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[7/27/2014] Chunichi Dragons: Hitoki Iwase becomes first player in NPB to record 400 saves

by on Jul.27, 2014 @ 1:28 am, under NPB
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Hitoki Iwase recorded the 400th save of his career on Saturday in a game against the Yomiuri Giants at Nagoya Dome.  He is the first pitcher in the NPB to save 400 games.  The milestone save came in his 885th career game.  He recorded his first save on June 23, 1999 against Yomiuri at Nagoya Dome.

Source: Sponichi 7/26/2014


Save Milestones

Save Date Opponent Venue
1 06/23/1999 Yomiuri Nagoya Dome
100 07/30/2006 Yomiuri Nagoya Dome
150 09/09/2007 Yakult Nagoya Dome
200 05/12/2009 Yakult Nagaragawa Stadium
250 06/16/2010 Nippon Ham Nagoya Dome
300 09/03/2011 Hiroshima Mazda Stadium
350 04/18/2013 Yakult Jingu Stadium
400 07/26/2014 Yomiuri Nagoya Dome


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Chunichi Dragons: Hitoki Iwase records 350th career save

by on Apr.18, 2013 @ 11:44 pm, under NPB
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Hitoki Iwase notched his 350th career save tonight in game against the Yakult Swallows.

When asked during his post-game interview what his next goal was, he replied, "351 [saves]."  The interviewer followed up by asking if there might be a better number, hinting at the number 400.  Iwase in turn said, "It is one at a time.  If I get close to that number, then I will try my best again."

Source: Sponichi 4/18/2013


Road to 350 Saves

Save # Date Oppoent Venue
350 4/18/2013 Yakult Jingu
300 9/3/2011 Hiroshima Mazda
250 6/16/2010 Nippon Ham Nagoya Dome
200 5/12/2009 Yakult Nagaragawa
150 9/9/2007 Yakult Nagoya Dome
100 7/30/2006 Yomiuri Nagoya Dome
1 6/23/1999 Yomiuri Nagoya Dome

Top Ten in Saves

    Player JPN Player ENG Saves Games
1 * 岩瀬 仁紀 Iwase, Hitoki 349 805
2   高津 臣吾 Takatsu, Shingo 286 598
3   佐々木主浩 Sasaki, Kazuhiro 252 439
4   小林 雅英 Kobayashi Masahide 228 463
5   藤川 球児 Fujikawa, Kyuji 220 562
6   江夏  豊 Enatsu, Yutaka 193 829
7 * 馬原 孝浩 Mahara, Takahiro 180 318
8   クルーン Kroon, Marc 177 304
9 * 永川 勝浩 Nagakawa, Katsuhiro 164 386
10   豊田  清 Toyoda, Kiyoshi 157 558

* active players

Chunichi Dragons News and Notes: February 20, 2013

by on Feb.20, 2013 @ 11:48 pm, under NPB
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Batting Practice Bullpen Sessions / Batting Practice


  • 3rd round draft pick Takeru Furumoto: sixty-one swings, thirty-eight could-be hits

Source: Nikkan Sports 2/20/2013


  • Kazuki Yoshimi: situational batting practice, faced thirteen batters, no hits, three strikeouts

Source: Sports Hochi 2/20/2013


Hitoki Iwase threw the knuckleball five to six times during situational batting practice today.  He told reporters he was curious to see how batters would react.

Source: Sports Hochi 2/20/2013


Three players were sent to the hospital today: Masahiro Yamamoto for gastroenteritis, Masahiro Araki for the flu, and Yusuke Matsui for a rash he developed on his neck.

Yamamoto and Matsui might be able to return to practices on Thursday.  Araki will rest and rejoin the team as soon as he is feeling better.

Source: Sponichi 2/20/2013, Sanspo 2/20/2013


Motonobu Tanishige worked with the Akihiro Maeda, Daisuke Tanaka, and Masato Matsui for about an hour on Tuesday.

Source: Nikkan Sports 2/20/2013


3rd round draft pick Takeru Furumoto was called up to Ichi-gun camp for workouts on Tuesday.  He was not able to do much in front of the coaches because of the weather and will likely get at least one more day.  And while Morimichi Takagi has not discussed it with other members of the staff, it seems he is open to keeping the rookie around, so long as he does well.

Source: Sponichi 2/20/2013

Furumoto is about ten kilograms overweight, mostly because he was out with an eye injury in August last year and could not do much training.

Source: Nikkan Sports 2/20/2013


Daisuke Yamai threw about forty pitches to a squatting catcher on flat ground on Tuesday.

Source: Sponichi 2/20/2013


The Dragons announced that their farm team will play games against four amateur teams (Industrial League) next month.  All four games will be free.


Date Time Teams Venue
3/4 (Mon) 12:30 Chunichi vs Eiwa Shoji Wing Baseball Team Nagoya Stadium
3/6 (Wed) 12:30 Chunichi vs jProject Nagoya Stadium
3/19 (Tue) 12:30 Chunichi vs Tokai Rika Nagoya Stadium
3/20 (Wed) 12:30 Chunichi vs Oji Nagoya Stadium

Source: official announcement

Chunichi Dragons News and Notes: February 18, 2013

by on Feb.18, 2013 @ 11:50 pm, under NPB
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Bullpen Sessions / Batting Practice


  • Hitoki Iwase: bullpen, 113 pitches, including about ten knuckleballs

Source: Sports Hochi 2/18/2013


Ichi-gun and Ni-gun camp had the day off today.


Hitoki Iwase fiddled with a knuckleball during his bullpen session on Sunday.  It was a pitch he used to throw before he turned pro.

Source: Sports Hochi 2/18/2013


Takehiko Tsuji and Kento Yachi were demoted to Ni-gun on Sunday.  Ryuya Ogawa was called up.

Source: Nikkan Sports 2/18/2013


Yusuke Matsui is 7-for-14 with one home run and seven RBI over three pre-season games.

Source: Sponichi 2/18/2013

Chunichi Dragons News and Notes: February 10, 2013

by on Feb.10, 2013 @ 11:47 pm, under NPB
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Batting Practice Bullpen Sessions / Batting Practice


  • Hector Luna: forty-five swings, one over the fence
  • Shuhei Takahashi: six over the fence

Source: Sanspo 2/10/2013, Sanspo 2/10/2013


  • Hitoki Iwase: bullpen, about forty pitches
  • Soma Yamauchi: bullpen, sixty-five pitches

Source: Nikkan Sports 2/10/2013, Sanspo 2/10/2013


Daniel Cabrera was excused from practices today because of neck pain (he slept on it weird).  His status for tomorrow is unknown.

Source: Sanspo 2/10/2013, Nikkan Sports 2/10/2013


Soma Yamauchi's goal for spring camp is to throw 1,800 pitches.

Source: Sponichi 2/10/2013


Yohei Oshima played catch at distances of twenty, thirty, and forty meters during workouts on Saturday.  He also swung the bat 165 times (eight-nine with both hands and seventy-six with just his right hand) over thirty minutes during soft-toss batting practice.  It was the first time Oshima threw and took batting practice since the 4th.

Source: Nikkan Sports 2/10/2013, Daily Sports 2/10/2013

Oshima took batting practice against a pitching machine today.

Source: Sponichi 2/10/2013


If Hitoki Iwase records three saves against Yakult this year, he will become the first pitcher in NPB history to record at least fifty saves against each team in his league.  Iwase currently has sixty-four saves against Yokohama, sixty-one against Hanshin, fifty-eight against Hiroshima, fifty-four against Yomiuri, and forty-seven against Yakult.

Source: Sponichi 2/10/2013

Chunichi Dragons News and Notes: February 2, 2013

by on Feb.02, 2013 @ 11:59 pm, under NPB
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Batting Practice Bullpen Sessions / Batting Practice


Matt Clark: fifty-five swings, nine over the fence

Source: Sanspo 2/2/2013


  • Hitoki Iwase: bullpen, thirty-five pitches, just fastballs, second session in as many days
  • 1st round draft pick Koji Fukutani: bullpen, thirty-one pitches, catcher squatted partway through
  • Masahiro Yamamoto: bullpen, thirty-four pitches, squatting catcher
  • Kazuki Yoshimi: bullpen, nineteen pitches

Source: Sports Hochi 2/2/2013, Sponichi 2/2/2013, Nikkan Sports 2/2/2013


Morimichi Takagi participated in an opening ceremony for the Chatan Industry Festival today.

Source: Nikkan Sports 2/2/2013

On Friday, he watched Brad Bergesen toss a bullpen session, Matt Clark take batting practice, hit grounders to players on the secondary field for about thirty minutes, and signed autographs for about an hour.

Source: Sponichi 2/2/2013


Twenty players took batting practice on the first day of camp on Friday.  Clark led all of them with nine shots over the fence.

Source: Nikkan Sports 2/2/2013


Hitoki Iwase did not pitch out of the set position on Friday and instead went with a no-windup delivery.

Source: Nikkan Sports 2/2/2013

Chunichi Dragons discuss retirement with Yamamoto, Kawakami, Yamasaki, Iwase

by on Nov.02, 2012 @ 4:32 pm, under NPB
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Masahiro Yamamoto (47), Takeshi Yamasaki (43), Hitoki Iwase (37), and Kenshin Kawakami (37) are all planning to continue their active careers next season.  The media learned on Monday that the Chunichi Dragons met all four and broached the topic of retirement.

Team president Katsuhiko Sakai, team rep Ryohei Sato, and chief of team developement Takashi Ide met each of the players at a hotel in Nagoya on October 31.  They pushed each to continue playing in 2013.  They also said they planned to approach each of them during the season next year to discuss their future plans.

Said Sato, "Retirement did come up.  We asked what they thought about it.  We want them to consider becoming coaches at some point."

Bottom line, it seems the Dragons do not want to dance around the issue and want to keep things open.

Yamamoto and Yamasaki were uncertain about their futures before they decided to commit to 2013.  The other two are still probably a couple years away from retirement: Iwase led the league in saves this year and Kawakami just finished year one of his NPB comeback.

Source: Sponichi 11/2/2012, Sports Hochi Osaka 11/2/2012


UPDATE @ 10:15pm - Nikkan Sports has a quote from Sato that explains what the Dragons are trying to do.

"We cannot just think a player's career is over and assume they know what we are thinking.  It also is not good for the player to be in a situation where they might not know if it is ok for them to stick around or they are not sure about what to do.  I just said that beginning next year, we should speak openly about these things and not assume/suspect what the other is thinking."

Source: Nikkan Sports 11/2/2012

Updates on Tamura (Softbank), Iwamura (Rakuten), Iwase (Chunichi) from August 5, 2012

by on Aug.05, 2012 @ 9:08 pm, under NPB
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Softbank Hawks

Hitoshi Tamura sprained his right pinky finger when he slide back into second (on a pick-off) in the bottom of the 4th inning of today's game against the Seibu Lions (he was removed on defense before the top of the 5th).  He will most likely be taken off the active roster on Monday.  Source: Sponichi 8/5/2012

Rakuten Eagles

Akinori Iwamura was taken off the active roster today with pain/discomfort in his left hamstring.  He suffered the injury during Friday's game against the Nippon Ham Fighters.  Source: Sponichi 8/5/2012

Chunichi Dragons

The Dragons announced today that MRIs on Hitoki Iwase's left shoulder and elbow came back negative.  Source: Sponichi 8/5/2012

UPDATE: Iwase will begin Ni-gun workouts at Nagoya Stadium on August 7.  Source: Nikkan Sports 8/5/2012

Chunichi Dragons: Hitoki Iwase to get his left shoulder and elbow evaluated

by on Aug.04, 2012 @ 11:58 am, under NPB
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According to Nikkan Sports, Hitoki Iwase is scheduled to get an MRI on his left shoulder and elbow today.

Iwase was taken off the active roster on Thursday and reported to the Ni-gun training facilities at Nagoya Stadium on Friday (he did not do any workouts that involved picking up a baseball).

Said Iwase of his condition, "It is not discomfort, more like a feeling that something does not feel quite right.  I suppose it would have been better if I could have worked through this [at Ichi-gun], but I also was not pitching well.  I do not want to create any more problems for the team."

Chunichi Dragons: Hitoki Iwase taken off active roster

by on Aug.02, 2012 @ 5:32 pm, under NPB
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Hitoki Iwase was taken off the active roster today in order to get a tune-up at Ni-gun.

Said pitching coach Hiroshi Gondo, "It is a regretful demotion.  I spoke to Iwase after the game yesterday and I made the decision.  Then I told the manager.  This is to help him get back to throwing with confidence.  Closer's pitch under a lot of emotional pressure.  There is no timetable [for his return].  I will talk to him after a week.  Is it ok to bring him up, or not.  Right now, I do not know how long it will take.  I did not think sending him to Ni-gun was necessary yesterday, but he approached me. He must be that prepared."

Source: Daily Sports 8/2/2012

FWIW: Gondo said the following to reporters after last night's game: "We will continue to use [Iwase].  Iwase is Chunichi's trump card.  If we do not get our trump card back to where he should be, we will not be able to keep up [with Yomiuri]."

Source: Nikkan Sports 8/2/2012