51 am, under NPB

Orix Buffaloes

  • Hikaru Ito (24) knows 1st round draft pick Kazumasa Yoshida (24) from when they played against each other during junior high school.  He hopes to help the rookie out. [Daily Sports 10/27/2013]

Softbank Hawks

  • According to Tokyo Sports, some people are concerned about 1st round draft pick Ren Kajiya (21) because he keeps to himself and appears to have a difficult time talking to others -- he does not go out much, does not hang out with teammates very often, and tends to say the wrong things at the wrong time.  For example, when asked about his impressions of the Softbank Hawks, he replied, "...Koji Akiyama?  He is a nice person..."  JR Kyushu manager Hiroyuki Yoshida was disappointed Kajiya could not say more about the organization since their team has played a number of practice games against them.  He was also befuddled when the pitcher told reporters the first person he contacted after finding out he was a 1st round pick was his girlfriend. [Tokyo Sports 10/27/2013]
  • The Hawks are planning to convert 4th round draft pick Seiji Uebayashi into a second baseman.  He played center in high school and has not played the infield since elementary school. [Sponichi 10/27/2013]

Seibu Lions

  • The Lions could include 1st round draft pick Tomoya Mori (18) in their list of players attending A-Group (Ichi-gun) Spring Camp next year.  The coaches want to see Mori and will likely allow him to do his own thing, unless he needs direction. [Daily Sports 10/27/2013, Sponichi 10/27/2013]

Rakuten Eagles

  • Keiji Nakamura, 1st round draft pick's Yuki Matsui's (17) manager when he played for the Aoba Midori Higashi Senior team, is worried about how things might play out between the rookie and Hiromoto Okubo, Rakuten's Ni-gun manager.  Matsui apparently has a tendency to talk without the proper honorifics and Okubo can be very strict when it comes to manners.  There is also Okubo's somewhat checkered history with Seibu's Yusei Kikuchi.  Nakamura is hoping another former Aoba Midori Higashi Senior player on the Rakuten roster, Aoi Enomoto, can provide Matsui with guidance and support. [Tokyo Sports 10/27/2013]

Chunichi Dragons

  • 2nd round draft pick Katsuki Matayoshi (22) is ready to take on whatever role the coaches give him: starter, middle reliever, closer.  In junior high and high school, he was an infielder and outfielder.  When he played high school, he once through 200 baseballs a day for two weeks as a batting practice pitcher.  He also did a lot of throwing on consecutive days when he played college ball. [Nikkan Sports 10/27/2013]

Hiroshima Carp

  • The Carp visited 3rd round draft pick Kosuke Tanaka (24) at the JR Higashi training facilities in Chiba on Saturday.  While Hiroshima does have a fairly set infield at the moment -- Kila Ka'aihue at first, Ryosuke Kikuchi at second, Eishin Soyogi at short, and Shota Dobayashi at third -- there are some concerns about Soyogi's knees.  Kenjiro Nomura also asked scouts to find an infielder and Tanaka was the best option available.  "Nomura said he wanted to infielder and Tanaka was listed as the best amateur position player.  He can run and he is a solid defender.  The question is how well he can hit.  He can make the Ichi-gun roster," said Yoshinori Ogata, the scout that was in charge of Tanaka. [Daily Sports 10/27/2013]

Hanshin Tigers

  • 1st round draft pick Yuta Iwasada (22) does not use his mobile phone very much and only turns it on when he checks for messages in the morning and night. [Daily Sports 10/27/2013] ... Iwasada started a practice game against Kanagawa University on Sunday.  He gave up three runs on five hits over four innings of work. [Nikkan Sports 10/27/2013]
  • 2nd round draft pick Shintaro Yokota (18) could be assigned the number thirty-one.  Wei-Chu Lin wore the number this past season.  [Nikkan Sports 10/27/2013]
  • The Tigers were not expecting Ryutaro Umeno (22) to be around in the 4th round when they selected him.  There are questions about whether or not they can develop catchers since their last three top catchers were all brought in from other teams -- Akihiro Yano, Kenji Jojima, and Atsushi Fujii.  A number of catching prospects they have drafted over the years -- including, but not limited to, Jin Nakatani out of high school in 1997, Ryo Asai out of university in 2001, Taichi Okazaki out of the Industrial League in 2004, Ryohei Hashimoto out of high school in 2006, Takashi Shimizu out of university in 2006, Masahiro Nakatani out of high school in 2010 -- but none have had much success.  And of the three that are still in the organization -- Okazaki, Shimizu, and M. Nakatani -- the last in the group has been converted to an outfielder. [ZakZak 10/27/2013]