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[10/19/2014] Climax Series: Hanshin Tigers, Softbank Hawks, Nippon Ham Fighters

by on Oct.20, 2014 @ 6:27 am, under NPB
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Hanshin Tigers

  • Mauro Gomez set a new Central League record with eight RBI in one Climax Series stage (Final Stage). The previous record of six was set by Michihiro Ogasawara during the Second Stage of the 2008 Climax Series and Masahiko Morino during the Second Stage of the 2009 Climax Series. The NPB record of ten was set by Terrmel Sledge during the Second Stage of the 2009 Climax Series. Source: Sponichi 10/19/2014
  • Tsuyoshi Nishioka recorded the fifth Climax Series modasho of his career on Saturday and set a new Playoff/Climax Series record. The previous record of four was held by Kensuke Tanaka, Michihiro Ogasawara, and Kazuhiro Wada. Source: Nikkan Sports 10/19/2014

Softbank Hawks

  • Nobuhiro Matsuda collected hits in six consecutive trips to the plate (from his last at bat in Game 3 through all four of his at bats in Game 4 and his first at bat in Game 5) and set a new Playoff record. The previous record of five was set by Taketoshi Goto (Second Stage of the 2008 Climax Series, between Games 4 and 5, includes a walk) and Yohei Oshima (First Stage of the 2012 Climax Series, between Games 2 and 3). Source: Sports Hochi 10/19/2014, Jiji Press 10/19/2014, Nikkan Sports 10/19/2014, Sanspo 10/19/2014
  • Yuki Yanagita hit a lead-off home run on Saturday and became the eighth player to hit a lead-off home run in a Playoff/Climax Series game. Source: Sponichi 10/19/2014
  • Kenichi Nakata picked up his fifth career Climax Series victory on Saturday and joined Yu Darvish and Kazuki Yoshimi as the only pitchers to record five Playoff/Climax Series victories. He also joined Kiyoshi Toyoda (Seibu, Yomiuri), Dennis Houlton (Softbank, Yomiuri), Toshiya Sugiuchi (Softbank, Yomiuri), and Takahiro Mahara (Softbank, Orix) as the only players to record the victories with two different teams. Source: Nikkan Sports 10/19/2014
  • The Hawks have prepared 3,000 beers and eight barrels of sake in case they win the Final Stage. Source: Sports Hochi 10/19/2014

Nippon Ham Fighters

Pacific League

  • The Nippon Ham Fighters and Softbank Hawks combined for twenty-four strikeouts through the first nine innings of Sunday's game and set a new Pacific League postseason record. The Central League postseason record of twenty-five was set in 2007 during the Second Stage between Chunichi and Yomiuri. The thirty-two strikeouts over the entire eleven-inning game on Sunday set a new postseason record (includes extra-inning games). Source: Sports Hochi 10/19/2014

[10/19/2014] Rumors: Jose Lopez, Chris Seddon (Yomiuri), Daisuke Yamai (Chunichi)

by on Oct.20, 2014 @ 6:23 am, under NPB
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Yomiuri Giants

  • Jose Lopez and Scott Mathieson left Japan on the 19th. Lopez is a question mark for next season. He is interested in returning. Mathieson will be in the second year of a two-year deal in 2015. Source: Sponichi 10/19/2014
  • Leslie Anderson might require left elbow surgery during the winter. There is a good chance the Giants will ask him back. Frederich Cepeda will most likely return. The Giants are expected to part ways with Chris Seddon. Source: Sponichi 10/19/2014
  • Yoshiyuki Kamei and Kentaro Nishimura both earned domestic FA options this year. Source: Sponichi 10/19/2014
  • The Giants are planning to look into Chihiro Kaneko. Source: Daily Sports 10/19/2014 ... The Giants will be keeping an eye on Yulieski Gourriel and Alfredo Despaigne. Source: Sponichi 10/19/2014 ... The Giants are not planning to offer Cepeda a contract for 2015 and are looking into Hiroyuki Nakajima. Source: Sanspo 10/19/2014

Hanshin Tigers

  • Ni-gun manager Katsuo Hirata could be reassigned to Ichi-gun head coach. Ni-gun chief/hitting coach Hideo Furuya could take over as Ni-gun manager. Ichi-gun general coach Haruki Yoshitake could join the front office. Source: Sanspo 10/19/2014

Hiroshima Carp

  • Eishin Soyogi and Shogo Kimura earned their domestic FA options this year. They are expected to meet team officials on the 20th to discuss their options. Source: Sponichi 10/19/2014
  • Kenta Maeda has not given up on his dream to play in the Majors and would like to head overseas sooner rather than later. This winter may not be in the cards. Source: Sponichi 10/19/2014

Chunichi Dragons

  • Daisuke Yamai on his FA option: "There was a time when I wanted to know what kind of interest other teams had in me, but not anymore. More than that, I learned that I have a really strong bond with this team (Chunichi)." Source: Sports Hochi 10/19/2014

Yokohama Bay Stars

  • Kiyoshi Nakahata would like to see Yulieski Gourriel return to the Bay Stars next season. Nakahata plans to work him harder if he does. "I treated him like a guest this year, things will be different next year. He doesn't really seem interested in defense. He doesn't like practicing, but he will have to if he does not want to become a distraction. I'll sit down and talk to him about it [if he comes back]." Source: Sponichi 10/19/2014

Yakult Swallows

  • The Swallows would like Hiroyasu Tanaka and Ryoji Aikawa to return in 2015. They are expected to begin negotiations with the two players soon. Source: Daily Sports 10/19/2014

Rakuten Eagles

Orix Buffaloes

  • The Buffaloes are putting together a list of foreign player candidates in case negotiations with Wily Mo Pena fall through. Kila Ka'aihue is one of the candidates on the list. There may be other players with NPB experience on the list. Source: Sponichi 10/19/2014

[10/18/2014] Climax Series: Hanshin Tigers, Softbank Hawks, Nippon Ham Fighters

by on Oct.19, 2014 @ 3:26 am, under NPB
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Hanshin Tigers

  • Seung-Hwan Oh joined Masahide Kobayashi (2005, Second Stage, saves in Games 1, 2, 5) and Hitoki Iwase (2007, Second Stage, saves in Games 1-3) as the only players to record three save in one Climax Series stage; also joined Iwase as the only players to record saves in three consecutive games in one Climax Series stage. Source: Sponichi 10/18/2014 ... Oh tied Iwase's 2007 Central League record for most saves during a Climax Series with four. The NPB record of five was set by Kobayashi in 2005. Source: Nikkan Sports 10/18/2014

Softbank Hawks

  • Yuichi Honda (left ring finger) resumed fielding practice on Friday. Honda suffered a fracture in his left ring finger on August 2. He was given the green light to move forward with his workouts during an exam at a hospital on the 16th. Assuming no setbacks, he could begin playing in the Phoenix League on the 21st. Source: Nikkan Sports 10/18/2014

Nippon Ham Fighters

  • Shohei Otani threw about forty pitches in the bullpen in preparation for his start on Sunday. Source: Daily Sports 10/18/2014
  • Dai-Kang Yoh became the eleventh player to hit two home runs in a Playoff/Climax Series game on Friday. Yoh also became the eighth player to hit the home runs in consecutive trips to the plate; and the fifth to do it in back-to-back innings. Source: Nikkan Sports 10/18/2014

[10/18/2014] Hanshin Tigers advance to Nippon Series for first time since 2005

by on Oct.18, 2014 @ 11:43 pm, under NPB
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The Hanshin Tigers completed an impressive four-game sweep of the Yomiuri Giants tonight with a 8-4 victory.

Seung-Hwan Oh was awarded the Climax Series MVP. He pitched in all six of Hanshin's Climax Series games.

Date Opponent   IP NP BF AB H HR SO BB HBP R ER
10/11 Hiroshima S 1.0 12 3 3 0 0 3 0 0 0 0
10/12 Hiroshima H 3.0 36 10 10 2 0 2 0 0 0 0
10/15 Yomiuri S 1.0 19 4 3 0 0 1 0 1 0 0
10/16 Yomiuri S 1.0 15 4 4 1 0 1 0 0 0 0
10/17 Yomiuri S 1.1 20 4 4 0 0 2 0 0 0 0
10/18 Yomiuri   1.0 24 6 6 3 2 1 0 0 2 2

In Osaka, a number of fans were seen jumping into the Dotonbori River to celebrate the team's victory. [UPDATE 10/19 @ 12:41am] According to Nikkan Sports, roughly 3,000 fans gathered near Ebisu bridge and about fifty jumped into the river.

Stores in the Hanshin group are not planning to hold celebration sales until after the Nippon Series. The Tigers have also decided not to hold any major celebrations until after the Nippon Series as well.

Source: Sponichi 10/18/2014, Sponichi 10/18/2014, Daily Sports 10/18/2014

CS: Hanshin Tigers 8 – Yomiuri Giants 4 (October 18, 2014)

by on Oct.18, 2014 @ 4:01 am, under Game Summaries, NPB, Postseason
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Hanshin Tigers vs Yomiuri Giants @ Tokyo Dome - 18:00
Starters: Nomi, Atsushi (HAN) 9-13, 3.99 - Koyama, Yuki (YOM) 6-2, 2.41

  1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Hanshin 4 2 0 0 0 0 2 0 0 8 11 0
Yomiuri 0 1 1 0 0 0 0 0 2 4 13 0

Attendance: 46311 | Time: 3h42m | Hanshin leads series, 4-0-0

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[10/17/2014] Climax Series: Yomiuri Giants, Hanshin Tigers, Softbank Hawks, Nippon Ham Fighters

by on Oct.18, 2014 @ 2:46 am, under NPB
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Yomiuri Giants

  • Hisayoshi Chono's right knee is still not 100 percent. Source: Sponichi 10/17/2014
  • Tomoyuki Sugano (right elbow) played catch at a distance of about thirty meters on Friday. He told reporters it was the best he felt since he started throwing. Source: Sponichi 10/17/2014
  • Yoshinobu Takahashi (right middle finger) did some long distance throwing at sixty to seventy meters on Friday, a day after he played catch at roughly fifty meters. He also took live batting practice: fifty one-hop baseballs and fifty slow and easy pitches. Source: Sponichi 10/17/2014
  • Hirokazu Sawamura was ejected for throwing a dangerous pitch during Thursday's Final Stage game against Hanshin. He became the third person to get ejected from a Playoff/Climax Series game. The other two: Bunjiro Sakamoto, coach, 1979 Playoffs, Game 3, getting rough with an umpire; and Micheal Nakamura, 2009 Climax Series Second Stage, Game 1, dangerous pitch. The ejection for throwing a dangerous pitch was a first for Sawamura during his Ichi-gun career. Source: Sponichi 10/17/2014

Hanshin Tigers

Softbank Hawks

Nippon Ham Fighters

[10/17/2014] Rumors: Yoshihisa Naruse (Lotte), Chichiro Kaneko (Orix), Daisuke Yamai (Chunichi)

by on Oct.18, 2014 @ 2:39 am, under NPB
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Hanshin Tigers

  • The Tigers may have shifted their attention to Chihiro Kaneko and Naoki Miyanishi, now that there is a chance Daisuke Yamai might not become available. Source: Daily Sports 10/17/2014

Chunichi Dragons

  • Daisuke Yamai might end up remaining with the Dragons. He feels strongly about staying and was offered a contract that was close to what he was hoping for. Source: Daily Sports 10/17/2014

Chiba Lotte Marines

  • Yoshihisa Naruse met with management for about an hour on the 15th. It was their first meeting. He may have been offered a one-year deal with a drop in salary. Said Naruse, "Honestly, there was a bit of a gap in between our interests. It seems they didn't really take my eleven years with the team into serious consideration... I was surprised and it made me sad." The two side are scheduled to meet again sometime on or after the 20th. Source: Nikkan Sports 10/17/2014, Sports Hochi 10/17/2014, Sponichi 10/17/2014

Orix Buffaloes

  • The Buffaloes are planning to begin contract negotiations for potential free agents Chihiro Kaneko, Yoshihisa Hirano, Takahiro Mahara, and Tomotaka Sakaguchi within the next few days. Source: Daily Sports 10/17/2014

CS: Hanshin Tigers 4 – Yomiuri Giants 2 (October 17, 2014)

by on Oct.17, 2014 @ 4:00 am, under Game Summaries, NPB, Postseason
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Hanshin Tigers vs Yomiuri Giants @ Tokyo Dome - 18:00
Starters: Messenger, Randy (HAN) 13-10, 3.20 - Sugiuchi, Toshiya (YOM) 10-6, 3.16

  1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Hanshin 0 0 0 0 0 2 2 0 0 4 11 0
Yomiuri 1 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 6 0

Attendance: 46025 | Time: 3h44m | Hanshin leads series, 3-0-0

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[10/16/2014] Climax Series: Yomiuri Giants, Hanshin Tigers

by on Oct.17, 2014 @ 2:55 am, under NPB
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Yomiuri Giants

  • Tetsuya Utsumi dropped his start on Wednesday and is now 1-4 lifetime in Climax Series games. Only Kazumi Saito and Toshiya Sugiuchi have more Playoff/Climax Series losses with five. The four losses put Utsumi in a tie with Wei-Ying Chen. Utsumi is 5-1 in Nippon Series games. Source: Nikkan Sports 10/16/2014 ... Utsumi became the third pitcher in franchise history to give up three or more runs in the 1st inning of a Climax Series game. The other two: Dicky Gonzalez, 2009, Second Stage, Game 1, five runs; and Shun Tono, 2010, Final Stage, Game 1, four runs. Source: Sponichi 10/16/2014
  • There is a chance Tomoyuki Sugano (right elbow) will be able to make it back to the active roster in time for the Nippon Series. He started playing catch with a baseball on Wednesday. He threw the last ten baseballs at a distance of roughly twenty meters. He told reporters he felt good, that he threw only fastballs, and at about fifty percent strength. Source: Nikkan Sports 10/16/2014 ... Sugano threw the ball fifty-eight times during his game of catch on Wednesday. Source: Daily Sports 10/16/2014 ... Sugano played catch again on Thursday. He expanded the distance to about fifty meters. Source: Sponichi 10/16/2014
  • Yoshinobu Takahashi started taking batting practice against batting practice pitchers throwing easy pitches. He swung at about forty pitches thrown on one hop to the plate, then about forty pitches thrown by a pitcher on one knee. His goal is to be ready for the Nippon Series. Source: Sponichi 10/16/2014

Hanshin Tigers

  • At twenty years and six month, Shintaro Fujinami became the fifth youngest pitcher to record a Playoff/Climax Series win. Kimiyasu Kudo holds the record at nineteen years and five months, set in 1982. Fujinami set the new Central League record, breaking Katsuki Akagawa's mark of twenty-one years and three months, set in 2011. Fujinami is the youngest pitcher in franchise history to record a postseason victory. The previous franchise record of twenty-five years and ten months was set by Minoru Murayama (1962 Nippon Series, Game 1). Source: Nikkan Sports 10/16/2014, Sponichi 10/16/2014
  • Mauro Gomez became the first hitter in franchise history to hit a home run as a clean-up hitter during a Playoff/Climax Series game. Source: Nikkan Sports 10/16/2014

CS: Hanshin Tigers 5 – Yomiuri Giants 2 (October 16, 2014)

by on Oct.16, 2014 @ 4:00 am, under Game Summaries, NPB, Postseason
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Hanshin Tigers vs Yomiuri Giants @ Tokyo Dome - 18:00
Starters: Messenger, Randy (HAN) 13-10, 3.20 - Sawamura, Hirokazu (YOM) 5-3, 3.72

  1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Hanshin 0 0 2 0 3 0 0 0 0 5 10 2
Yomiuri 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 0 0 2 7 0

Attendance: 44728 | Time: 3h19m | Hanshin leads series, 2-0-0

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