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Rakuten Eagles: February 15, 2012

by on Feb.15, 2012 @ 11:58 pm, under NPB
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Bullpen Sessions / Batting Practice

General

  • Satoshi Nagai threw 101 pitches in the bullpen on February 14 and 100 pitches on February 13.  The session on the February 14 was his eighth since the start of spring camp. (Nikkan Sports)

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The Eagles apparently see James Heuser as a possible closer.  His tryouts will last another week or so.

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Satoshi Nagai plans to toss a 200+ pitch bullpen session soon.

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Senichi Hoshino told reporters on Tuesday that he likes what he sees in 2nd round draft pick Yoshinao Kamata.  He also said that he will continue to push hard batting practices at until about ten days before the start of the regular season.

On Wednesday, Hoshino and the coaches checked out the facilities at Kin Stadium -- they are scheduled to play six practice/exhibition games there, beginning on Thursday.

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Hoshino's three MVPs from the first half of spring campShintaro Masuda, Ginji, and Toshihito Abe.

====== UPDATE 2/16 @ 12:52am

Keiji Uezono is scheduled to start a game against the Hanshin Tigers on February 22.

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Kohei Hasebe will be making a start against the Yomiuri Giants on February 21.

Rakuten Eagles: February 9, 2012

by on Feb.09, 2012 @ 11:59 pm, under NPB
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Batting Practice Bullpen Sessions

Thursday

  • Luis Terrero took sixty-one swings and hit four over the fence.  He also hit twenty-two baseballs toward left, nineteen toward center, and fourteen toward right. (Nikkan Sports)

Wednesday

  • Satoshi Nagai threw forty pitches in the bullpen.  He also had the catcher sit for the first time since the start of spring camp. (Sports Hochi)
  • Keiji Uezono faced Naoto Inada and Toshihito Abe situational during batting practice and allowed eleven hits on sixty-three pitches.  Daisuke Kato faced Fuminori Yokogawa, Toshiya Nakashima, and Ginji Akaminai and threw seventy pitches.  Kato also hit Nakashima in the left elbow. (Sponichi)

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The Eagles had the day off today.

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The Eagles closed out their first block of spring camp with a thirty minute run on the beach.

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Masahiro Tanaka tossed six bullpen session during the first block of spring camp (February 1 - February 8).

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All seven members of the 2011 draft class relaxed at Bade Haus Kumejima (Dee Sea Spa & Resort) earlier this morning.  And four members of the 2011 draft class (twenty and older) visited a liquor plant for Kumejima's Kumesen on their day off today. 

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The team has ordered about 200 Virus Blockers (CL-40, three pack, 2,500 yen) and will hand them out to players, staff, and media members.

Rakuten Eagles: February 5, 2012

by on Feb.05, 2012 @ 11:58 pm, under NPB
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Batting Practice Bullpen Sessions

Saturday

  • Akihisa Makida took forty-two swings and hit seven over the fence. (Sanspo)

Sunday

  • 1st round draft pick Yoshitaka Muto threw 155 pitches, including off-speed pitches. (Nikkan Sports)
  • Tsuyoshi Shimoyanagi threw about forty pitches. (Sanspo)
  • Shinichiro Koyama threw seventy-one pitches. (Nikkan Sports)
  • Yoshitaka Hashimoto tossed a bullpen session. (Nikkan Sports)

Saturday

  • Keiji Uezono threw 100 pitches in the bullpen.  It was his fourth session in as many days. (Sanspo)
  • Tsuyoshi Shimoyanagi threw seventy-nine pitches, including off-speed pitches.  He also had the catcher squat for the first time this year. (Daily Sports)
  • Masahiro Tanaka threw twenty-four pitches to a standing catcher and thirty-seven pitchers to a squatting catcher. (Sanspo)

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Early morning workouts began at 7:30am today.

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Senichi Hoshino spent about twenty minutes hitting grounders (166 swings) to Shinichiro Koyama, Masahiro Tanaka, Darrell Rasner, and Kelvin Jimenez today.

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During early morning shout outs today, Takahiro Shiomi said he wanted to pitch well enough to remain in the rotation a full year and record at least fifteen victoriesthis season.

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When Hoshino called over to Akihisa Makida on Saturday, he told the 29-year-old that he should lift his face while walking because he was the team's clean-up batter.  While chances are fairly good that Hoshino has yet to really decide on a clean-up hitter, he most likely did give Makida a jarring wake-up call.

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Team chairman Hiroshi Mikitani observed the team today (beginning with early morning practices at around 7am).

Rakuten Eagles: February 3, 2012

by on Feb.03, 2012 @ 11:57 pm, under NPB
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Batting Practice Bullpen Sessions

Thursday

  • Kazuo Matsui took sixty-three swings and hit forty-six baseball to the opposite direction. (Nikkan Sports)

Friday

  • 1st round draft pick Yoshitaka Muto threw 116 pitches, including off-speed pitches.  This was his third bullpen session in as many days -- he threw fifty pitches on Wednesday. (Sponichi)

Thursday

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If batting coach Hiromoto Okubo could have his way, he would most likely bat Kazuo Matsui forth this year.

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Matsui will be testing a new bat based on the model he used in 2001: 33.5 inches long and around 890 grams.

He was named captain of the team during a team meeting today.

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Keiji Uezono is a candidate for the starting rotation.

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Senichi Hoshino hit a total 223 baseballs during fielding practice for pitchers on Thursday.  Masahiro Tanaka, Takahiro Shiomi, and 1st round draft pick Yoshitaka Muto were part of the group (a total seven pitchers were in the group).

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Norihiro Akahoshi visited Hoshino today.  When reporters asked if he would be interested in hiring Akahoshi as a special instructor, he jokingly replied, "I want to give him a tryout!"  Akahoshi responded, "I am still working out so I am ready to be called up at any time."

Rakuten Eagles: January 20, 2012

by on Jan.20, 2012 @ 11:45 pm, under NPB
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Keiji Uezono worked out at Kleenex Stadium today.  The last time Uezono was at the stadium was for his press conference after joining the team in a trade with the Hanshin Tigers.

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Senichi Hoshino confirmed to reporters today that Tsuyoshi Shimoyanagi will be given an invite to/tryout during spring camp.

On Thursday, Hoshino told reporters he thought the Yomiuri Giants did too much during the off-season and that they were on their way to becoming unpopular again.  He also said all the upgrades made the coaches seem like they were not capable of developing talent.

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Daisuke Kato threw his knuckle-curve, fork, slider, and cutter during his 25-pitch bullpen session on Thursday.

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Hayato Kawaguchi worked out at Kleenex Stadium on Thursday.  Since fall camp last year, Kawaguchi has been working out about two hours a day.  That also includes about an hour's worth of running.

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The Eagles will begin accepting applications for fans wanting to enroll in the 1001 (Senichi) Club on January 22.

Rakuten sends Matsuzaki to Hanshin for Uezono

by on Dec.08, 2011 @ 9:44 pm, under NPB
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The Hanshin Tigers and Rakuten Eagles announced a one-to-one trade that sends Keiji Uezono (27) to Rakuten for Shingo Matsuzaki (28).

Rakuten Eagles announcement - Hanshin Tigers announcement

UPDATE 12/19 @ 2:21pm - The Tigers held a press conference at their team offices in Nishinomiya today in order to introduce Matsuzaka to the media.

UPDATE 12/20 @ 4:31pm - The Eagles introduced Uezono to the media today.  He was assigned the number 47.

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2011 Season - Shingo Matsuzaki

Level G W L SV HLD CG SHO PCT BF IP H HR BB IBB HB SO WP BK R ER ERA
Ichi-gun 3 0 0 0 0 0 0 .000 20 5.1 4 0 1 0 0 3 0 0 0 0 0.00
Ni-gun 27 1 2 0 - 0 0 .333 139 31.2 33 1 9 0 2 28 3 0 18 16 4.55

2011 Season - Keiji Uezono

Level G W L SV HLD CG SHO PCT BF IP H HR BB IBB HB SO WP BK R ER ERA
Ni-gun 16 1 3 0 - 0 0 .250 160 38.0 39 1 7 0 3 29 2 0 14 13 3.08

Hanshin Tigers Spring Camp News and Notes: February 4, 2011

by on Feb.04, 2011 @ 11:57 am, under NPB
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This post will be updated throughout the day.

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The Tigers have the day off today.

=== 8:51pm

Daiki Enokida (1st round) visited Onna Glass Kobu today and attempted to make a beer mug (he failed the first two times and finally succeeded on his third try). ... The seven rookies at Ni-gun camp visited an Aki nursery school and played dodge ball with the kids today. ... Kubo, Shinji Komiyama, Shunsuke Fujikawa, Masashi Nohara, and Issei Morita all worked out on their day off today.

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Kubo told reporters today that he's still no closer to signing a deal with the Hanshin Tigers.  When asked if he could consider salary arbitration, Kubo said it didn't make much sense for him because it wasn't just a money issue.

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If Kenji Jojima's training continues to progress smoothly, he could stay at Ichi-gun camp after Ni-gun camp ends on the 22nd.  He told reporters yesterday that the only thing left for him was to start a serious running program.

Jojima's potential schedule during spring camp: start BP during the second block; start taking grounders during the third block; long distance throws and other exercises to help strengthen the throwing shoulder in the fourth block, and the fifth block is the last block of Ni-gun spring camp.

=== 11:57am

Tomoaki Kanemoto played catch outdoors yesterday for the first time during spring camp (distance of about 12 meters; 57 tosses).  If he doesn't hit any road blocks, he could begin taking fielding practice in the OF during the second block of spring camp.  About 300 fans, 10 TV cameras, and 62 reporters (including 17 photographers) watched Kanemoto's throwing session.

Kanemoto also took 58 swings during soft toss BP and might be able to start taking indoor BP against live arms / machines some time during the second block.

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Tomoyuki KubotaHiroyuki Kobayashi, and Kyuji Fujikawa all held bullpen sessions at the same time yesterday (for about 7 minutes).  For Fujikawa, it was his second bullpen session in as many days (he threw 20 pitches).  Kobayashi threw 35 pitches, 10 more than his previous session.  Kubota threw 31 pitches to a standing catcher and is hoping to have the catcher sit during the second block of camp.

Yasutomo Kubo was also included with the group above at one point, but he threw 117 pitches and also ended up pitching alongside Atsushi Nomi, who threw 102.  Both pitchers only threw fastballs.

Kubo later told reporters that he wasn't planning on throw so many pitches but changed his mind because the ball kept slipping out of his hand and he wanted to make the necessary adjustments.  He also mentioned that he got a little caught up in Nomi tossing his session.

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When Akinobu Mayumi was asked what he thought of regarding Atsushi Nomi 7 game winning streak against the Yomiuri Giants, he said he might think about setting the rotation so that Nomi pitches most of his games against Yomiuri.  But he also added that it would be difficult to create a rotation based on which pitchers did well against which teams.

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Keiji Uezono threw 106 pitches in the bullpen yesterday.  Ni-gun pitching coach Keiichi Yabu gave Ueno tips on how to use the pitching rubber more effectively.

Said Yabu, "He was using the same spot on the pitching rubber too much.  If he changes where he starts from, he can change the angle he throws the ball increasing the variety of his pitches.  It gives the batters something else to think about."

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The Tigers' coaches and foreign players went out for dinner last nightMatt Murton was apparently pleased the coaches decided to schedule the dinner because it gave him a chance to learn more about what the coaches wanted / expected from them.