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Takuya Tsuchida signs with the Cleveland Indians

by on Oct.30, 2012 @ 4:19 pm, under MLB
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Eighteen-year-old Takuya Tsuchida from Haguro High School has signed a minor league contract with the Cleveland Indians.  Tsuchida was the captain of the Haguro team and played the outfield.  He is 170cm tall and weighs 70kg.  He throws with his right and hits from both sides of the plate.  He can run the fifty meter in 5.8 seconds.

Tsuchida did submit a letter of intent but was not selected during the draft and later sat down with the Indians.  Cleveland likes that he can hit from both sides of the plate, has speed, and can play any position.  He will head to the US in March and will most likely begin his career at Rookie.

Said Tsuchida, "I am worried, but it is a place where I can test abilities.  I want to take advantage of my speed and become a player that will be noticed by the manager."

Source: Nikkan Sports 10/30/2012, Asahi 10/30/2012, Yomiuri 10/30/2012

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UPDATE @ 10:22pm -

Tsuchida, his father, and his high school manager finalized a deal with Indians' director of Pacific Rim Scouting Dave DeFreitas on Monday.

DeFreitas on Tsuchida: "He is a switch-hitter with speed.  He can be a utility player that plays multiple positions.  He interested us because he has a lot of all-around potential."

Source: Nikkan Sports 10/30/2012

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Sponichi: Cleveland Indians sign Naoki Hashimoto to a minor league deal

by on Jul.02, 2012 @ 1:16 pm, under MLB
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Sponichi is reporting that the Cleveland Indians signed Kobe Suns' (Kansai Independent League) right-handed pitcher Naoki Hashimoto (22) to a minor league deal.

Hashimoto supposedly has a good fastball that hits 150km/h, but has always struggled with his control.

UPDATE 7/3 @ 12:18am - A press conference was held in Sumoto, Hyogo on Monday to announce the signing.  Hashimoto will leave for the US some time before the end of the month and will be at Single-A.  His contract is worth a reported US$250,000.  Source: Nikkan Sports 7/2/2012

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2012 Stats

G IP W L Sv WPCT ERA ShO CG NP S B PA AB H 1B 2B 3B HR R ER SH SF BB IP HBP SO WP BK
18 33 2 1 0 0.667 6.55 0 0 716 380 336 170 130 30 22 6 2 0 29 24 2 1 34 0 3 33 11 0
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Sponichi: Cleveland Indians interested in Shinobu Fukuhara (HAN)

by on Nov.05, 2011 @ 8:10 am, under NPB
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According to Sponichi, the Cleveland Indians are interested in 34-year-old RHP Shinobu Fukuhara.

Fukuhara earned his international FA option in 2010 and has not exercised it.  And while the Indians may only be willing to offer Fukuhara a minor league deal to begin with, that could be enough to get him to exercise the option (he has mentioned wanting to play in the US before and with him turning 35 in December, he's beginning to run out of time).

Career Stats

Year Tm G W L Sv CG ShO BF IP H HR BB HBP SO WP BK R ER ERA WHIP
1999 HAN 54 10 7 9 0 0 303 70.1 70 6 27 1 53 3 0 33 32 4.09 1.38
2000 HAN 36 5 9 3 1 1 500 117.2 109 10 42 3 119 4 0 55 43 3.29 1.28
2001 HAN 39 9 12 1 0 0 569 129.1 120 5 71 4 104 7 1 55 45 3.13 1.48
2002 HAN 25 1 2 0 0 0 128 30.0 33 1 7 3 30 3 0 20 17 5.10 1.33
2003 HAN 5 2 2 0 0 0 96 22.0 20 3 10 0 27 0 0 9 7 2.86 1.36
2004 HAN 29 10 15 0 2 1 779 181.1 190 13 58 4 148 13 0 88 78 3.87 1.37
2005 HAN 28 8 14 0 3 2 721 171.2 172 20 45 6 124 3 1 74 67 3.51 1.26
2006 HAN 24 12 5 0 3 0 636 154.2 143 8 42 6 119 4 0 44 36 2.09 1.20
2007 HAN 19 2 8 0 0 0 329 71.2 101 5 19 3 42 4 0 53 52 6.53 1.67
2008 HAN 8 3 2 0 1 1 145 34.0 38 4 12 0 17 3 0 13 13 3.44 1.47
2009 HAN 14 3 10 0 1 1 328 74.1 77 9 27 3 45 1 1 47 40 4.84 1.40
2010 HAN 19 0 1 0 0 0 104 24.1 25 5 10 0 20 3 0 15 14 5.18 1.44
2011 HAN 55 2 3 0 0 0 204 48.2 41 5 16 1 59 1 0 20 14 2.59 1.17
Totals 355 67 90 13 11 6 4842 1130.0 1139 94 386 34 907 49 3 526 458 3.65 1.35
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Cleveland Indians sign former Yomiuri Giant Toru Murata

by on Dec.18, 2010 @ 1:01 pm, under MLB
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12/22/2010 6:15pm JST

Murata held a press conference in Tokyo today to announce his deal with the Indians.

"I'm happy to be given this opportunity," said Murata.  "If I'm going to do this, I figured I'd step onto the biggest stage, the Majors"

12/18/2010 1:01pm JST

The Cleveland Indians have apparently signed 25-year-old RHP Toru Murata to a minor league deal. Murata stands at 182cm and weighs 80kg. He was drafted out of college (Osaka University of Health and Sport Sciences) by the Yomiuri Giants in the 2007 draft.

Murata throws a slider, cutter, curve, fork, and change; his fastball tops out at around 148km/h. In his three years with the Giants, Murata did not see any playing time at Ichi-gun.  He was released by the Giants on 12/2.

A press conference announcing the deal is planned on the 22nd.

Ni-gun Stats

YR G W L SV CG SHO PCT BF IP H HR BB IBB HB SO WP BK R ER ERA
2008 9 0 2 0 0 0 .000 61 12.2 15 1 6 0 1 9 0 0 13 11 7.82
2009 26 2 4 0 0 0 .333 248 54.1 66 6 26 0 2 33 2 0 35 24 3.98
2010 6 0 4 0 1 0 .000 131 29.2 34 0 10 0 1 22 0 0 17 14 4.25


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The Indians make it official: Takafumi Nakamura signs

by on Nov.25, 2009 @ 7:01 am, under Other
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The Cleveland Indians officially signed 21-year-old Chuo University graduate, Takafumi Nakamura, to a minor league deal.  At 194cm and 90kg, Nakamura is about as big as they come in Japan.  He can throw a curve, slider, shuto, and fork to go along with a fastball that tops out at 149km/h.

Nakamura will fly to the US sometime in late February and begin his career in the Rookie Leagues.

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Cleveland Indians sign Takafumi Nakamura

by on Nov.01, 2009 @ 11:52 am, under Other
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As mentioned earlier, the Cleveland Indians have an interest in right-handed pitcher Takafumi Nakamura.  Since Nakamura went unselected during the draft on Thursday, the two sides have begun discussing a contract and it now seems as though they might be ready to announce a minor league deal.

The Indians apparently like his size (he's 194cm tall and weighs in at 90kg) and feel that he's a risk worth taking.

According to the article, the Indians plan to announce the signing sometime in the middle of November and will start Nakamura at single A ball.

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Bobby a finalist for the Cleveland Indians manager’s job

by on Oct.20, 2009 @ 3:18 am, under Other
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Could be something, could be nothing, but it appears as though Bobby Valentine is a finalist for the manager's position with the Cleveland Indians.  Via The Plain Dealer (cleveland.com):

CLEVELAND, Ohio -- Bobby Valentine, whose New York Mets reached the World Series in 2000, is one of the finalists for the vacant Indians manager's job.

Valentine, 59, it has been learned, will come to Cleveland this week for a second interview. He is expected to be one of "three to five" finalists to interview with GM Mark Shapiro and assistant GM Chris Antonetti.

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Cleveland Indians have their eyes on Takafumi Nakamura

by on Oct.16, 2009 @ 9:59 am, under College
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The Cleveland Indians have expressed interest in Chuo University righty Takafumi Nakamura.

Nakamura is 21 years old, is 194cm tall and weighs in at 90kg.  He tops out at 149km/h and can throw a fastball, curve, slider, shuto, and fork.

The Indians have already contacted Chuo University manager, Yoshimasa Takahashi, to inform them of their interest.

"If he doesn't get picked in the draft then he can always go to the States," said Takahashi.