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[2/4/2014] Nippon Ham Fighters News and Notes

by on Feb.05, 2014 @ 2:48 am, under NPB
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Name Date Swings Notes
Shohei Otani 2/4 37 7 over the fence.  Daily Sports 2/4/2014
Sho Nakata 2/4 41 6 over the fence.  Sponichi 2/4/2014
Name Type Date NP Notes
Yuki Saito Bullpen 2/4 135+ Tossed two sessions, fifty-five during first session and over eighty during second session. Nikkan Sports 2/4/2014, Daily Sports 2/4/2014
Naoyuki Uwasawa BP 2/4 35 Faced Atsushi Ugumori and Shingo Ishikawa; allowed three-could-be hits. Sponichi 2/4/2014


The first block of spring camp ended on Tuesday.


Ten pitchers tossed bullpen sessions on Monday.  Umpires called balls and strikes for all the pitchers except Shohei Otani.  The coaches asked the umpires to skip Otani because they did not want him getting distracted by each call.

Source: Nikkan Sports 2/4/2014


The opening day pitcher will most likely be Mitsuo Yoshikawa.  The coaches were thinking of Yoshikawa early on, but did not want to make any assumptions about his condition until they had a chance to see him pitch.  He tossed thirty-three pitches in the bullpen on Monday.  Hideki Kuriyama was not necessarily impressed with the outing, but was pleased to see him heading in the right direction.

Source: Sponichi 2/4/2014

Yoshikawa could pitch in a practice game against Samsung on the 18th.

Source: Sports Hochi 2/4/2014


Yuki Saito kept his workouts light on Monday.  He also spent some time checking on his delivery by throwing into a net.

Source: Nikkan Sports 2/4/2014


Former Yakult Shinya Miyamoto visited Nago camp on Monday.  He checked on Sho Nakata during his visit.  He feels Nakata should be fine with his conversion to third because he has a strong and accurate arm.

Source: Nikkan Sports 2/4/2014

Nakata is scheduled to play third during an intra-squad game on the 6th.

Source: Sponichi 2/4/2014


Luis MendozaMichael Crotta, and Shota Ono went out for yakiniku on Monday night.

Nikkan Sports 2/4/2014


Samurai Japan manager Hiroki Kokubo visited Nago camp on Tuesday.

Source: Nikkan Sports 2/4/2014


Adidas Japan signed an advisory contract with Haruki Nishikawa.

Source: Sponichi 2/4/2014

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[8/26/2013] Injury Updates: Luna (CHU), Fujii (YOK), Yoshikawa (HAM), Kaneko (SEI)

by on Aug.26, 2013 @ 11:33 pm, under NPB
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Chunichi Dragons

The media learned on Sunday that Hector Luna will be returning to the Dominican Republic within the next few days to get a second opinion on his right knee.  Luna is in the process of determining if surgery is his best option.

Source: Sanspo 8/26/2013

The Dragons officially announced today that Luna will return to the Dominican Republic to get treatment for his right knee.  A return to the active roster this season is unlikely.  The team and Luna are still working out a schedule.

Source: Sports Hochi 8/26/2013

"I have decided to return to the Dominican Republic for testing and treating [my right knee].  I feel badly for leaving my teammates in the middle of the season and being a distraction.  I will get better and return next season," said Luna in a prepared statement provided to the media through the team.

Source: Nikkan Sports 8/26/2013

Yokohama Bay Stars

Shugo Fujii told fans on his blog that he visited a hospital this morning and found out that he will not need surgery for his left elbow.

Source: Sponichi 8/26/2013, blog post

Nippon Ham Fighters

Mitsuo Yoshikawa left Sunday's game against Orix in the middle of the 8th because of a cramp -- with runners on first first and second and two out, he threw two pitches to Ryoichi Adachi and developed a cramp in his left leg.

Source: Sports Hochi 8/26/2013, Nikkan Sports 8/26/2013

Seibu Lions

Yuji Kaneko's right knee is still bothering him, but not to the point where he is not able to play.  He returned to the active roster on Sunday and popped out to short in a pinch-hit at bat in the 9th.

Source: Sponichi 8/25/2013

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[6/23/2013] Injury Update: Lopez (YOM), Blanco (YOK), Yoshikawa (HAM), Igawa (ORI)

by on Jun.23, 2013 @ 11:09 pm, under NPB
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Yomiuri Giants

Jose Lopez was removed from the game on defense in the 7th with discomfort in his left side.  He is considered day-to-day.

Source: Nikkan Sports 6/23/2013

Yokohama Bay Stars

Tony Blanco took an HBP off his left elbow during his at bat in the 3rd inning of today's game against Hanshin.  He was replaced by a pinch-runner as a precaution and taken to the hospital for an examination.  His results came back negative for any damage to the bone.  He was diagnosed with a bruise.  He is considered day-to-day.

Source: Sports Hochi 6/23/2013, Nikkan Sports 6/23/2013

Nippon Ham Fighters

Mitsuo Yoshikawa was removed from Saturday's game partway through the 3rd inning because of cramps in both his calves and his left hamstring.  Yoshikawa experienced similar problems during a start against Chunichi on May 15.  The chief trainer told reporters he thought the cramps were caused by dehydration.

There is a good chance Yoshikawa will miss his next start on the 28th against Seibu at Sapporo Dome.

Source: Sponichi 6/23/2013

Orix Buffaloes

Kei Igawa left Saturday's game with a cracked left index fingernail.  He is not expected to miss his next start.

Source: Sanpso 6/23/2013, Sponichi 6/23/2013

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Nippon Ham Fighters News and Notes: March 27, 2013

by on Mar.27, 2013 @ 11:52 pm, under NPB
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Mitsuo Yoshikawa started a Ni-gun game against Seibu on Tuesday and gave up one run on five hits over six innings of work.  He topped out at 148km/h and struck out seven.

Source: Sports Hochi 3/27/2013


1st round draft pick Shohei Otani made the opening day roster.  There is a good chance he will make the opening day starting line-up in right, batting seventh.

Source: Sanspo 3/27/2013

Otani most likely made the opening day roster because starting pitchers in the second-half of the rotation, like Hiroshi Kisanuki and Mitsuo Yoshikawa, have yet to be added.

Source: Daily Sports 3/27/2013

Otani's Ni-gun outing today was rained out.  He will pitch in Thursday's game.

Source: Sanspo 3/27/2013


Takumi Oshima had surgery to remove a bone fragment from his right hand today.  He will begin his rehab at the Ni-gun facilities in Kamagaya once he is discharged from the hospital on the 29th.

Source: Sanspo 3/27/2013Nikkan Sports 3/27/2013

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Nippon Ham Fighters News and Notes: February 20, 2013

by on Feb.20, 2013 @ 11:29 pm, under NPB
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Batting Practice Bullpen Sessions / Batting Practice


  • 1st round draft pick Shohei Otani: situational batting practice, first plate appearance - with runners on first and second and no out, attempted three consecutive sac bunts against Naoyuki Uesawa and failed all three times; second plate appearance - bases empty, no out, walked; third plate appearance - with a runner on first and one out, grounded out to short on a hit-and-run; batting practice, fifty-five swings, four over the fence

Source: Sports Hochi 2/20/2013, Nikkan Sports 2/20/2013


  • Hiroshi Kisanuki: bullpen, thirty-five pitches
  • Mitsuo Yoshikawa: bullpen, sixty-one pitches, only fastballs, at about seventy percent
  • Toshiharu Moriuchi: bullpen, ninety-nine pitches

Source: Nikkan Sports 2/20/2013, Nikkan Sports 2/20/2013, Sports Hochi 2/20/2013


Haruki Nishikawa had his right shoulder examined at a hospital in Itoman, Okinawa today and was diagnosed with inflammation.  He received a shot as part of his treatment and returned to the team hotel for rest.  He is considered day-to-day.

Nishikawa may have hurt his shoulder while trying to make a play on defense during an Ni-gun intra-squad game on the 17th.

Source: Nikkan Sports 2/20/2013


Toshiharu Moriuchi is slated to pitch in a practice game against Nexen (KBO) on Thursday.

Source: Sports Hochi 2/20/2013


Mitsuo Yoshikawa is scheduled to start a practice game against Hiroshima at Nago on the 26th.

Source: Nikkan Sports 2/20/2013


1st round draft pick Shohei Otani had a fairly busy day on Tuesday: he tossed fifty-two pitches in the bullpen, took indoor batting practice against a pitching machine, did some base-running exercises and trunk strengthening exercises, and took about an hour of fielding practice in right.

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

The coaches have apparently decided to give Otani a try in the outfield instead of at short.  He could also join Ichi-gun camp after Ni-gun camp end on the 22nd.

Source: Nikkan Sports 2/20/2013

Otani is slated to toss batting practice to Takumi Oshima, Go Matsumoto, and Shingo Ishikawa on Thursday.

Source: Daily Sports 2/20/2013

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Nippon Ham Fighters News and Notes: February 7, 2013

by on Feb.07, 2013 @ 11:35 pm, under NPB
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Practice Games


  • Intra-squad game, starters Ryo Sakakibara (Red) and Keisaku Itokazu (White).  Whites 6 - Reds 5.
  • Sho Nakata started in left and batted fourth for the White team.  He hit a home run in his first at bat in the 2nd inning (first pitch from Masaru Saito).  Finished 2-for-4: solo HR, G6, 1B-7, G6.  He also moved from left to first in the 6th inning.
  • Atsunori Inaba started at first and batted fourth for the Red team.  He went 1-for-3: fo5, G4, 1B-7.
  • Dai-Kang Yoh started in center and batted first.  He went 2-for-4 with three RBI: K, 2-run HR, G5, RBI 1B-9.

Source: Nikkan Sports 2/7/2013Nikkan Sports 2/7/2013, Sanspo 2/7/2013, Sanspo 2/7/2013


Mitsuo Yoshikawa is scheduled to toss batting practice some time during the fourth block of spring camp.

Source: Nikkan Sports 2/7/2013


Sho Nakata fielded grounders with a first baseman's mitt for about an hour on Wednesday.

It started with three players for the first half and ended with two players in the second half.  About 770 baseballs were used.

Source: Nikkan Sports 2/7/2013


1st round draft pick Shohei Otani could make his debut as a hitter during a practice game against KIA (KBO) on the 14th.

Source: Sanspo 2/7/2013

Otani's debut as a pitcher could take place during an intra-squad game on the 17th.

During his bullpen session on Wednesday, he threw thirty-four fastballs, nine curves, five sliders, and two cutters.

He could have the catcher squat during his next session, which might be as early as the 10th.

Source: Sanspo 2/7/2013

Otani could remain with the Ni-gun team after Ni-gun spring camp ends on the 22nd.

Source: Daily Sports 2/7/2013

Otani used glasses and a surgical mask as a disguise for his trip back home on Wednesday.  It did not stop fans from calling out to him at Haneda Airport.

Source: Sponichi 2/7/2013


At around 3:20pm on Wednesday, the Fighters e-mailed all players at Nago camp about the tsunami warnings and reminded them to stay away from the ocean.

Source: Daily Sports 2/7/2013

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Nippon Ham Fighters News and Notes: February 1, 2013

by on Feb.01, 2013 @ 11:49 pm, under NPB
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Batting Practice Bullpen Sessions / Batting Practice


  • 1st round draft pick Shohei Otani: twenty-two swings against live arm, seven could-be hits; twenty-three swings against machine, nine could-be hits

Source: Nikkan Sports 2/1/2013, Daily Sports 2/1/2013


  • Hiroshi Kisanuki: bullpen, fifty pitches, all fastballs

Source: Nikkan Sports 2/1/2013


Atsunori Inaba stayed back after regular workouts today for extra fielding and batting practice.

Source: Sanspo 2/1/2013


Mitsuo Yoshikawa did not toss a bullpen session today but did play catch.  There is still no timetable for when he will pitch in the bullpen.

"I it is still not quite there, but I am feeling less pain [every time I throw the ball]," said Yoshikawa.

Source: Nikkan Sports 2/1/2013


Yuki Saito played catch at a distance of about thirty meters.

Source: Sanspo 2/1/2013


Hideki Kuriyama threw salt onto the fields on Thursday to ward off the evil spirits.

Source: Nikkan Sports 2/1/2013

Kuriyama started at Ichi-gun camp today, worked his way to Ni-gun camp after morning workouts to check on players coming back from injuries, like Makoto Kaneko and Eiichi Koyano, and then went back to Ichi-gun camp.

It takes about forty minutes to get from one camp to the other by car.

Source: Sponichi 2/1/2013


About 300 fans greeted the Nippon Ham Fighters at Naha Airport on Thursday.  Thirty TV cameras also crowded the airport.

Source: Sanspo 2/1/2013Sponichi 2/1/2013


GAORA will try to provide as much coverage of 1st round draft pick Shohei Otani during spring camp.  They are already prepared to handle live feeds from the Ni-gun camp facilities (their main focus still remains Ichi-gun camp).

Source: Nikkan Sports 2/1/2013

Otani speaks to the media:

You are now in Okinawa.  Your impressions?

It is a warm place.  I had a good workout during rookie training camp.  I want to keep going tomorrow.

This will be your first spring camp.  Your thoughts?

I am not sure about the practice menus.  I do not know how things go over the course of the day.  I am a little worried, but I want to strap myself in and go.  I would like to get through this at my own pace.

Are you ready?

I want to do what I have to and absorb whatever information, like advice and tips from other players, I can.

Did Kuriyama say anything to you?

He told me not to feel rushed...  That it must be difficult being in the spotlight and that I should not worry about all the eyes looking at me.

Source: Sanspo 2/1/2013

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2012 Hochi Pro Sports Award given to Shinnosuke Abe, Mitsuo Yoshikawa

by on Nov.22, 2012 @ 10:41 pm, under NPB
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The winners of the 2012 Hochi Pro Sports Award were selected on Wednesday.  In baseball, the Central League Award went to Shinnosuke Abe (Yomiuri) and the Pacific League Award to Mitsuo Yoshikawa (Nippon Ham).  Abe won the CL award for the second time in his career (2007, 2012).

Source: 2012 Hochi Pro Sports Award

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Mitsuo Yoshikawa wins the 2012 Sapporo Dome MVP

by on Nov.22, 2012 @ 3:38 pm, under NPB
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Mitsuo Yoshikawa is the winner of this year's Sapporo Dome MVP.

  • He received 473 of 1,305 votes cast by fans at the official Sapporo Dome website.
  • He recorded the first double-digit victory season of his career and recorded his tenth victory of the year during a start at Sapporo Dome.  He also led his team in wins.
  • He won the ERA title in the Pacific League.
  • He went 7-2 with a 1.42 ERA in eleven starts at Sapporo Dome.

Source: official announcement via Nikkan Sports 11/22/2012

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Central League and Pacific League 2012 MVPs announced

by on Nov.21, 2012 @ 5:36 pm, under NPB
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The NPB announced the winneres of the 2012 MVP Award today:

Central League: Shinnsouke Abe (Yomiuri)

138 G, 159-for-467, 72 R, 22 2B, 1 3B, 27 HR, 264 TB, 104 RBI, 47 SO, 69 BB, .340/.429/.565

Pacific League: Mitsuo Yoshikawa (Nippon Ham)

25 G, 25 GS, 14-5, 5 CG, 3 ShO, 173.2 IP, 108 H, 6 HR, 158 K, 45 BB, 35 R, 33 ER, 1.71 ERA, 0.88 WHIP

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