The Pacific League (PL) has reportedly decided to name Lotte manager Tsutomu Ito as their replacement manager for the All-Star series.
Rakuten's Senichi Hoshino was slated to manage the PL during the All-Star series, but he took a leave of absence after he underwent procedures to treat ossification of thoracic yellow ligament and a herniated lumbar disc. When pitching coach Yoshinori Sato was named interim manager on May 26, the PL agreed to let him take on the reins with Hoshino acting as an unofficial chief manager. But a little over a month later, the Eagles moved Sato back to pitching coach and brought up Ni-gun manager Hiromoto Okubo to be their newest interim manager.
The PL had to go back to the drawing board and once again approached Hoshino to see if he might somehow be able to step in as manager. He originally agreed, but later had to withdraw because he was still in no condition to manage. Since last year's second place team also turned to an interim manager this season, the PL had no other choice but to go with the manager from last year's third place team, Tsutomu Ito.
[UPDATE @ 5:36pm]
The Pacific League announced that Lotte's Tsutomu Ito will be their manager for the All-Star series. Seibu's interim manager Norio Tanabe and Rakuten's interim manager Hiromoto Okubo will be coaches.
Source: Nikkan Sports 7/14/2014
[UPDATE @ 5:56pm]
Hoshino recommended Ito to the Pacific League. He also reached out to him a few days earlier.
"[Senichi] Hoshino called me two or three days ago. He said he had to withdraw [as manager] because he was still having a hard time walking and that he wanted me to accept. What could I do after he asked me like that? I have to provide whatever support I can," Ito said to reporters today.
Source: Daily Sports 7/14/2014
[UPDATE @ 9:21pm]
An official announcement has been posted at the 2014 Mazda All-Star series website.