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Orix Buffaloes managerial news and notes: September 26, 2012

by on Sep.26, 2012 @ 2:35 pm, under NPB
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Updates on the Orix Buffaloes' managerial situation from September 26:

  • To clarify, the team basically dismissed Akinobu Okada and Nobuhiro Takashiro when they announced their leaves of absence on Tuesday.
  • Nippon Ham Fighters head coach Junichi Fukura could be a candidate to replace Okada next season. Source: Nikkan Sports 9/26/2012
  • Hisashi Yamada was a guest on an MBS radio program on Tuesday and said he was not taking the rumors that he was a candidate to replace Okada seriously based on past experience.  Said Yamada, "It has been close to ten years since I was manager for Chunichi and every year my name comes up. ... The first names to pop up are the ones everyone can imagine.  That my name is out there again at this time in the process means things have not been narrowed down yet."  Yamada also said that he did not think Hiromitsu Ochiai was a candidate.  He noted his health as one reason.  Source: Sports Hochi Osaka 9/26/2012

Sanspo has posted bits of an interview the media conducted with Okada on Tuesday.

You were supposed to finish out the rest of the season.

Yes, and that is why I look like this.  I should have grabbed a neck-tie.

What did [Orix] say to you?

[They showed me the leave of absence] paper after I came, I had no idea.

What do you think of leaving while in the middle of a losing streak?

Well, it was just three days ago [when they said they wanted me to finish out the season].  The owner even told me that.

Do you have a lot you would like to say?

What?  I came here to manage today.

After they told you what was happening, what did you say?

Well, it was only two or three minutes.  They showed me the paper, said they were going to release it [to the media], and that was it.  It was not even two or three minutes.  It was like that, no time to even ask.

What do you think of how things ended here?

Not much, since this under the contract.  And I knew this was going to be my last year since three days ago.

What did you tell the players?

I told them I would be happy if they could look back over the last three years and remember the things they felt and the things they studied to help them next year.

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UPDATE @ 9:49pm - Team director Yoshio Murayama told reporters that they plan to select a new manager in time for this year's draft (October 25).  Source: Nikkan Sports 9/26/2012

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Orix Buffaloes: Akinobu Okada to take a leave of absence, Hiroshi Moriwaki named interim manager

by on Sep.25, 2012 @ 3:08 pm, under NPB
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The Buffaloes announced today that Akinobu Okada and head coach Nobuhiro Takashiro will take a leave of absence, beginning today.  Chief position player coach Hiroshi Moriwaki will take over as interim manager.

Source: Daily Sports 9/25/2012

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UPDATE @ 5:37pm - Okada spoke to reporters today and said that he was a little confused as to why Orix gave him a leave of absence after they asked him to finish out the rest of the season.  Source: Daily Sports 9/25/2012

UPDATE 9/26 @ 12:30am - Quotes from various personnel...

Buffaloes: "Since we are now guaranteed a last place finish, we felt it best to look forward to next season as soon as possible. "  Source: Nikkan Sports 9/25/2012

Manager Okada: "I had no idea.  I came prepared to manage today's game...  After all, they told me they wanted me to stay until the end [of the season]...  I told the players I would be happy if they could remember everything they worked on over the last three years and use that to help them improve."  Source: Sponichi 9/25/2012

Interim coach Moriwaki: "I want to use the remaining time to set goals and work toward them.  It is during tough times like this that your true worth is tested.  As professionals, we have to do our very best."  Source: Nikkan Sports 9/25/2012

Head coach Takashiro: "It makes me sad to suddenly hear today that I am no longer needed.  The manager and I were prepared to work until October 8 and now we can not."  Source: Nikkan Sports 9/25/2012

Team director Yoshio Murayama: "It is becoming difficult to see what the team goals are.  We need to improve and continue to build up for next season.  I want them to play games that appeal to the fans."  Source: Nikkan Sports 9/25/2012

Orix Buffaloes' player's chairman Fumihiro Suzuki: "We have not put up any results.  There is nothing we can say."  Source: Nikkan Sports 9/25/2012

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Orix Buffaloes: Akinobu Okada and other staff related updates [9/23/2012]

by on Sep.23, 2012 @ 3:44 pm, under NPB
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Updates Akinobu Okada and possible managerial candidates from September 23:

  • Okada's meeting with team director Yoshio Murayama lasted about twenty minutes.  Source: Daily Sports 9/23/2012
  • Hisashi Yamada may be the front runner to replace Okada.  Ni-gun manager Hiromasa Arai is also a possibility.  Source: Sports Hochi Osaka 9/23/2012
  • Ni-gun manager Arai may be the front runner, but the team is considering other candidates like Yamada and Ochiai.  They may also offer So Taguchi a job (the team also considers him a possible future managerial candidate).  Source: Sanspo 9/23/2012

A couple of player responses, via Nikkan Sports:

Dae-Ho Lee: "I am very sorry.  The manager gets replaced because the team is that weak."

T-Okada: "[Okada] was patient and stuck it out with me.  Even though we are in the middle of a losing streak, I want to do what I can to repay him."

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Orix Buffaloes: Akinobu Okada will not return as manager next season

by on Sep.22, 2012 @ 8:09 pm, under NPB
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The Orix Buffaloes announced today that they informed Akinobu Okada that they will not plan to sign him to an extension for the 2013 season.

Under Okada, the Buffaloes finished in fifth with a 69-71-4 record in 2010 and fourth with a record of 69-68-7 in 2011.  The team is currently in the middle of a ten-game losing streak and is in last place with a 50-74-10 record.

Okada is in the final year of a three-year deal.

Source: Nikkan Sports 9/22/2012official announcement

Sponichi: Hiromitsu Ochiai a candidate to replace Akinobu Okada as Orix manager

by on Sep.21, 2012 @ 12:05 pm, under NPB
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Buffaloes' owner Yoshihiko Miyauchi is scheduled to meet with team director Yoshio Murayama some time today in order to discuss Akinobu Okada's status.  That should lead into the team informing Okada of their intentions on Saturday.  Source: Sports Hochi Osaka 9/21/2012

Okada could also join Miyauchi and Murayama for their meeting today.  Source: Sponichi 9/21/2012

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Possible replacement candidates:

Sports Hochi Osaka: Hisashi Yamada is the front runner.

Daily Sports: Ni-gun manager Hiromasa Arai and Yamada are possibilities.

Sponichi: Hiromitsu Ochiai, Masataka Nashida, Arai, and Yamada.

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Sponichi notes that Ochiai's name may have popped up because of how he helped turn the Chunichi Dragons' organization around.  Source: Sponichi 9/21/2012

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UPDATE @ 1:41pm - There were reports that Ochiai suffered a stroke during the summer, but he later explained that is was not a stroke he suffered, but facial paralysis.  He has not canceled any of his public appearances and does not appear to have any difficulties speaking.  Source: Sponichi 9/21/2012

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Orix Buffaloes: This will most likely be Akinobu Okada’s last year

by on Sep.21, 2012 @ 3:29 am, under NPB
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According to a number of reports, the Orix Buffaloes have made a decision on Akinobu Okada.

When reporters asked an unnamed team source on Thursday if the Buffaloes were going to bring in new personnel for the 2013 season, they replied, "[An announcement will be made] once we speak to the manager."

Okada has already left the decision up to the team and is waiting to hear back from them.

Source: Daily Sports 9/21/2012, Sponichi 9/21/2012

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Orix Buffaloes: Akinobu Okada offered unofficial resignation

by on Sep.18, 2012 @ 12:04 pm, under NPB
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According to a report filed by Daily Sports, Akinobu Okada offered an unofficial resignation to the Orix front office for the 2013 season.  The team has not given Okada a reply as of yet.  If the decision becomes final, possible candidates to manage the team next season include Ni-gun manager Hiromasa Arai or Hisashi Yamada.

Said Okada, "I asked them what their plans were for next season.  They told me to wait.  I served the ball into their court so it would odd for me to quit now.  All I can do now is wait.  [After all] they are the ones that hired me."

Source: Daily Sports 9/18/2012

Sports Hochi is also reporting something similar and adds that the team may actively begin talking about the 2013 season once the team is officially eliminated from postseason play, which could happen as early as today.  They also note Yamada may be the front-runner to replace Okada.  Source: Sports Hochi 9/18/2012

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UPDATE @ 9:03pm - The media learned that the team has not asked Okada to return next season.  An unnamed member of the front office told reporters that they had yet to make a decision on the manager.

When reporters spoke to Okada today about when he last spoke to the team about his status for the 2013 season, he said that it was "quite a while back."

Source: Daily Sports 9/18/2012

UPDATE 9/19 @ 12:28am - Team director Yoshio Murayama told reporters he plans on talking to the manager once the season ends.  Source: Nikkan Sports 9/18/2012

UPDATE 9/19 @ 3:14pm - Possible replacement candidates include: Masataka Nashida, Hisashi Yamada, and Ni-gun manager Hiromasa Arai.  Source: Sponichi 9/19/2012

UPDATE 9/19 @ 4:15pm - Okada is scheduled to meet members of the front office in Chiba on Friday. If nothing is finalized during that meeting, he may attempt to meet directly with team owner Yoshihiko Miyauchi.  Source: Daily Sports 9/19/2012

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Akinobu Okada may not return to the Orix Buffaloes next season

by on Aug.20, 2012 @ 3:03 pm, under NPB
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Nikkan Sports is reporting that Akinobu Okada may not be returning to the Orix Buffaloes as manager next season.

Nothing has been decided yet, but it seems this may be Okada's last year at the helm.

Sanspo lists Ni-gun manager Hiromasa Arai and former Nippon Ham manager Masataka Nashida as possible candidates.

Okada is in the final year of a three-year deal.

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Orix Buffaloes: March 28, 2012

by on Mar.29, 2012 @ 6:18 am, under NPB
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Bullpen Sessions / Batting Practice

Wednesday

  • Chihiro Kaneko threw about forty pitches in the bullpen. (Sports Hochi)

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Tuesday's Ni-gun game against the Hanshin Tigers (Buffaloes 5 - Tigers 0): Hayato Terahara started the game and did not allow a run or a hit over two innings of work.  He also topped out at 145km/h. [Sponichi]

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Akinobu Okada does not plan on having Kei Igawa pitch right away and will instead have him continue his workouts until he is ready.

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Chihiro Kaneko was left off the 2012 Opening Day Roster.  Alfredo Figaro and Hayato Terahara are possible candidates to start on opening day.

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Orix Buffaloes: March 23, 2012

by on Mar.23, 2012 @ 11:58 pm, under NPB
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The Buffaloes prayed for a successful season at Sumiyoshi Taisha shrine in Osaka today.

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The Buffaloes announced today that 7th round draft pick Shuhei Kojima was diagnosed with a mandibular alveolar fracture and will require about four weeks of a full recovery.  Kojima will spend the next ten days or so getting rest.

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Akinobu Okada told reporters on Thursday that he was planning to name TH as the new opening day starter (assuming he is capable).  When asked who that was, he playfully said that it was Shohei Tsukahara.  More than likely, it is Hayato Terahara.

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