Updates on Frederich Cepeda from various sources.
- Tatsunori Hara is planning to use Cepeda in left field.
- The Giants currently have two open spots for foreign players on the active roster -- Chris Seddon is getting extra work at Ni-gun and Leslie Anderson has a right biceps femoris injury.
- If the coaches determine Cepeda is ready after they watch him during pre-game practices on Thursday, they could add him to the active roster on the same day.
- It took Cepeda twenty-one hours to get to Narita Airport from Cuba (includes stop-over in Moscow).
- Cepeda experienced his first earthquake at around 8:30am on Tuesday.
- Cepeda began his workouts at 9:30am on Tuesday. He worked out indoors because of the rain. After warm-ups and playing some catch, he watched Kan Otake toss a bullpen session. During batting practice, he swung the bat ninety-two times, forty-two from the right side and fifty from the left. He recorded fifty-five could-be hits.
- Cepeda took outdoor batting practice on Wednesday. He took fifty-nine swings (both sides of the plate) and recorded twenty-one could-be hits. He also hit four over the fence. Ni-gun Ikusei coach Koji Goto (right-handed) and Ni-gun pitching coach Hideyuki Awano (left-handed) tossed batting practice.
- There may be some internal concerns about Cepeda's fielding abilities and how that might affect which foreign players make the active roster.
For those wondering why the Giants got Cepeda, Tokyo Sports provides a possible explanation. The organization provided Cuba with a list of players they were interested in. Whether or not Yulieski Gourriel was on the list is unknown, but seems likely. The Giants may have gotten Cepeda based on apparent need and because they could not guarantee an infield position for Gourriel.
Source: Tokyo Sports 5/14/2014
Nikkan Sports posted an exclusive interview with Cepeda on the 10th. Some points from the interview:
- ...is right-handed. He became a switch-hitter at six years of age when his father taught him how.
- ...wants to provide the Giants with good value on his contract, both with his bat and his glove. Believes he can succeed in Japan if he takes advantage of every opportunity he gets and continues to work hard.
- ...is proud of what teammate and fellow countryman Leslie Anderson has accomplished in Japan so far. Does not consider him a rival and hopes to work with him to help the team win.
- ...wore the number twenty-four in Cuba. Could not select twenty-four with the Giants because it is worn by Yoshinobu Takahashi. Went with twenty-three because it was the closest number available.
Source: Nikkan Sports 5/14/2014
Cepeda's interaction with media after first day of practices on Tuesday:
How do you feel?
I feel good. But it was a long flight so I am feeling a little tired. I think I had a pretty good feel for things today. I think I need a little more time for the jet lag to go away.
What do you think of Giants Stadium?
It is a very nice facility. They have everything a player needs for practicing and developing. I think it's what every player would want.
What are you goals?
First, to get on the field. To do that, I need to practice. Second, to put up results. I am focused on that.
Have you learned any Japanese words?
You were throwing the ball and swinging the bat fairly hard.
I am always 100 percent. I am ready to get the call any time.
What about playing in games?
It's been about two months, so I am a little worried. But that is why I am practicing.
Source: Sanspo 5/13/2014