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[9/8/2013] Yakult Swallows: Atsushi Fujimoto to retire at the end of the year

by on Sep.08, 2013 @ 4:56 pm, under NPB
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The media learned on Saturday that thirty-five-year-old infield Atsushi Fujimoto is planning to retire at the end of the year.

Fujimoto once considered giving up baseball before turning pro because of back problems while playing college ball, but could not turn away from the game he loved.  His back problems resurfaced after he signed with the Yakult Swallows.  He went under the knife in 2010, but the procedure did fix all his problems.  This year, he has been getting weekly shots to help him deal with the pain.

Earlier this month, Fuijimoto contacted the organization to tell them he wanted to retire because he had nothing left in him.

An official announcement is expected within the next couple days.

Source: Nikkan Sports 9/8/2013, Sponichi 9/8/2013, Daily Sports 9/8/2013

UPDATE 9/9 @ 11:00pm -

Fujimoto held a press conference at the Yakult Swallows' team offices earlier today to formally announce his plans to retire at the end of the season.  More information can be found at the official team site.

Source: official announcement

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Yakult: Atsushi Fujimoto to undergo back surgery

by on Oct.04, 2010 @ 11:00 pm, under NPB
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The Yakult Swallows announced earlier today that Atsushi Fujimoto will be undergoing back surgery at a hospital in Tokyo on the 9th.  Fujimoto felt some pain during a game he played in on the very first day he returned to the active roster on the 8/27 and was promptly removed from the active roster the following day.

Fujimoto signed a 2-year deal with the Swallows prior to the season with the hopes that he could be become the team's starting shortstop.  Instead, he played in only 65 games and went 43-for-187 (.230) at the plate.

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Atsushi Fujimoto gets a 2-year deal with the Yakult Swallows

by on Nov.24, 2009 @ 5:14 pm, under NPB
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No big surprise here.

The Swallows announced that they have agreed to terms with Atsushi Fujimoto and will be making an official announcement at some point in the near future.

No other details are known at this time.

Career Stats

Year Team G PA AB R H 2B 3B HR TB RBI SB CS SH SF BB HBP SO GIDP AVG SLG OBP OPS
2001 Hanshin 75 202 186 21 50 11 1 1 66 17 2 2 2 0 13 1 36 0 .269 .355 .320 .675
2002 Hanshin 63 162 139 8 29 4 0 1 36 8 3 1 15 0 8 0 23 0 .209 .259 .252 .511
2003 Hanshin 127 451 402 51 121 16 7 0 151 36 9 4 17 4 26 2 42 9 .301 .376 .343 .722
2004 Hanshin 111 419 385 45 99 12 3 5 132 33 5 1 6 0 27 1 58 9 .257 .343 .308 .650
2005 Hanshin 119 400 357 36 89 14 2 1 110 36 3 1 7 2 33 1 40 7 .249 .308 .313 .623
2006 Hanshin 138 443 393 35 93 12 1 3 116 30 3 1 19 3 27 1 56 13 .237 .295 .285 .583
2007 Hanshin 105 164 148 10 36 2 2 0 42 13 0 0 3 0 12 1 23 3 .243 .284 .304 .588
2008 Hanshin 58 89 76 12 19 1 1 0 22 7 1 0 4 2 6 1 14 3 .250 .289 .306 .603
2009 Hanshin 47 70 64 6 14 1 0 0 15 1 0 2 3 0 3 0 4 4 .219 .234 .254 .488
Totals 843 2400 2150 224 550 73 17 11 690 181 26 12 76 11 155 8 296 48 .256 .321 .307 .629

=== UPDATE 11/26/2009 12:57pm JST

According to Sanspo, the two sides agreed to a 2-year deal worth 100M yen and the uniform number 10.   A press conference is supposedly set to take place on the 30th.

=== UPDATE 11/30/2009  8:09pm JST

The Swallows held a press conference on Monday to officially announce Fujimoto.

As mentioned before, he agreed to a 2-year deal worth 100M yen and will be wearing the number 10.

=== UPDATE 12/1/2009 10:40am JST

Fujimoto's salary for the 2010 season will be 36M yen.

=== UPDATE 2:10pm JST

Q&A via Sanspo:

On signing an official contract...

I'm really happy.  I'm looking at this as a new challenge for myself.  I want to apply everything I've learned up to now.

There are some expectations on you to help lead the club...

Yakult has a lot of young players, so communication will be important.  I'll tell them everything I know to help lead the infielders.

You might have a shot at working with 2004 Olympic team mate, Miyamoto...

I really look up to Miaymoto.  I'm honored to have a chance to play alongside him.

Your goals for next season...

As long as I'm playing, my goal is to win the league title and become Nippon Series champs.  I'm going to really work on my lower half this off-season so that I'll be able to continue playing for at least another 3-4 years.

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Swallows offered Fujimoto a 2-year deal worth 100M yen

by on Nov.20, 2009 @ 6:59 am, under NPB
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The Yakult Swallows will be meeting with Atsushi Fujimoto later today in Osaka.  The club is said to be preparing a multi-year deal for Fujimoto and the number 10.

The Swallows' chief scout immediately reached out to Fujimoto on Thursday, the first day free agents can speak to clubs other than their own, to set up their meeting for today.

=== UPDATE 7:48am JST

Sponichi is reporting that the Swallows could offer Fujimoto a 2-year deal worth a total 100M yen.

Club director Kesanori Kurashima and scouts Susumu Watanabe and Akimitsu Ito will likely be present at the meeting.

=== UPDATE 9:35pm JST

The Swallows did indeed offer Fujimoto a 2-year deal with 100M yen.

"They said that they wanted me to help lead their infielders.  That made me happy," said Fujimoto.

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Atsushi Fujimoto opts for freen agency; Swallows a possibility?

by on Nov.16, 2009 @ 5:30 pm, under NPB
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Atsushi Fujimoto officially declared that he will be exercising his FA option.

"I did feel as if the Tigers really wanted me to stay, but I wanted to stay true to myself and test the FA waters.  I am grateful to the Tigers for helping me become the play I am.  I also want to thank the fans that helped support me these past 9 years with their warm cheers.

"I want this to be a new start for me, I want to start from scratch.  I won't have the Hanshin Tigers name behind me any more, so I want to move forward a Atsushi Fujimoto, the player," said Fujimoto at his press conference today.

While Fujimoto doesn't swing a big bat, he can provide some stability with his glove.

The Swallows have expressed interest in Fujimoto.

Year Team G PA AB R H 2B 3B HR TB RBI SB CS SH SF BB HBP SO GIDP AVG SLG OBP OPS
2001 Hanshin 75 202 186 21 50 11 1 1 66 17 2 2 2 0 13 1 36 0 .269 .355 .320 .675
2002 Hanshin 63 162 139 8 29 4 0 1 36 8 3 1 15 0 8 0 23 0 .209 .259 .252 .511
2003 Hanshin 127 451 402 51 121 16 7 0 151 36 9 4 17 4 26 2 42 9 .301 .376 .343 .722
2004 Hanshin 111 419 385 45 99 12 3 5 132 33 5 1 6 0 27 1 58 9 .257 .343 .308 .650
2005 Hanshin 119 400 357 36 89 14 2 1 110 36 3 1 7 2 33 1 40 7 .249 .308 .313 .623
2006 Hanshin 138 443 393 35 93 12 1 3 116 30 3 1 19 3 27 1 56 13 .237 .295 .285 .583
2007 Hanshin 105 164 148 10 36 2 2 0 42 13 0 0 3 0 12 1 23 3 .243 .284 .304 .588
2008 Hanshin 58 89 76 12 19 1 1 0 22 7 1 0 4 2 6 1 14 3 .250 .289 .306 .603
2009 Hanshin 47 70 64 6 14 1 0 0 15 1 0 2 3 0 3 0 4 4 .219 .234 .254 .488
Totals 843 2400 2150 224 550 73 17 11 690 181 26 12 76 11 155 8 296 48 .256 .321 .307 .629
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