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[10/25/2014] Nippon Series: Hanshin Tigers, Softbank Hawks

by on Oct.26, 2014 @ 3:46 am, under NPB
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General News

Hanshin Tigers

  • Takahiro Arai was not available to play on Saturday because there was something wrong with him. Keisuke Kano took his spot on the bench. Source: Sports Hochi 10/25/2014 ... According to Daily Sports, Arai started feeling discomfort in his lower back during field practice. Source: Daily Sports 10/25/2014
  • Osaka Police are worried about things getting out of hand depending on the outcome of the Nippon Series and could put about 1,500 officers on guard to keep the peace. Source: Sponichi 10/25/2014
  • Miki House is planning to award up to five million yen in prize money if the Tigers win a Nippon Series. One million would go to Yutaka Wada. The top two players from the Climax Series and the Nippon Series would get one million yen each. And the Miki House Sanspo MVP would get an extra one million yen on top of the usual one million yen. Source: Sanspo 10/25/2014
  • Senryokugai Yuji Yoshimi is planning to retire. Source: Sanspo 10/25/2014

Softbank Hawks

  • Jason Standridge is the first foreign pitcher in franchise history to start the opening game of a Nippon Series since Joe Stanka in 1964. Source: Nikkan Sports 10/25/2014
  • Kenta Imamiya took the mound at Koshien before fielding practices. He threw a pitch off the Koshien mound for the first time since August 21, 2009. Source: Nikkan Sports 10/25/2014

NS: Fukuoka Softbank Hawks 2 – Hanshin Tigers 6 (October 25, 2014)

by on Oct.25, 2014 @ 5:35 am, under Game Summaries, NPB, Postseason
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Softbank Hawks vs Hanshin Tigers @ Koshien Stadium - 18:15
Starters: Standridge, Jason (SOF) 11-8, 3.30 - Messenger, Randy (HAN) 13-10, 3.20

  1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Softbank 0 0 0 0 0 1 1 0 0 2 6 0
Hanshin 0 0 0 1 5 0 0 0 X 6 9 1

Attendance: 45293 | Time: 3h26m | Hanshin leads series, 1-0-0

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[10/24/2014] Nippon Series: Hanshin Tigers, Softbank Hawks

by on Oct.25, 2014 @ 5:30 am, under NPB
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General News

  • Singer-songwriter Tiina Kariina will perform the national anthem before Game 1. Source: Sanspo 10/24/2014
  • Randy Messenger (Hanshin) and Jason Standridge (Softbank) were announced as starters for Game 1. This is the first time both teams selected foreign pitchers to start the first game of the Nippon Series. Source: Sponichi 10/24/2014

Hanshin Tigers

  • Batting practice scrimmage on Thursday: Kazuya Takamiya faced Kosuke Fukudome (G4) and Takashi Toritani (BB). Sanspo 10/24/2014 ... Matt Murton recorded hits off Yuta Iwasada (1B8), Ryoma Matsuda (1B8), and Kazuyuki Kaneda (1B8). Sanspo 10/24/2014, Sponichi 10/24/2014 ... Mauro Gomez went 2-for-3, including a home run off Matsuda. Sanspo 10/24/2014, Sponichi 10/24/2014
  • Hanshin has been getting calls about merchandising opportunities, including those connected to their Nippon Series appearance, since the 20th. Source: Sanspo 10/24/2014
  • Celebration sales are scheduled to begin the day after the final game of the Nippon Series, regardless of outcome. Hanshin Department Stores Umeda, Nishinomiya, and Amagasaki will hold seven-day sales; Hanshin Department Store Mikage will hold a two-day sale; Hankyu Oasis stores will hold two-day sales; Izumiya will hold a one-day sale. Source: Sponichi 10/24/2014

Softbank Hawks

  • Yuki Yoshimura took fielding practice in the outfield during workouts on Friday. Source: Nikkan Sports 10/24/2014
  • Yuichi Honda (left ring finger) joined Ichi-gun practices on Friday. His day including fielding practice at second and batting practice. Source: Nikkan Sports 10/24/2014
  • Shinya Tsuruoka missed practices on Wednesday and Thursday because he was not feeling well. He rested at home after getting treatment at a hospital. Source: Sponichi 10/24/2014 ... Tsuruoka returned to practices on Friday, but took things easy. Source: Nikkan Sports 10/24/2014
  • The Hawks announced that Taiga Kasahara, Masato Sakata, Masayoshi Tsukada, and Go Kamamoto will play winter ball in Puerto Rico for the Gigantes de Carolina. San-gun pitching coach Shinji Kurano and Ni-gun hitting coach Noriyoshi Omichi will accompany the players. They will leave Japan on October 27 and return on December 24. Source: Nikkan Sports 10/24/2014

[10/24/2014] Rumors: Chihiro Kaneko (Orix), Ginjiro Sumitani (Seibu)

by on Oct.25, 2014 @ 5:28 am, under NPB
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Hanshin Tigers

Yakult Swallows

  • Team officials met Ryoji Aikawa and Hiroyasu Tanaka at the Jingu clubhouse for contract negotiations on Friday and formally asked them to remain in the organization. Both asked for more time to consider their options. Source: Nikkan Sports 10/24/2014

Seibu Lions

  • Ginjiro Sumitani could make a decision on his FA option some time next week. He indicated on Friday that he already spoke to team officials and was planning to decide on what to do with his option after his second meeting. Source: Nikkan Sports 10/24/2014

Orix Buffaloes

  • Chihiro Kaneko is expected to return to Japan in time for fall practices that begins on the 27th. The ace expressed an interest in the Majors before heading to the United States to watch a World Series games. Kaneko earned his domestic FA option this season and is slated to earn his international option next year. The Buffaloes would like Kaneko to return next season, but have not made a final decision on what to do. They are considering all options and will resume deliberations with Kaneko once he returns. Source: Sponichi 10/24/2014, Sports Hochi 10/24/2014 ... If the Buffaloes decide not to post Kaneko, he will most likely remain and hold on to his option. Source: Sanspo 10/24/2014

[10/22/2014] Nippon Series: Hanshin Tigers, Softbank Hawks

by on Oct.23, 2014 @ 10:52 am, under NPB
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Hanshin Tigers

  • Shintaro Fujinami could start Game 3 of the Nippon Series. Source: Sponichi 10/22/2014
  • Nippon Series possible four-man rotation: Randy Messenger, Atsushi Nomi, Fujinami, Minoru Iwata. Source: Sanspo 10/22/2014
  • Kenichi Tagami ran into Hayata Ito while playing defense in the 2nd inning of a Phoenix League game against Doosan on Tuesday. Tagami had to be carried off the field on a stretcher. Tests at a hospital in Miyazaki indicated a cervical spine sprain. The injury does not appear to be serious. Source: Nikkan Sports 10/22/2014
  • Kansai University professor Katsuhiro Miyamoto estimates the economic impact of the Tigers winning the Nippon Series to be around 42.9 billion yen. That is down from previous figures when the Tigers finished in first place in 2003 (148 billion yen) and 2005 (64.3 billion yen). Reasons for the large gap include: a drop in attendance, the team losing steam toward the end of the season, and a failure to finish in first place. There has also been little to no postseason merchandising or celebration sales because stores were not prepared. Source: ZakZak 10/21/2014, Sponichi 10/21/2014

Softbank Hawks

  • Jason Standridge will most likely start Game 1 of the Nippon Series. Source: Daily Sports 10/23/214
  • Kenji Otonari could start Game 3 of the Nippon Series. Source: Sanspo 10/22/2014 ... Another possibility is the Game 2 start. Source: Sponichi 10/23/2014
  • Yuki Yoshimura could play the outfield during games at Koshien, but will most likely be used as a bat off the bench since Akira Nakamura has more experience on defense. Source: Sponichi 10/22/2014
  • Dae-Ho Lee against Seung-Hwan Oh (KBO): 8-for-25. Lee faced Oh during the Inter-league on May 24 and went 1-for-1 (single to left). Source: Sponichi 10/22/2014
  • This year's fan festival will take place at YafuOku Dome on November 24. Gates will open at 12:00 and events will begin at 13:00. Source: official announcement, official announcement

[10/21/2014] Rumors: Yoshihisa Naruse (Lotte), Alfredo Despaigne

by on Oct.22, 2014 @ 2:55 am, under NPB
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Hanshin Tigers

  • The Tigers could be shifting their attention to Yoshihisa Naruse because they believe their chances of landing Chihiro Kaneko are slim to none (Kaneko could end up staying with Orix, or could exercise his FA option, but may not have any interest in Hanshin). Source: Daily Sports 10/21/2014

Orix Buffaloes

  • The Buffaloes are planning to offer Kei Igawa a contract for the 2015 season. Source: Sponichi 10/21/2014


Alfredo Despaigne

  • Lotte official Nobuhira Hayashi flew to Cuba a few days ago to begin discussions for the 2015 season
  • Despaigne is interested in returning to Lotte next year
  • A number of NPB teams are looking into Despaigne, including the Yomiuri Giants and Orix Buffaloes

Source: Sponichi 10/21/2014

[10/21/2014] Suzuki Japan: Hanshin-Yomiuri Mixed Team Roster

by on Oct.21, 2014 @ 10:46 pm, under International, NPB
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The MLB All-Star Team visiting Japan for the Suzuki Japan All-Star Series is scheduled to play one exhibition game against a Hanshin-Yomiuri mixed team on November 11 at Koshien Stadium. A list of players was released by Hanshin today. 

The players will be wearing a replica of the uniform the All-Japan team was wearing when US players visited Japan in 1934. Hiroki Uemoto (left) and Atsushi Nomi (right) modeled the uniforms for the press.

1934 All Japan Team

Additional details will be released as they become available.


Hanshin-Yomiuri Mixed Team

Yutaka Wada is slated to  manage the team.

Pos Name JPN Name ENG Team
P 能見 篤史 Nomi, Atsushi Hanshin Tigers
P 藤浪 晋太郎 Fujinami, Shintaro Hanshin Tigers
P 松田 遼馬 Matsuda, Ryoma Hanshin Tigers
P 西村 健太朗 Nishimura, Kentaro Yomiuri Giants
C 阿部 慎之助 Abe, Shinnosuke Yomiuri Giants
C 小林 誠司 Kobayashi, Seiji Yomiuri Giants
INF 上本 博紀 Uemoto, Hiroki Hanshin Tigers
INF 新井 良太 Arai, Ryota Hanshin Tigers
INF 坂本 勇人 Sakamoto, Hayato Yomiuri Giants
INF 片岡 治大 Kataoka, Yasuyuki Yomiuri Giants
INF 村田 修一 Murata, Shuichi Yomiuri Giants
OF 大和 Maeda, Yamato Hanshin Tigers
OF 亀井 善行 Kamei, Yoshiyuki Yomiuri Giants


Source: official announcement (photo taken from announcement page)

[10/20/2014] Nippon Series: Hanshin Tigers, Softbank Hawks

by on Oct.21, 2014 @ 10:12 am, under NPB
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Hanshin Tigers

  • Full team practices will resume on the 21st. A batting practice scrimmage is scheduled for the 23rd. Source: Sanspo 10/21/2014
  • Advance scouts Akihiro Shimada and Yasutaka Furusato have been checking on the Hawks at YafuOku Dome. Source: Sanspo 10/20/2014, Sanspo 10/21/2014
  • Takahiro Arai could be used as a designated hitter when playing at YafuOku Dome. Source: Sanspo 10/20/2014
  • Seung-Hwan Oh has pitched in the Tigers' last eleven games (last five regular season games, two First Stage games and four Final Stage games). Source: Sports Hochi 10/20/2014, Sponichi 10/20/2014
  • The Tigers could go with a four-man rotation during the Nippon Series: Randy Messenger, Atsushi Nomi, Minoru Iwata, and Shintaro Fujinami. Source: Sponichi 10/20/2014
  • Tomoaki Kanemoto is no longer a candidate to join the staff next year. Source: Sports Hochi 10/20/2014
  • The Tigers will be opening a Nippon Series at Koshien Stadium for the first time since 1964. Source: Sanspo 10/20/2014

Softbank Hawks

  • The Hawks prepared 3,000 beers, 400 sodas, and eight barrels of sake for their celebration on Monday. Source: Sponichi 10/20/2014, Sanspo 10/21/2014
  • There are twelve broadcast booths at YafuOku Dome. A temporary broadcast booth was added on the 18th because there was not enough space. A smoking room was converted and had to be sprayed down and cleaned. It did not have a good view of the field. Source: Sanspo 10/20/2014
  • Softbank recorded its fifteenth sellout of the year on Monday. They may have raked in over 1.5 billion yen during the Final Stage of the Climax Series. Source: Sanspo 10/21/2014