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[12/10/2014] Yomiuri Giants, Hanshin Tigers, Chunichi Dragons, Yokohama Bay Stars

by on Dec.11, 2014 @ 2:20 am, under NPB
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Yomiuri Giants

  • Shinnosuke Abe is open to catching in emergency situations. Source: Sponichi 12/10/2014, Nikkan Sports 12/10/2014
  • The Giants will try to increase fan attendance to Ni-gun games by scheduling more events next year. Source: Daily Sports 12/10/2014
  • About 220 members of the organization (players, staff, family) left for a championship trip to Hawaii out of Narita Airport on Tuesday. Source: Sanspo 12/10/2014 ... Hisayoshi Chono opted to skip the trip to spend time rehabbing his right knee and elbow. Source: Sponichi 12/10/2014

Hanshin Tigers

  • Atsushi Nomi recorded a winning record during the first-half of a full season just once in his career (8-4 in 2013). He did a lot of running that year and plans to work more of it into his routine in 2015 (particularly through to June). Nomi is not planning to throw the ball until the new year. Source: Sanspo 12/10/2014, Sponichi 12/10/2014
  • Tsuyoshi Nishioka wants to play second or short, but the Tigers could use him in the outfield or at third. Source: Sanspo 12/10/2014
  • The Tigers have given Shintaro Fujinami the green light to buy a car. Players drafted out of high school living in Kofuso (team dorm) generally are not allowed to own a car until after their third year, but officials made an exception for Fujinami because he is already at Ichi-gun and can benefit from having his own transportation. Source: Sanspo 12/10/2014

Chunichi Dragons

  • Ryuya Ogawa will be in the Philippines on the 13th and 14th. He is slated to hold a baseball clinic on the 13th. Source: Sponichi 12/10/2014, Nikkan Sports 12/10/2014
  • Masato Matsui (27) will file marriage papers with a twenty-seven-year-old woman living in Miyazaki on Thursday. Source: Sanspo 12/10/2014

Yokohama Bay Stars

  • Takayuki Kajitani will be moving from a 920 gram bat at 33.5 inches to a 910 gram bat at 34 inches. Source: Sports Hochi 12/10/2014

[12/9/2014] Chunichi Dragons, Yokohama Bay Stars, Yakult Swallows

by on Dec.10, 2014 @ 2:04 am, under NPB
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Chunichi Dragons

  • Katsuki Matayoshi was able to work on a slower slider while playing winter ball in the Dominican Republic this off-season. Source: Nikkan Sports 12/9/2014

Yokohama Bay Stars

  • Kiyoshi Nakahata is thinking about giving Yasutomo Kubo the opening day start next year. Kubo believes the team would be better served if a younger pitcher got the assignment. Source: Sports Hochi 12/9/2014

Yakult Swallows

[12/7/2014] Yomiuri Giants, Hanshin Tigers, Hiroshima Carp, Chunichi Dragons, Yakult Swallows

by on Dec.08, 2014 @ 12:47 am, under NPB
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Yomiuri Giants

Hanshin Tigers

  • Shinya Azuhata (26) is planning to marry a twenty-six-year-old woman living in Aichi. Source: Nikkan Sports 12/7/2014
  • Kazuyuki Kaneda and Akira Iwamoto will be working out with Seung-Hwan Oh in Guam for about ten days in January. Source: Sanspo 12/7/2014, Sponichi 12/7/2014
  • Tsuyoshi Nishioka wants to compete as a middle infielder. Source: Sponichi 12/6/2014 ... Nishioka's divorce from model Naoko Tokuzawa (30) was recently finalized. Source: Sponichi 12/6/2014

Hiroshima Carp

  • Shota Dobayashi will use three different kinds of bats next season. Type 1: The same kind of bat he used this season (910 grams, thirty-four inches). Type 2: Same as Type 1, but lighter, between 880-900 grams. Type 3: Same as Type 1, but with a thicker handle. Source: Sponichi 12/7/2014, Daily Sports 12/7/2014

Chunichi Dragons

  • Katsuki Matayoshi faced Manny Ramirez three times while playing winter ball in the Dominican Republic. Ramirez went 1-for-2 with a walk. Source: Nikkan Sports 12/7/2014
  • The Chubu Sports Writers Club decided to give Daisuke Yamai their baseball MVP award. Source: Sanspo 12/6/2014

Yakult Swallows

  • Yoshihisa Naruse was using a Shota Dobayashi model bat this season. He will continue to use the same model, but will switch over to a Kazuhiro Wada bat handle. The bat will also be about ten grams lighter, between 880 and 890 grams. Source: Sponichi 12/6/2014

[12/6/2014] Alfredo Despaigne, Yulieski Gourriel, Hideki Okajima

by on Dec.07, 2014 @ 12:44 am, under NPB
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The Chiba Lotte Marines could offer Alfredo Despaigne (28) a one-year deal over 300 million yen. Other teams were said to be interested in Despaigne, but Yomiuri will most ikely focus their attention on Yulieski Gurriel and Orix may no longer have the need. Source: Nikkan Sports 12/6/2014 ... Lotte could offer a two-year deal worth 800 million yen. At 400 million yen a year, he would become the highest paid player in franchise history (the current high of 300 million yen was set by Julio Franco in 1995). Source: Sports Hochi 12/6/2014

The Yokohama Bay Stars are close to finalizing a deal with Hideki Okajima (38). An announcement could be made within the next few days. Source: Sports Hochi 12/6/2014

A Bay Stars representative could be heading to Cuba to discuss Yulieski Gourriel (30). Yokohama could offer Gourriel a one-year deal worth 300 million yen. Source: Sanspo 12/6/2014

Masanori Hayashi signed a three-year deal with the Bay Stars. He agreed to a fifteen million yen raise and will make an estimated forty-one million yen next year. Source: Daily Sports 12/6/2014

Tsuyoshi Nishioka (30) finished off a two-year deal and finalized a new one-year deal on Friday. "I got hurt this year and didn't have the kind of season I wanted even after returning. I signed a two-year contract, but only managed to help in one. I want to hear about how Nishioka helped the team by pulling everyone together," said Nishioka. Source: Nikkan Sports 12/6/2014 ... Nishioka also said, "I want to stick to the middle infield, I want focus on second and short. I'm still young. It's difficult to change positions and then go back again later. I went with a one-year deal because I feel strongly about this... My preference for positions is important." Source: Daily Sports 12/6/2014

Ryosuke Hirata (26) was offered forty-seven million yen during contract negotiations on November 22 (twelve million yen raise). He appeared on Tokai TV's Dora HOT Plus on Saturday and said he informed the organization that he was hoping to hit sixty-five million yen in 2015 (difference of eighteen million yen). He is slated to meet with the Dragons again next week. Source: Nikkan Sports 12/6/2014

The Orix Buffaloes will most likely end up spending about 3.5 billion yen on five contracts this off-season: Eiichi Koyano, Hiroyuki Nakajima, Tony Blanco, Bryan Bullington, and Chihiro Kaneko. Source: Sponichi 12/6/2014

Orix senryokugai Shinji Takahashi (36) is slated to join the Shinano Granserows Baseball Club (BC League) as a player/hitting coach. Source: Nikkan Sports 12/6/2014

[12/5/2014] Rumors: Hideki Okajima, Tony Blanco, Bryan Bullington

by on Dec.06, 2014 @ 6:49 am, under NPB
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The Yokohama Bay Stars could know more about where Yulieski Gourriel (30) is going to play next year within the next ten days or so. Source: Sponichi 12/5/2014

The Bay Stars are interested in Hideki Okajima (38). Source: Sponichi 12/5/2014, Nikkan Sports 12/5/2014

The Orix Buffaloes are close to finalizing contracts with Tony Blanco (34) and Bryan Bullington (34). An announcement could be made shortly. Source: Sports Hochi 12/5/2014, Daily Sports 12/5/2014

The Softbank Hawks could be close to finalizing a two-year deal worth an estimated 400 million yen with Rick VandenHurk (29). An announcement could be made some time next week. Source: Sponichi 12/5/2014

It is uncertain when Kenta Maeda (26) will meet with the Hiroshima Carp to discuss his terms for 2015. Maeda has a full schedule and may not have time to meet team officials until after the new year. Source: Sports Hochi 12/5/2014

The Yakult Swallows held a press conference for Keiji Obiki on Friday. He was assigned the uniform number 2. He agreed to a three-year deal worth an estimated 300 million yen. Source: official announcement, Daily Sports 12/5/2014

Yohei Oshima met with Chunichi Dragons official again on Friday and was offered the same deal he received during his first meeting. He turned it down and said he wanted ninety million. During his press conference, he told reporters that while he felt negotiations were more open, he also felt he was not going to get any more than seventy-four million yen (initial offer). A third meeting will most likely take place before the end of the year, but neither side appears willing to budge. Source: Sports Hochi 12/5/2014, Daily Sports 12/5/2014, Sponichi 12/5/2014, Nikkan Sports 12/5/2014 ... Oshima (and Ryosuke Hirata) have the support of the JPBPA. Source: Sponichi 12/4/2014

Kenji Akashi met with Softbank Hawks' officials on Friday to negotiate terms for the 2015 season. He held off on agreeing to a forty-five million yen contract (fifteen million raise) because he wanted more time to think. Source: Nikkan Sports 12/5/2014

Munenori Kawasaki (33) has reportedly decided to spend at least one more year playing in the United States. Source: Sanspo 12/5/2014

Shugo Fujii (37) visited the Yokohama Bay Stars to thank them for their support over the last three years and to let tell them he decided to retire. He is planning to take on a job as a batting practice pitcher for the Yomiuri Giants. Source: Daily Sports 12/5/2014

Yakult senryokugai Takehiko Oshimoto (32) has decided to retire. He attended the first twelve-team tryout on November 9 and received an offer from a team in Taiwan, but none from the NPB. Source: Sports Hochi 12/5/2014

[12/5/2014] Hanshin Tigers, Hiroshima Carp, Chunichi Dragons, Yakult Swallows

by on Dec.06, 2014 @ 6:44 am, under NPB
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Hanshin Tigers

  • The Tigers are thinking about going with a yellow alternate uniform next season as part of their 80th anniversary celebration. Source: Sanspo 12/5/2014
  • Ryota Arai turned down an offer to change his uniform number from thirty-two to twenty-five. Twenty-five was the number his brother Takahiro wore the last seven seasons with the Tigers. Said Arai, "I felt if someone was going to wear it, it might as well be me. I asked people what they thought. I like thirty-two and the number twenty-five reminds me of my brother." Source: Sanspo 12/5/2014
  • Tatsuya Kojima (29) had surgery to clean out his right knee on Tuesday and was discharged from the hospital on Thursday. Source: Daily Sports 12/5/2014

Hiroshima Carp

Chunichi Dragons

  • Katsuki Matayoshi returned to Japan on Friday. He was playing winter ball in the Dominican Republic. In seventeen games, Matayoshi went 0-2 with a 1.69 ERA. Source: Nikkan Sports 12/5/2014, MiLB Player Stats
  • Masahiro Yamamoto ordered a pair of protective glasses during a meeting with Mizuno representatives on Friday. Yamamoto is coming off surgery to treat a detached retina in October. Source: Nikkan Sports 12/5/2014
  • Yohei Oshima used cleats that weighed 305 grams this past season. He was shown lighter models weighing between 270 and 290 grams during a meeting with SSK representatives on Friday. Source: Nikkan Sports 12/5/2014

Yakult Swallows

  • Nagisa Arakaki's uniform number will change from forty-five to sixty-six. Source: official announcement
  • Wladimir Balentien had surgery on his left Achilles on October 1. He is now at the point where he can wear regular footwear while walking around indoors. The Swallows are not expecting him to be ready to report to the first day of spring camp. They will try to set a timetable in January. Source: Daily Sports 12/5/2014

[12/3/2014] Yomiuri Giants, Hanshin Tigers, Chunichi Dragons, Yokohama Bay Stars

by on Dec.04, 2014 @ 12:24 am, under NPB
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Yomiuri Giants

  • Seiji Kobayashi wants to push his weight to eighty kilograms this off-season. He played at seventy-four kilograms this year. Source: Sanspo 12/3/2014
  • Tomoyuki Sugano left Japan out of Haneda Airport for the United States on Tuesday. He will be spending some time training in Arizona. Source: Daily Sports 12/2/2014
  • The Giants are planning to go back to having "Tokyo" across the front chest area of their road uniforms next year. Source: Nikkan Sports 12/2/2014

Hanshin Tigers

Chunichi Dragons

  • The Dragons worked with three advance scouts this season. They plan to add two more next season and assign one Central League team to each. Source: Daily Sports 12/3/2014
  • Naomichi Donoue's uniform number will change from 1 to 63. Donoue's brother wore the number 63 until he was senryokugai'ed this year. Source: Sanspo 12/2/2014 ... Donoue selected the number. The number 1 will most likely go to third round draft pick Shota Tomonaga. Source: Daily Sports 12/2/2014

Yokohama Bay Stars

  • The Bay Stars announced that Shoichi Ino was involved in a minor car accident. The incident took place at around 14:50 on Tuesday in Chiba. Ino was not paying enough attention to a traffic light and crashed into a car in front of his. There were no major injuries. Authorities were contacted and insurance information was exchanged. Source: Daily Sports 12/3/2014, Daily Sports 12/3/2014
  • Takehiro Ishikawa's captaincy will end after three years. Ishikawa told reporters on Monday he would like to see either Yoshitomo Tsutsugo or Takayuki Kajitani to step in after him. Source: Sanspo 12/2/2014
  • Yuki Kuniyoshi (23) filed marriage papers with twenty-three-year-old talento Sachi Kiriyama earlier this year March 14. Source: Sponichi 12/2/2014, Sports Hochi 12/2/2014

[12/1/2014] Yomiuri Giants, Hanshin Tigers, Chunichi Dragons, Yokohama Bay Stars

by on Dec.02, 2014 @ 12:23 am, under NPB
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Yomiuri Giants

  • Yoshinobu Takahashi is hoping to join Haruyasu Nakajima (1949), Sadaharu Oh (1980), and Hiromitsu Ochiai (1994-1996) as the only players in franchise history to make the opening day lineup during or after the season they turned forty. Takahashi will turn forty on April 3 next year. Source: Sponichi 12/1/2014

Hanshin Tigers

  • Shoya Yamamoto, Kazuo Ito, and Takumi Akiyama will be moving out of the team dormitory and into their own places this off-season. Source: Sponichi 12/1/2014
  • Yuta Iwasada will be signing with Dome Corporation, Under Armour's representative in Japan. He will have a chance to train at the same gym Yu Darvish uses during the off-season. Source: Sanspo 12/1/2014
  • The Tigers are planning to focus their attention on infielders and catchers for the next draft. Source: Daily Sports 12/1/2014
  • Former Tigers' head coach Masahiro Kuroda joined Sanspo as a baseball analyst. Source: Sanspo 12/1/2014

Chunichi Dragons

Yokohama Bay Stars

  • Yoshitomo Tsutsugo left Japan on Sunday out of Narita Airport to train in the United States. He will be working out in Los Angeles for about three weeks. Source: Sponichi 12/1/2014
  • Shoichi Ino will have a tonsillectomy on December 10. Source: Nikkan Soprts 12/1/2014

General

  • Carp Joshi (referring to female Carp fans) and Legend (referring to over forty athletes Noriaki Kasai, Isao Aoki, and Masahiro Yamamoto) made U-CANs top ten Buzz Words/Phrases in 2014. Source: official announcement

[11/29/2014] Yomiuri, Hanshin, Hiroshima, Chunichi, Yokohama, Yakult

by on Nov.30, 2014 @ 9:13 am, under NPB
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Yomiuri Giants

  • Yoshinobu Takahashi and former Giant Koji Uehara held a baseball clinic and talk session in Ishinomaki, Miyagi for about 150 youths on Saturday. Source: Sanspo 11/30/2014

Hanshin Tigers

  • Mauro Gomez is planning to play winter ball. The Tigers could ask him to keep an eye out on players he thinks might find success in Japan. Source: Sports Hochi 11/29/2014, Sanspo 11/29/2014
  • Yutaka Wada is thinking about giving Tsuyoshi Nishioka a look in the outfield next year. Source: Daily Sports 11/29/2014, Sponichi 11/29/2014
  • Pitchers struggled at Mazda Stadium this year. The Tigers are planning to have some of the mounds at Okinawa spring camp rebuilt with the same materials used at Mazda Stadium. Source: Sanspo 11/29/2014
  • The Tigers Old Timers organization recognized Tomoyuki Kubota's accomplishments during his active career by presenting him with a special achievement award on Saturday. Source: Sanspo 11/30/2014

Hiroshima Carp

  • The Carp could give Deunte Heath a look in the closer role next year. They could also go with four set-up men. Source: Sponichi 11/29/2014

Chunichi Dragons

  • Daisuke Sobue (27) filed marriage papers with a twenty-seven-year-old woman from Toyohashi, Aichi on August 10. They are not planning to hold a ceremony. Source: Nikkan Sports 11/29/2014
  • Shuhei Takahashi's uniform number will change from nine to three next year. Source: Daily Sports 11/29/2014

Yokohama Bay Stars

Yakult Swallows

  • Yuhei will spend some time training at the Weider Training Lab in Tokyo this winter. Source: Sponichi 11/30/2014