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[1/25/2015] Softbank Hawks, Orix Buffaloes, Nippon Ham Fighters, Chiba Lotte Marines, Seibu Lions, Rakuten Eagles

by on Jan.26, 2015 @ 2:40 am, under NPB
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Softbank Hawks

Orix Buffaloes

  • The Buffaloes held a meeting on Sunday to discuss spring camp assignments. Hiroyuki Nakajima, Eiichi Koyano, first round draft pick Sachiya Yamasaki, fourth round draft pick Ban Takagi, seventh round draft pick Masahiro Nishino, and eighth round draft pick Yuya Oda will be assigned to Ichi-gun camp. Source: Nikkan Sports 1/25/2015

Nippon Ham Fighters

  • Shohei Otani threw thirty-two pitches, including curves and sliders, to a standing catcher in the bullpen on Sunday. It was his first session in Okinawa. He also took forty-three swings during batting practice and hit five over the fence. Source: Sports Hochi 1/25/2015, Sponichi 1/25/2015, Nikkan Sports 1/25/2015
  • Yuki Saito could pitch in his first game of the year on February 8 (intra-squad game). Source: Nikkan Sports 1/25/2015

Chiba Lotte Marines

  • Second round draft pick Eisuke Tanaka thew thirty-nine pitches, all fastballs, to a standing catcher in the bullpen on Saturday. He worked quickly with only brief pauses in between each pitch (as little as nine seconds). Source: Sports Hochi 1/25/2015 ... Tanaka threw about forty on Friday. Source: Sanspo 1/25/2015

Seibu Lions

  • First round draft pick Kona Takahashi could make his debut during a practice game against Ni-gun Hanshin on February 18. Source: Sanspo 1/25/2015 ... Takahashi threw thirty-one pitches to a squatting catcher in the bullpen on Sunday. It was his first session with a squatting catcher. Source: Sports Hochi 1/25/2015, Sponichi 1/25/2015

Rakuten Eagles

  • Yusuke Nishimiya threw fifty-three pitches to a squatting catcher in the bullpen on Sunday. It was his third session in as many days. Source: Nikkan Sports 1/25/2015
  • The 2014 draft class took a battery of physical fitness tests at Sendai University on Saturday. Source: Sponichi 1/25/2015

[1/24/2015] Softbank Hawks, Orix Buffaloes, Nippon Ham Fighters, Chiba Lotte Marines, Seibu Lions, Rakuten Eagles

by on Jan.25, 2015 @ 6:07 am, under NPB
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Softbank Hawks

  • Yuki Yanagita was the recipient of the 2014 Yanase Softbank Hawks MVP award. The award came with a Mercedes Benz E250. Source: Nikkan Sports 1/24/2015

Orix Buffaloes

  • Alessandro Maestri arrived at Kansai Airport on Saturday. He will continue his off-season training in Kobe. Source: Nikkan Sports 1/24/2015

Nippon Ham Fighters

  • Shohei Otani took sixty-six swings during outdoor batting practice on Saturday and hit twelve over the fence. Source: Nikkan Sports 1/24/2015
  • Naoki Miyanishi tossed a bullpen session on Saturday to a standing catcher at about seventy percent. Source: Nikkan Sports 1/24/2015
  • Kenshi Sugiya was told to be ready to play second base this year, but packed six different kinds of gloves (infield and outfield) just in case. Source: Sports Hochi 1/24/2015
  • First round draft pick Kohei Arihara (right elbow) was playing catch at a distance of about thirty meters on the 10th. He managed to stretch out to between sixty and seventy meters on Friday. Source: Nikkan Sports 1/24/2015
  • Nago Stadium is using dirt from Turface Athletics. Source: Sponichi 1/24/2015

Chiba Lotte Marines

  • Dae-Eun Rhee arrived at Haneda Airport on Saturday. Source: Nikkan Sports 1/24/2015
  • Second round draft pick Eisuke Tanaka threw thirty-nine pitches to a standing catcher in the bullpen on Saturday. It was his third session of the year and second in as many days. Source: Nikkan Sports 1/24/2015 ... Trainers gave Tanaka an A rating in cardiorespiratory endurance, flexibility, agility, speed, and power; and a B rating in muscle endurance. Source: Sponichi 1/24/2015
  • Third round draft pick Daiki Iwashita threw fifty-five pitches in the bullpen on Saturday. It was his second session of the year. Source: Nikkan Sports 1/24/2015
  • Training camp for the 2014 draft class ended on Saturday. Source: Sports Hochi 1/24/2015

Seibu Lions

  • Yusei Kikuchi was able to increase his full squats by thirty to 200 kilograms and his deadlifts by 100 to 300 kilograms. Source: Nikkan Sports 1/24/2015 ... Kikuchi weighed seventy-eight kilograms when he first joined the Lions. He reached 100 kilograms this year. Source: Daily Sports 1/24/2015

Rakuten Eagles

  • According to Nikkan Sports, first round draft pick Tomohiro Anraku was slated to throw upwards of thirty pitches in the bullpen on Friday, but stopped after twenty because he was having a bad session. Source: Nikkan Sports 1/24/2015 ... The bullpen session was Anraku's first since January 5. All twenty pitches were fastballs. Anraku had a good feel for only two or three. Source: Sports Hochi 1/24/2015

Other

  • Former Kintetsu Buffalo Takashi Imoto died of pancreatic cancer at a hospital in Matsudo, Chiba at 11:18pm on the 21st. He was sixty-four. Source: Daily Sports 1/24/2015

[1/22/2015] Softbank Hawks, Orix Buffaloes, Nippon Ham Fighters, Chiba Lotte Marines, Seibu Lions, Rakuten Eagles

by on Jan.23, 2015 @ 2:04 am, under NPB
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Softbank Hawks

  • Kenichi Nakata threw thirty-two pitches to a standing catcher on Thursday. Source: Nikkan Sports 1/22/2015
  • Yuya Hasegawa had surgery on his right ankle in December last year. He worked out at the Saitozaki facilities on Thursday. He is back to the point where he can field grounders and take batting practice against a pitching machine. Source: Nikkan Sports 1/22/2015
  • Yuki Yanagita weighed ninety-one kilograms at the end of the 2014 season. He currently weighs 97.5 kilograms. Source: Sports Hochi 1/22/2015

Orix Buffaloes

  • Second round draft pick Yuma Mune, seventh round draft pick Masahiro Nishino, and eighth round draft pick Yuya Oda had a chance to take batting practice in front of Ichiro Suzuki on Wednesday. Ichiro let them use his bat and batting gloves. Oda was also able to play catch with the veteran. Source: Daily Sports 1/22/2015, Sponichi 1/22/2015

Nippon Ham Fighters

  • Shohei Otani and Naoyuki Uwasawa left Kamagaya for Okinawa on Thursday morning. They left a day earlier than previously reported. Source: Daily Sports 1/22/2015, Nikkan Sports 1/22/2015
  • Fifth round draft pick Hayao Segawa could get a look as a starting pitcher because they could use a left-handed starter. Hideki Kuriyama confirmed the possibility when he said to reporters, "He was a starter. It's easier to go from rotation to bullpen than the other way around." Source: Nikkan Sports 1/22/2015

Chiba Lotte Marines

  • Sixth round draft pick Atsushi Miyazaki threw forty-two pitches to a half-squatting catcher in the bullpen on Thursday. This was his fourth session of the year. Source: Nikkan Sports 1/22/2015
  • Tadahito Iguchi is slated to attend SoxFest as a member of the 2005 World Series Championship White Sox team. Source: official announcement, Sanspo 1/22/2015
  • Former Marine Shunsuke Watanabe (38) re-signed with the Lancaster Barnstormers. Source: official announcement

Seibu Lions

  • Ryoma Nogami has had problems with his left knee and turned to Platelet Rich Plasma Therapy this off-season. Source: Sponichi 1/22/2015
  • Takayuki Kishi signed a management agreement with Yoshimoto Creative Agency. Source: official announcement

Rakuten Eagles

  • The Eagles are not planning to draw any distinct lines between Ichi-gun and Ni-gun players during the first thirteen days of spring camp. Groups will be set based on need: players that need work (like more running, more throwing, more swinging) will be sent to Nakazato camp and players that show improvement will be sent to Kumejima camp. The lines will become distinct when camp moves to Kin. Source: Nikkan Sports 1/22/2015

[1/21/2015] Softbank Hawks, Orix Buffaloes, Nippon Ham Fighters, Chiba Lotte Marines, Seibu Lions, Rakuten Eagles

by on Jan.22, 2015 @ 1:31 am, under NPB
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Softbank Hawks

  • Daisuke Matsuzaka has kept a low profile during the off-season so far. He turned down national media requests and only agreed to work with local television companies -- one interview per company and with the understanding the footage would be limited to the Fukuoka area. Matsuzaka does not want to be bothered by the media, but was only willing to speak to local media out of respect and appreciation for the fans. Source: ZakZak 1/21/2015
  • The Hawks will be using the Sports Coaching Cam to help break down player movements. The camera is capable of recording at speeds up to 600 frames per second. Source: Daily Sports 1/21/2015

Orix Buffaloes

  • The 2014 draft class had a chance to meet Ichiro Suzuki on Wednesday. Source: Nikkan Sports 1/21/2015
  • The Buffaloes are planning to give Francisco Caraballo (31) another look during spring camp. Caraballo first joined Orix partway through the season in 2010 and was released in 2011. He played for the Gunma Diamond Pegasus the last two seasons and blasted fifty-seven home runs and drove in 150 RBI in 135 games. Source: Sponichi 1/21/2015

Nippon Ham Fighters

Chiba Lotte Marines

  • Seventh round draft pick Naoto Wakimoto recorded the best numbers for leg strength (290 newton meters) and velocity off bat (152km/h) during Tuesday's physical fitness tests. Source: Sponichi 1/21/2015
  • Takahiro Fujioka added more weights to his training routine in December last year. He also changed his diet by eating less fatty meats and more vegetables -- he ended last season at ninety-three kilograms and currently weighs eighty-eight. Source: Daily Sports 1/21/2015

Seibu Lions

Rakuten Eagles

  • The Eagles announced that Kazuo Matsui will be registered as an outfielder this year. They also announced that Yasuhito Uchida will be registered as an infielder. Source: Sponichi 1/21/2015
  • First round draft pick Tomohiro Anraku was assigned to Ichi-gun spring camp during a staff meeting on Wednesday. Source: Daily Sports 1/21/2015
  • Hiromoto Okubo wants to do more running on the base paths. "Players need to get on base to run, so that come first. If players can't do that, then they need to hit .300. And if that's not possible, twenty home runs. That's probably the way it will be," said Okubo. He would like to see players like Matsui, Ryo Hijirisawa, and Makoto Moriyama leading the charge. Source: Daily Sports 1/21/2015

[1/20/2015] Softbank Hawks, Orix Buffaloes, Nippon Ham Fighters, Chiba Lotte Marines, Seibu Lions

by on Jan.21, 2015 @ 2:02 am, under NPB
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Softbank Hawks

  • Fourth round draft pick Shunsuke Kasaya threw fifteen pitches in the bullpen on Tuesday. It was his third session in the last four days. Source: Nikkan Sports 1/20/2015
  • Ren Kajiya threw thirty-seven pitches to a standing catcher in the bullpen on Tuesday. Source: Nikkan Sports 1/20/2015

Orix Buffaloes

  • First round draft pick Sachiya Yamasaki threw twenty-four pitches, including six curves, to a squatting catcher in the bullpen on Tuesday. It was the first time he had the catcher squat this year. Source: Nikkan Sports 1/20/2015 ... Yamasaki threw twenty pitches with the catcher standing and twenty-four with the catcher squatting. He was slated to throw forty pitches in total, but kept throwing because he was not satisfied. Source: Sports Hochi 1/20/2015
  • Ninth round draft pick Yu Suzuki threw about thirty pitches to a squatting catcher on Monday. Source: Daily Sports 1/20/2015

Nippon Ham Fighters

  • Sho Nakata left Japan out of Haneda Airport on Tuesday. He will be training with Total Workout's Kevin Yamazaki in Hawaii until the 30th. Source: Sponichi 1/20/2015, Nikkan Sports 1/20/2015
  • Fourth round draft pick Naoya Ishikawa and sixth round draft pick Shota Tatsuta tossed bullpen sessions to standing catchers at Kamagaya on Tuesday. Both threw about thirty pitches. Source: Daily Sports 1/20/2015
  • Hiroshi Urano threw about forty pitches to a standing catcher in the bullpen on Monday. Source: Sports Hochi 1/20/2015
  • Shohei Otani will be appearing on the cover of Tarzan magazine (February 12, issue 665). He will be the sixth baseball player to grace the cover, first since Kenji Jojima appeared on the March 10 issue in 2004. Source: Sponichi 1/20/2015

Chiba Lotte Marines

  • The 2014 draft class took physical fitness tests on Tuesday. Second round draft pick Eisuke Tanaka's back strength was recorded at 475 newton meters. Source: Nikkan Sports 1/20/2015

Seibu Lions

  • The Lions will begin playing intra-squad games during the third block of spring camp (February 11). They are planning to schedule at least four games. Source: Sponichi 1/20/2015
  • First round draft pick Kona Takahashi threw thirty pitches, all fastballs, to a standing catcher in the bullpen on Tuesday. Source: Sports Hochi 1/20/2015

[1/19/2015] Softbank Hawks, Orix Buffaloes, Nippon Ham Fighters, Chiba Lotte Marines, Seibu Lions, Rakuten Eagles

by on Jan.20, 2015 @ 1:49 am, under NPB
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Softbank Hawks

  • Taiga Kasahara threw forty-five pitches in the bullpen on Monday, twenty to a squatting catcher. It was his third session in as many days. Source: Nikkan Sports 1/19/2015
  • Fifth round draft pick Yosuke Shimabukuro threw twenty-one pitches to a standing catcher in the bullpen on his day off on Sunday. It was his second session this year, first since the 15th. He returned to Tokyo on Monday for college examinations and will rejoin the team on the 22nd. Source: Sponichi 1/19/2015
  • Ayatsugu Yamashita has managed to drop his weight to eighty-eight kilograms, about four less than what he weighed last year. Source: Nikkan Sports 1/19/2015

Orix Buffaloes

  • Fourth round draft pick Ban Takagi threw twenty-four pitches to a standing catcher in the bullpen on Monday. It was his first session of the year. Source: Nikkan Sports 1/19/2015
  • Takahiro Okada worked out with Ichiro Suzuki in Kobe on Monday. Okada has worked out with Ichiro in the past five other times (2008, 2009, 2011, 2013, and 2014). Source: Sports Hochi 1/19/2015, Nikkan Sports 1/19/2015

Nippon Ham Fighters

Chiba Lotte Marines

  • First round draft pick Eisuke Tanaka threw twenty-five pitches to a standing catcher in the bullpen on Sunday. He threw twenty fastballs, followed by four curves, and finished with one last fastball. Tanaka graded his session a sixty percent. Source: Daily Sports 1/19/2015

Seibu Lions

  • The Lions held a staff meeting at a hotel in Tokyo on Monday to discuss spring camp assignments. The 2014 draft class will begin the season at Ni-gun spring camp. Source: Nikkkan Sports 1/19/2015
  • Second round draft pick Yasuo Sano threw thirty pitches, all fastballs, to a standing catcher in the bullpen on Monday. It was his first session since November last year. Source: Nikkan Sports 1/19/2015
  • Tatsuyuki Uemoto took a batted ball off his face while throwing baseballs to Kyohei Nagae during soft-toss batting practice on the 13th. He suffered a chipped tooth and required seven stitches to close a cut. He resumed practices on the 15th. Source: Nikkan Sports 1/19/2015

Rakuten Eagles

  • The 2014 draft class visited the Nikka Whisky distillery in Sendai on Monday. Source: Nikkan Sports 1/19/2015
  • Takahito Otsuka threw thirty pitches to standing catcher in the bullpen on Monday. Source: Sports Hochi 1/19/2015
  • Senior Adviser Senichi Hoshino visited kobo Stadium on Monday and met members of the 2014 draft class. Team staff celebrated his sixty-eighth birthday a few days early by presenting Hoshino with flowers and three bottles of Dom Perignon. Source: Sports Hochi 1/19/2015
  • First round draft pick Tomohiro Anraku will be leaving the team for six days beginning on the 25th to take his high school final examinations. He will rejoin the team in Kumejima on the 31st. Source: Daily Sports 1/19/2015 ... Anraku has reserved places to practices, like Botchan Stadium, while he is away from the team. The Eagles are concerned about the downtime and are hoping it does not delay his training timetable. Source: Sports Hochi 1/19/2015

[1/17/2015] Softbank Hawks, Orix Buffaloes, Seibu Lions, Nippon Ham Fighters

by on Jan.18, 2015 @ 2:48 am, under NPB
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Softbank Hawks

  • Kenji Otonari, Yuya Iida, and Masahiro Harimoto worked out in Uruma, Okinawa on Saturday. Source: Nikkan Sports 1/17/2015

Orix Buffaloes

  • First round draft pick Sachiya Yamasaki likes to take baths in the morning because it helps him loosen up before practices. Source: Nikkan Sports 1/17/2015
  • The coaches and manager met at Hotto Motto Kobe on Saturday to discuss spring camp schedules. Source: Nikkan Sports 1/17/2015
  • The players, staff, and front office personnel held a one-minute moment of silence at 12:00pm on Saturday in honor of the victims of the Great Hanshin Earthquake. Saturday marked the 20th anniversary of the earthquake. Source: Sports Hochi 1/17/2015, Daily Sports 1/17/2015

Seibu Lions

  • Takeya Nakamura, Shogo Akiyama, and Hideto Asamura will most likely be assigned to Ichi-gun spring camp. Nakamura and Akiyama had surgeries on their right elbows. They have resumed hitting practice. Asamura had surgery on his left shoulder. He has not resumed hitting practice, but has been taking fielding practice. Source: Daily Sports 1/17/2015
  • Hotaka Yamakaa weighed as much as 113 kilograms last season. He has managed to drop his weight to 103 kilgorams this off-season. Source: Sports Hochi 1/17/2015

Nippon Ham Fighters

[1/16/2015] Softbank Hawks, Orix Buffaloes, Nippon Ham Fighters, Chiba Lotte Marines, Seibu Lions, Rakuten Eagles

by on Jan.17, 2015 @ 5:00 am, under NPB
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Softbank Hawks

  • Seiichi Uchikawa ordered two new types of bats that are the same basic shape and weight as the one he used last year, but one has a handle that is one millimeter thinner and the other is one millimeter thinner all around and an additional millimeter thinner in the handle. Uchikawa wants to feel more weight in the barrel. Source: Sports Hochi 1/16/2015

Orix Buffaloes

  • First round draft pick Sachiya Yamasaki was slated to throw thirty pitches in the bullpen on Thursday but kept throwing until he hit forty because he was checking his fastball. Yamasaki could be assigned to Ichi-gun spring camp. Source: Daily Sports 1/16/2015

Nippon Ham Fighters

  • Fifth round draft pick Hayao Segawa threw forty pitches, mostly fastballs, in the bullpen on Friday. It was his second session of the year, first since the 14th. Source: Daily Sports 1/16/2015
  • Akihiro Hakumura threw about thirty pitches in the bullpen on Thursday. It was his second session in as many days (he threw fifty pitches on Wednesday). Source: Sports Hochi 1/16/2015

Chiba Lotte Marines

  • Sixth round draft pick Atsushi Miyazaki threw forty pitches, all fastballs, to a standing catcher in the bullpen on Thursday. Fourth round draft pick Kandai Terashima caught the session. Source: Daily Sports 1/16/2015
  • The Marines announced three uniform number updates on Friday: Alfredo Despaigne's number will change from forty-nine to fifty-four. Dae-Eun Rhee's number will be thirty-eight, Kuan-Yu Chen's number will be forty-nine. Source: official announcement

Seibu Lions

  • First round draft pick Kona Takahashi threw forty-one pitches, all fastballs, in the bullpen on Friday. It was his second session of the year, first since the 14th. Source: Sports Hochi 1/16/2015

Rakuten Eagles

  • Takaaki Yokoyama, Ginji, Shintaro Masuda, Motohiro Shima, Shinichiro Koyama, Tetsuro Nishida, Taishi Nakagawa, Yusuke Nishimiya, and Yuri Furukawa worked out in Okinawa on Friday. Source: Nikkan Sports 1/16/2015
  • First round draft pick Tomohiro Anraku's lime green baseball glove has caught the attention of the media in Japan. Source: Daily Sports 1/16/2015 ... Anraku asked Zett to include the color green. He also had the phrase "Kimi Life, Minna-no Tame-ni" stitched inside the glove. "Kimi Life" is the name of a Naoto Inti Raymi song. Source: Nikkan Sports 1/16/2015

[1/15/2015] Orix Buffaloes, Nippon Ham Fighters, Chiba Lotte Marines, Seibu Lions, Rakuten Eagles

by on Jan.16, 2015 @ 2:25 am, under NPB
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Orix Buffaloes

  • Tatsuya Sato threw forty pitches to a standing catcher in the bullpen on Thursday. It was his first session of the year. Source: Daily Sports 1/15/2015

Nippon Ham Fighters

  • Shohei Otani threw forty pitches to a standing catcher in the bullpen on Thursday. Ryo Ishikawa caught the session and jokingly told reporters the last pitch Otani threw was 166km/h. Source: Nikkan Sports 1/15/2015
  • Naoyuki Uwasawa threw fifty pitches to a standing catcher in the bullpen on Wednesday. It was his third session of the year. Uwasawa told reporters the sinker he has been working on is close to being game-ready. Source: Sports Hochi 1/15/2015
  • Takumi Oshima could be assigned to Ichi-gun spring camp because there are not enough catchers. Shota Ono is still having problems with his right elbow, Tomoya Ichikawa is coming off back surgery and will most likely start at Ni-gun spring camp, and Kensuke Kondo will probably see time at third base. Source: Nikkan Sports 1/15/2015
  • Yuki Saito has so far tossed three bullpen sessions this year, each thirty pitches or less. He is trying to pace himself more than last year. Source: Daily Sports 1/15/2015
  • The Ishikawa Million Stars (BC League) announced that they signed former Fighter Hitoshi Tadano (34) to a player/pitching coach contract. Source: official announcement

Chiba Lotte Marines

  • Kota Futaki threw forty pitches to a standing catcher in the bullpen on Thursday. It was his second session in as many days and second session of the year. Source: Nikkan Sports 1/15/0215
  • Second round draft pick Eisuke Tanaka is planning to toss a bullpen some time before the end of the month. Source: Nikkan Sports 1/15/2015
  • Toshiaki Imae added Pilates to his training routine last fall (two or three times a week, ninety to 120 minutes per lesson). He is hoping it will help with his back problems by strengthening his core muscles. He has also replaced sweets and junk food with dried fruits. Source: Daily Sports 1/15/2015, Nikkan Sports 1/15/2015, Sanspo 1/15/2015

Seibu Lions

  • Chun-Lin Kuo tossed thirty-one pitches (all fastballs) to a standing catcher in the bullpen on Thursday. He threw from the set position at about sixty percent. Source: Nikkan Sports 1/15/2015
  • Senior Director Hisanobu Watanabe does not think first round draft pick Kona Takahashi needs to throw anything other than the fastballs during his bullpen sessions right now. Source: Sports Hochi 1/15/2015, Sponichi 1/15/2015

Rakuten Eagles

[1/14/2015] Softbank Hawks, Nippon Ham Fighters, Seibu Lions, Rakuten Eagles

by on Jan.15, 2015 @ 3:10 am, under NPB
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Softbank Hawks

  • Ikusei eighth round draft pick Keigo Nakamura tossed a bullpen session with a squatting catcher on Wednesday. He also tossed a session on Tuesday. Source: Nikkan Sports 1/14/2015

Nippon Ham Fighters

  • Yuki Saito threw thirty pitches to a standing catcher in the bullpen on Wednesday. It was his third session of the year. Source: Daily Sports 1/14/2015, Sports Hochi 1/14/2015
  • First round draft pick Kohei Arihara played catch at a distance of about forty meters on Wednesday. He is still taking things slow because of the discomfort he felt in his right elbow. Source: Daily Sports 1/14/2015

Seibu Lions

  • First round draft pick Kona Takahashi threw thirty-three pitches, all fastballs, two a standing catch on Wednesday. It was his first session of the year (first since mid-December 2014). Source: Sports Hochi 1/14/2015
  • According to Sanspo, Takashi Toritani may have been interested in signing with the Lions when Hiroyuki Nakajima decided to head to the Majors. Toritani is from the Kanto area and went to high school in Saitama and college in Tokyo. He may have been open to the idea of playing closer to home, but Seibu never really checked. Source: Sanspo 1/14/2015

Rakuten Eagles

  • First round draft pick Tomohiro Anraku could toss a bullpen session sometime after the 21st. Source: Nikkan Sports 1/14/2015