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Atsuya Furuta argues for a sports ministry / agency

by on Mar.11, 2010 @ 3:07 pm, under Other
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Atsuya Furuta, former rugby player Seiji Hirao, and track and field athlete Nobuhara Asahara appeared in front of a government panel on Wednesday to discuss the need for a sports ministry / agency.

Furuta and Hirao feel that a ministry would help unify sports in Japan and raise the general level of competition.  Asahara added that it could also help provide a network of support to various groups, including retired athletes that are trying to start their "second" careers.

If I'm not mistaken, some of this also has to do with Japan's performance during international competitions like the Olympics.

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Yuki Saito will be on TV Asahi at 7pm tonight

by on Nov.08, 2009 @ 6:47 pm, under Other
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If you're in Japan and have access to a TV that had reception to TV Asahi, you might want to tune in at 7pm.

TV Asahi is broadcasting a sports program and they're going to have Yuki Saito and Atsuya Furata as guests.

I'll try to provide a summary of the show after wards for those that don't have access to the show.

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The Eagles have their eye on Atsuya Furuta for the future?!

by on Oct.15, 2009 @ 1:00 am, under NPB
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ZakZak has an extended interview with Katsuya Nomura where he mentions that the Eagles probably have their sights set on Atsuya Furuta for the future.

We here that Brown will likely become the next manager.

So does that mean I'm worse than Brown!?  What has that guy accomplished?  [The front office] obviously doesn't think very highly of me.

Brown managed the Carp to B class for 4 years.

I guess they really don't care about ability for the next manager.  In the end, doesn't this team want Furuta?  But I hear Furuta didn't want to take on the team after me.  Brown's just a gap-filler.

Nomura also went on to say that he thinks the team will end up at the bottom of the standings next season:

This team is missing a lot of things.  You should get too high on this roster and think that they'll be able make second again.  Make no mistake, this team will be in last place next season.  We were really lucky with a number of things this year.  Part of that has to do with last year's Nippon Series champ Seibu Lions falling apart.  That really helped us out a lot.  And the Chiba Lotte Marines were a mess as well.  Softbank had trouble with injuries.  And it's not like Orix is really THAT weak.  We just happened to make second place because everything lined up right.  We were lucky this year.  This team is still growing.  The team is still in the process of developing.

If what Nomura said is true, then I'm pretty excited about the Eagles' future.  I'm a HUGE Furuta fan and I think he deserves another real shot at managing.  And even though he's Nomura's disciple, he's nothing like him.

As for his comments on the team...  Unfortunately, he's probably right.  A lot of things did go well for the Eagles this season.  And you can expect Lions, Hawks, and Buffaloes to have much better seasons next year.  And that means the Eagles might be back at the bottom of the standings next year.

NPB: Atsuya Furuta – future manger of the Eagles?!

by on Feb.10, 2009 @ 7:29 am, under NPB
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Takahiro Arai is making a move to third. Tigers manager Akinobu Mayumi announced that he intends to play Arai at third and Kentaro Sekimoto at first. Sekimoto could also make a move to second if things don't work out at first.

What's strange here is that Arai is coming off a pretty good defensive year at first (he even won a Golden Glove). It seems like it would make more sense to keep him at third and try Sekimoto over at third (he played 93 games over there last season).

...Hanshin Tigers pitching coach Takashi Yamaguchi likes the 15-second rule and thinks that his pitchers won't have any problems. "Watching the bullpen sessions, I'm not really expecting any major problems with our pitchers. ... We have to think positively about this new rule. Last season, [Minoru] Iwata sped up his tempo and ended up doing better for us."

Yamaguchi seems to think that giving pitchers too much time on the mound might actually end up causing more problems because it gives them time to think.

...Atsuya Furuta will be dropping by the Rakuten Eagles' training grounds on Friday this week. And with his arrival comes rumors of his possible future as manager of the Eagles.

His actual purpose for visiting Eagles' camp is to interview Hisashi Iwakuma and Masahiro Tanaka in preparation for his TV analyst job during the WBC.

Said Katsuya Nomura in response to Furuta visiting, "What's he doing coming here? Is he actually going to show his face to me? ... I wonder who the next Rakuten manager will be. I've heard Furuta is trying to sell himself [to the Eagles]. I also heard he approached the Softbank Hawks, but the owner (Masayoshi Son) said he was planning to hire Koji Akiyama and didn't meet with him."

Incidentally, Rakuten brass are also set to make the rounds on Friday as well. Coincidence? Perhaps...

...Ryuhei Matsuyama (Hiroshima Carp) injured his left thigh during base running practice. A visit to the hospital revealed a slight tear in the muscle. He'll be out of action for at least 4 weeks.

...Sho Nakata (Ham Fighters) hit a home run in his first practice game at bat yestersday. He drilled the ball 140m (459ft).

"I've been doing well in BP lately and I think my form is pretty good. I even hit a home run on my birthday. I definitely have somethig here," said Nakata.

A scout for the Eagles said, "Looks like he's toned up a bit. And he's hitting the mistake pitches pretty hard. If he hits, I think his defense will fall into place."

...Training camp photos from February 10th.

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Atsuya Furuta: Softbank Hawks manager? WBC?

by on Oct.03, 2008 @ 1:00 am, under WBC
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UPDATE: I didn't see the article about Koji Akiyama more or less getting the manager's position until after posting this article. The other portions of the article are still pertinent though.

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In a recent radio program, Atsuya Furata (古田 敦也) spoke about the chances of becoming a manager again, this time, perhaps for the Softbank Hawks.

"It's been a year since I took off the uniform. There's is still plenty I need to learn and my schedule is quite full. If there was a request for me to manage, I'm not really sure if I'm at a position to accept."

Koji Akiyama, Chief Coach for the Hawks right now, is another name that has been mentioned as a possible candidate to manage the Hawks next year.

Furuta also said, "Watching the news, I kept wondering if I would be asked to manage, but no such proposals have come."

When asked about the possibitity of managing at the World Baseball Classic: "This is one question I know I won't have to worry about because it won't ever come to that. So it isn't even a question of whether I want to or not. The fact is, the people who have the power to decide won't let it get to that point."

If you'll remember, Furuta was the man that helped lead the player's strike back in 2004, so he's not all that popular amongst the people in power. Tsuneo Watanabe, owner of the Giants at the time, was also quite displeased with Furuta. And since Watanabe basically IS the Yomiuri Shimbun, most don't expect Furuta to even be considered, as the first round of the WBC will be hosted by the newspaper.

"It's true that international games are quite different from national games. Having experience could be beneficial for these tournaments. If they asked me for help, I'd be more than happy to provide it." Furuta was on the team that won the Bronze at the 1988 Seoul Olympics.

Sources:
鷹監督、WBC監督、衆院選出馬Â…古田“固辞”3連発 (Yukan Fuji)

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Player-Manager Atsuya Furuta retires

by on Sep.19, 2007 @ 5:22 am, under NPB
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Atsuya Furuta held a press conference today to announce his retirement from baseball at the age of 42. He was having some problems with his shoulder this year and was limited to just 3 games as a player (he only played in 33 games last year and 96 games the year before due to various injuries). Things weren't much better for him as manager as the Tokyo Yakult Swallows, currently 52-74 with 18 games remaining. Only the Hiroshima Toyo Carp have more losses with 75. His record last season, his first as a manager, was slightly better at 70-73-3.

Furuta was probably my favorite player in the NPB. He always played with a lot of energy and passion. He also played a key role during the negotiations that took place during the strike in 2004. Furuta will be missed.

Awards and Accomplishments

  • MVP (1993, 1997)
  • Batting Title (1991)
  • Best Nine Award (1991 - 1993, 1995, 1997, 1999 - 2001, 2004)
  • Golden Glove Award (1990 - 1993, 1995, 1997, 1999 - 2001, 2004)
  • Championship Series MVP (1997, 2001)
  • All Star (1990 - 2006)
  • 1988 Seoul Olympics silver medalist

Carreer Stats (18 years)

G PA AB R H 2B 3B HR TB RBI SB CS SH SF BB HBP K DP AVG
2001 8103 7129 1001 2091 367 19 217 3147 1009 70 31 55 60 748 111 951 223 .293

Managerial Wins

Wins Losses Ties
1222 147 3 ties
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