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[11/30/2013] Shinya Tsuruoka to sign with the Softbank Hawks

by on Nov.30, 2013 @ 4:28 pm, under NPB
Tags: ,

Shinya Tsuruoka held a press conference in Sapporo today and informed the media that he plans to sign with the Softbank Hawks.

"They made me feel needed.  I had a difficult time making this choice, but I decided I want to start over from scratch with a new team," Tsuruoka said.  "I experienced a lot of things during my eleven years with Nippon Ham.  I cannot even begin to put into words how grateful I am to the [Nippon Ham] organization and the fans."

Source: NHK 11/30/2013, Daily Sports 11/30/2013

[UPDATE 12/7 @ 8:50pm]

The Hawks held a press conference for Tsuruoka today.  He was assigned the number eight.  He agreed to a four-year deal worth an estimated maximum 500 million yen plus incentives.

Source: Nikkan Sports 12/7/2013

[UPDATE 12/7 @ 10:40pm]

According to Sports Hochi, the four-year deal is worth 250 to 500 million plus incentives.

Source: Sports Hochi 12/7/2013

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[11/25/2013] Yasuyuki Kataoka, Kenichi Nakata, Kan Otake, Shinya Tsuruoka

by on Nov.26, 2013 @ 7:26 am, under NPB
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Kenichi Nakata told reporters on Monday that he was still thinking about where he wanted to play next season.  He has received offers from the Softbank Hawks, Hanshin Tigers, and Yakult Swallows.  Each of the teams have been in touch with Nakata since initial discussions.

Source: Sports Hochi 11/25/2013

===

Shinya Tsuruoka plans to make an announcement of his decision either later this month or early next month.

Source: Sponichi 11/26/2013

===

The Hiroshima Carp are thinking about selecting a player and money as compensation for losing Kan Otake to the Yomiuri Giants.  They will make a final decision after seeing which players are available.

Source: Sponichi 11/26/2013

===

Yasuyuki Kataoka was in Kawasaki on Sunday getting a team physical.

Source: Sponichi 11/25/2013

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[11/20/2013] FA Rumors: Kataoka, Kubo, Nakata, Tsuruoka, Wakui

by on Nov.21, 2013 @ 1:47 am, under NPB
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Softbank Hawks

Shinya Tsuruoka told reporters after his meeting with the Hawks on Tuesday that he was prepared to live away from his family in Sapporo for one year, but ultimately hoped they would follow.

The Hawks may have offered the free agent a four-year deal worth 400 million yen plus incentives.

Source: Daily Sports 11/20/2013

Or a four-year deal worth 500 milllion yen plus incentives.

Tsuruoka recalled watching a Hawks game in Fukuoka when he was a junior high school student and said he was happy to receive an offer from the team.  He also attended a tryout with the Hawks when he played for the Industrial League Mitsubishi Juko Yokohama team.

Source: Sports Hochi 11/20/2013

Or a three-year deal worth a total 300 million yen.

Source: Sanspo 11/20/2013

"I know [Kyushu] but my wife is from Sapporo.  They were concerned about my family and asked if I might be worried about moving.  For now, I will live away from my family for a year.  Hopefully, they will move at some point," Tsuruoka said during a press conference after negotiations with Softbank on Tuesday.

Source: Tokyo Sports 11/20/2013

Tsuruoka's wife is pregnant with the couple's third child.  She is due to deliver in January next year.

Source: Nikkan Sports 11/20/2013

Chiba Lotte Marines

If things go well, Hideaki Wakui and the Marines could arrive at an agreement during their next meeting.  Contract specifics were not discussed during the first meeting on Tuesday, but Lotte could offer the free agent a two-year deal worth 440 million yen plus incentives when the two sides meet again.

Source: Daily Sports 11/20/2013

Three officials met Wakui on Tuesday: Iekuni Nakamura (president), Nobuhira Hayashi (director), and Naoki Matsumoto (baseball operations).

Source: Sponichi 11/20/2013

The meeting took place around lunch time, but it was not conducted over lunch, just a cup of coffee that cost about 1,000 yen and some water.

Source: Sanspo 11/20/2013

ZakZak wonders if the addition of Wakui this year will lead to the departure of Yoshihisa Naruse next year (Naruse is slated to earn his domestic FA option in 2014).

Source: ZakZak 11/20/2013

Orix Buffaloes

The Buffaloes may have offered Yasuyuki Kataoka a four-year deal worth over 500 million yen.

Source: Daily Sports 11/20/2013

Or a three-year deal worth 500 million yen.

Source: Sports Hochi 11/20/2013

Or a three-year deal worth over 500 million yen.

Source: Nikkan Sports 11/20/2013

Team director Ryuzo Setoyama told reporters on Wednesday that they offered Kataoka a multi-year deal and told him they wanted to make him their every day second baseman.

Source: Sports Hochi 11/20/2013

Yomiuri Giants

The Giants spoke to Ryota Katsuki about the number seventeen and received the ok sign to give it Kan Otake.  Yomiuri could offer Otake a three-year deal worth a maximum 500 million yen (includes signing bonus and incentives).

Otake may have received a four-year deal worth one billion yen from Softbank and a three-year deal worth 600 million yen from Rakuten.

Source: Sponichi 11/20/2013

Team officials met Otake at a hotel in Hiroshima on Wednesday.  They may have offered the free agent a three-year deal worth over 500 million yen.  The meeting lasted about ninety minutes.

Source: Daily Sports 11/20/2013

Tatsunori Hara spoke to Otake over the phone during the meeting.

Source: Sponichi 11/20/203

Yakult Swallows

The Swallows met Kenichi Nakata in Nagoya on Wednesday and told him they wanted him to become the next pitcher to wear the number seventeen, a number the Swallows feel is their "ace" number.  Nakata also had a chance to speak to Junji Ogawa over the phone.

Source: Sports Hochi 11/20/2013

The meeting took place at a Chinese food restaurant.  There were eight dishes.  The price per person was about 12,000 yen.

Source: Nikkan Sports 11/20/2013

The Swallows may have offered Nakata a four-year deal worth 500 million yen (includes incentives).

Source: Sanspo 11/20/2013

Hanshin Tigers

The media learned on Tuesday that Yutaka Wada had called Kenichi Nakata on the phone before Hanshin officials met him in Nagoya on the 17th.  The call only lasted a few minutes, but Wada made sure Nakata knew just how much he was needed.

Source: Daily Sports 11/20/2013

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The Tigers may have offered Yasutomo Kubo a two-year deal with a 2014 salary of 120 million yen.  Kubo made an estimated 120 million yen this year.  Hanshin originally planned to cut his salary, but "sweetened" their offer by keeping it at the same level as this year.

Source: Daily Sports 11/20/203

Or they offered a two-year deal worth 250 million yen, which could be up from a two-year 200 million yen deal they proposed before Kubo decided to exercise his FA option.

Source: Nikkan Sports 11/20/2013

Yokohama Bay Stars

The Bay Stars plan to keep negotiations with Yasutomo Kubo private.

Source: Daily Sports 11/20/2013

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[11/19/2013] FA Rumors: Kataoka, Kubo, Nakata, Otake, Tsuruoka, Wakui

by on Nov.20, 2013 @ 2:29 am, under NPB
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Yomiuri Giants

The Giants announced that they will meet Kan Otake in Hiroshima on the 20th.

Yomiuri is looking for a fourth pitcher to follow Tetsuya Utsumi, Tomoyuki Sugano, and Toshiya Sugiuchi in the starting rotation.  Daily Sports believes Yomiuri could become Otake's first choice because he wants to play closer to his home town in Saitama.

Source: Daily Sports 11/19/2013Daily Sports 11/19/2013

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The Giants may back off Kenichi Nakata since they feel there is a good chance he will end up with Softbank.  For the time being, they will most likely focus all their efforts on Otake.

Source: Sponichi 11/19/2013

Yakult Swallows

The Swallows are scheduled to meet Kenichi Nakata in Nagoya on the 20th.

Source: Sports Hochi 11/19/2013

Hanshin Tigers

Kenichi Nakata spoke to Daily Sports on Monday and said that he had a difficult time sleeping after meeting the Tigers on Sunday because he was so excited about what they told him.  The Tigers offered the free agent the number eighteen and what may have been a four-year deal worth 500 million yen.  They also told him that they wanted his help in taking down the Yomiuri Giants.

Nakata also said he was having a difficult time trying to figure out where he wanted to play because the Hawks offered a solid deal as well.  He still has to meet with the Yakult Swallows before making a final decision.  He plans to use the rest of the month to sort through his options and hopes to make some sort of an announcement early next month.

Source: Daily Sports 11/19/2013

===

Yasutomo Kubo met the Tigers at the team offices in Hyogo on Tuesday for about thirty minutes.  When speaking to reporters, Kubo admitted Hanshin sweetened their initial offer and that he felt wanted by the team.  He said he did not want to take too much time in making his decision because he knew teams had to make decisions on other players for the 2014 season.

GM Katsuhiro Nakamura was not really sure how to feel about negotiations.  He said he apologized to the free agent for trying to convert him to a closer this past season because he was not sure if it was a good decision.

Source: Daily Sports 11/19/2013, Daily Sports 11/19/2013

While Kubo would like to start, his biggest concern is whether or not he will be given the opportunity to pitch.  The Tigers were relieved to hear that he was not stuck on starting.

Source: Sanspo 11/19/2013

Yokohama Bay Stars

Kiyoshi Nakahata is more than willing to help the team recruit Yasutomo Kubo during negotiations.

Source: Daily Sports 11/19/2013

Softbank Hawks

Shinya Tsuruoka met the Hawks at a hotel in Sapporo on Tuesday.  Their meeting lasted about an hour.  The Hawks are considered to be the front-runners.

Source: Sanspo 11/19/2013

The Hawks may have offered Tsuruoka a four-year deal worth 500 million yen plus incentives.

Source: Sports Hochi 11/19/2013

Rakuten Eagles

The Eagles may have offered Kan Otake three years at 500 million yen.

Source: Daily Sports 11/19/2013

Or a three-year deal between 500 and 700 million yen.

Source: Sanspo 11/19/2013

Chiba Lotte Marines

Team officials met Hideaki Wakui at a hotel in Tokyo on Tuesday.  Specific terms were not discussed, but Lotte did tell Wakui they wanted to use him as a starting pitcher.  They also gave the free agent a message from Tsutomu Ito.

Source: Daily Sports 11/19/2013

The Marines could be preparing a base two-year deal worth a total 600 million yen.

Source: Sanspo 11/19/2013

Or a two-year deal worth 440 million yen plus incentives.  The Marines only see Wakui as a starter.

Source: Sponichi 11/19/2013

Orix Buffaloes

The Buffaloes met Yasuyuki Kataoka in Tokyo on Tuesday.  Talks between the two sides lasted about an hour and forty minutes.  Kataoka seemed pleased with how discussions went and said he needed more time to think.

Source: Sponichi 11/19/2013

Kataoka may have been offered a three-year deal worth over 500 million yen.

Source: Nikkan Sports 11/19/2013

===

Orix may have offered Katsuki Yamazaki a three-year deal worth 150 million yen.

Source: Sports Hochi 11/19/2013

The Buffaloes will likely meet Yamazaki again on the 25th.  If things go well, the organization might be able to make an announcement shortly thereafter.

Source: Sponichi 11/20/2013

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[11/18/2013] FA Rumors: Kataoka, Nakata, Ogasawara, Otake, Tsuruoka, Wakui, Yamazaki

by on Nov.19, 2013 @ 2:41 am, under NPB
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Softbank Hawks

The Hawks may have offered Kenichi Nakata a four-year deal at 500 million yen plus, Kan Otake a four-year at a maximum 700 million yen, and may offer Shinya Tsuruoka a three- to four-year deal.

Since no other teams are rumored to be interested in Tsuruoka, primarily because everyone know he wants to play close to home, there is a chance he signs a deal on the same day he meets the Hawks for the first time on the 19th.

Source: Daily Sports 11/18/2013

Rakuten Eagles

The Eagles met Kan Otake at a hotel in Hiroshima on Monday.  They may have offered the free agent a multi-year deal.  Team president Yozo Tachibana told reporters their offer may not have been as high as other teams and that they had to rely on their enthusiasm.

Source: Daily Sports 11/18/2013

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Yasuyuki Kataoka met the Eagles at a hotel in Tokyo on Sunday. He may have been offered a four-year deal at around 500 million yen.

Source: Daily Sports 11/18/2013

Or three years at over 450 million yen.  If Kataoka signs with the team, Senichi Hoshino plans to make him an everyday player.

The icebreaker: the Eagles prepared cola and ice coffee for negotiations.  Kataoka was drinking the ice coffee and his class was beginning to run low.  Chief scout Hiroshi Abei accidentally poured cola into the glass and helped ease the tension.

Source: Sponichi 11/18/2013, Sponichi 11/18/2013, Sponichi 11/18/2013

Or three years at a maximum 500 million yen.

Source: Sports Hochi 11/18/2013

Or three years at over 500 million yen.

Source: Nikkan Sports 11/18/2013

Negotiations took place at a hotel operated by Seibu Holdings.

Source: Tokyo Sports 11/18/2013

Tokyo Sports notes that the Eagles might have a good shot at signing Kataoka because of his rumored relationship with Fuji TV announcer Ayako Kato.  While the relationship was initially said to be good for the Yomiuri Giants because Kato does not want to leave the Kanto region, the connections team president Yozo Tachibana and manager Senichi Hoshino have with members of the media and various talento could tip the scales in favor of the Eagles.

Source: Tokyo Sports 11/18/2013

Sanspo points out that the Eagles may have a difficult time signing Kataoka because they already have Kazuo Matsui and Kazuya Fujita at second and short.  Kataoka wants playing time and might have an easier go at securing an everyday position with one of the other teams teams that are interested in him (Yomiuri, Chunichi, and Orix).

Source: Sanspo 11/18/2013

Chiba Lotte Marines

The Marines announced on Monday that they will meet Hideaki Wakui in Tokyo on Tuesday. Team president Iekuni Nakamura and team director Nobuhira Hayashi are expected to attend.

Source: Nikkan Sports 11/18/2013

The Marines could offer Wakui a four-year deal at 440 million yen plus incentives.

Source: Sponichi 11/18/2013

Orix Buffaloes

The Buffaloes met Katsuki Yamazaki in Fukuoka on Monday.  Orix likely offered the free agent catcher a multi-year deal.

Yamazaki told reporters after negotiations that he received a good offer and that he felt positive about the way things went.

Orix is also planning to meet Yasuyuki Kataoka.

Source: Daily Sports 11/18/2013, Sports Hochi 11/18/2013, Nikkan Sports 11/18/2013

===

The Buffaloes may be preparing to offer Kataoka a three-year deal, similar to what the Eagles may have offered.

Source: Sponichi 11/18/2013

Hanshin Tigers

The Tigers met Kenichi Nakata on Sunday. Their meeting took place at a Chinese food restaurant and lasted about ninety minutes. Nakata appeared fairly happy with negotiations and told reporters their offer was very good (said to include the number eighteen and a four-year deal at 500 million yen plus).

Source: Daily Sports 11/18/2013

Or four years at about 600 million yen.

Source: Nikkan Sports 11/18/2013

Or four years at 700 million yen.  The Hawks' offer may have been four years at 500 million yen with 200 million yen in incentives.

Source: Sports Hochi 11/18/2013

Or four years at a maximum one billion yen.

Things that could help the Tigers: fourteen players and coaches are from the Kyushu area and could help Nakata make a smooth transition to living in Kansai; the team hospital for the pitching staff is located in Fukuoka.

Source: Tokyo Sports 11/18/2013

According to Sponichi, while the Hawks may have offered a four-year deal worth a maximum one billion yen, a large part is tied up in incentives.  The yearly base salary the Tigers may have offered (four years at 600 million yen), may not be too far from Softbank's base figure.

Source: Sponichi 11/18/2013

GM Katsuhiro Nakamura told reporters he felt it was fifty-fifty with Nakata.

Source: Sanspo 11/18/2013

Yomiuri Giants

The Giants are said to be interested in free agents Kan Otake, Kenichi Nakata, and Yasuyuki Kataoka.  However, they may be stalling a bit because they are already looking ahead at the list of possible free agents from next year and are trying to figure out just how much they should spend this winter.  All three players are being courted by teams with fairly deep pockets and the Giants may not want to overspend this year and miss out on some of the names that could hit the free agent market next year.

Source: Tokyo Sports 11/18/2013

===

Michihiro Ogasawara has still not received any phone calls from teams interested in signing him.

Source: Nikkan Sports 11/18/2013

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[11/17/2013] FA Rumors: Kataoka, Kubo, Nakata, Otake, Tsuruoka

by on Nov.17, 2013 @ 11:59 pm, under NPB
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Hanshin Tigers

Kenichi Nakata met the Tigers at a hotel in Nagoya today.  They reportedly offered him the number eighteen and told him of their plans to use him as a starter.

Nakata met with Softbank on the 15th.  He told reporters today he received a phone call from the Yakult Swallows.

Source: Daily Sports 11/17/2013

The Tigers were initially planning to offer Nakata a four-year deal at about 400 million yen, but may have pushed the total package to 500 million after they decided to give up on Shinya Tsuruoka.  They may have also given the free agent re-assurances about life after retirement, living in Kansai, and what the organization can do for his mother living along in Kitakyushu (his father passed away six years ago).

Nakata could make an announcement of where he wants to play some time next week.

Source: Daily Sports 11/17/2013

The Tigers may have offered a four-year deal worth a maximum of about one billion yen.  Team president Eiichi Takano, GM Katsuhiro Nakamura, and assistant GM Satoshi Shimamura were at the meeting.

Source: Nikkan Sports 11/17/2013

If Nakata has a particular preference for mound types, the Koshien Stadium grounds crew are willing to make the adjustments, so long as the requests are within reason (and within the rules).  They have asked other pitchers on the staff, like Randy Messenger and Atsushi Nomi, for requests.

Source: Sanspo 11/17/2013

===

Yasutomo Kubo plans to sit down with Hanshin before meeting other teams.  The Tigers have already made it known that they plan to use him as a starter next season.  They may have also offered him a two-year deal.

Source: Daily Sports 11/17/2013

Kubo is planning four things: 1) his agent will handle all negotiations; 2) negotiations will begin with Hanshin, after that, he is open to talking to any of the NPB teams; 3) he does not care if he starts or relieves, he just wants to pitch and help his team win; and 4) he will attend the Tigers' Fan Appreciation Day on the 23rd.

Source: Sponichi 11/17/2013

Softbank Hawks

The Hawks met with Kan Otake in Hiroshima on Saturday.  Their meeting lasted about eighty minutes.  They may have offered him a four-year deal worth a maximum 700 million yen.  The organization is willing to let him do his own thing to prepare for the 2014 season, out of concern for his right shoulder -- he knows best what he needs to do.

Otake is scheduled to meet Rakuten on the 18th.

Source: Daily Sports 11/17/2013

Or four years at a maximum 800 million yen.

Source: Nikkan Sports 11/17/2013

Or four years at a maximum one billion yen.  Incidentally, Hiroshima offered him a one-year deal worth 140 million yen plus incentives.

Source: Sports Hochi 11/17/2013

Sponichi is also reporting four years at a maximum one billion yen.

Source: Sponichi 11/17/2013

===

The Hawks will meet Shinya Tsuruoka in Sapporo on the 19th.

Source: Sponichi 11/17/2013

Rakuten Eagles

Yasuyuki Kataoka met team officials at a hotel in Tokyo today.  The meeting lasted about 100 minutes.  He was reportedly offered a multi-year deal.

Source: Daily Sports 11/17/2013

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[11/15/2013] FA Rumors: Kataoka, Nakata, Ogasawara, Otake, Tsuruoka, Wakui, Yamazaki

by on Nov.15, 2013 @ 11:54 pm, under NPB
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Kenichi Nakata on becoming a free agent: "I would like to sit down with different kinds of teams.  There will, no doubt, be a lot to think about, but there is more to look forward to than to be worried about.  I think I will play for the team that makes me want to play for them."

Source: Daily Sports 11/15/2013

Nakata threw about ninety pitches in the bullpen at Nagoya Stadium on Thursday.

Source: Sponichi 11/15/2013

===

Kan Otake is not sure how many teams will contact him, but he plans to sit down with each and every one.

Source: Sponichi 11/15/2013

=======

Orix Buffaloes

Team director Ryuzo Setoyama told reporters on Thursday they were interested in all free agent players.  However, they may be particularly interested in Yamazaki -- he can provide Hikaru Ito with some friendly competition.

Source: Nikkan Sports 11/15/2013

Softbank Hawks

The Hawks met Nakata at a hotel in Nagoya today.  Their meeting lasted about ninety minutes.  They may have offered the free agent a three- to four-year deal.

"They said a lot of good things about me.  Their offer was based on performance. ... I was more interested in things like the environment and what it is like living in Fukuoka, than the terms of the deal," Nakata said about his discussions with the Hawks.

He also said that the Hanshin Tigers contacted him today.

Source: Nikkan Sports 11/15/2013, Nikkan Sports 11/15/2013

The Hawks are scheduled to meet Okate in Hiroshima on Saturday.

Source: Nikkan Sports 11/15/2013

Chiba Lotte Marines

The Marines could offer Wakui a two year deal worth 600 million yen.

Source: Sports Hochi 11/15/2013

Rakuten Eagles

The Eagles are scheduled to meet Kataoka on the 17th.

Source: Sponichi 11/15/2013

Yakult Swallows

The Swallows are planning to move quickly on Nakata and may have given him a call today.

Source: Sponichi 11/15/2013

Nakata is likely the only free agent player the Swallows are targeting this winter.

Source: Sanspo 11/15/2013

Yokohama Bay Stars

The Bay Stars may have given Kubo a phone call today to let him know of their interest.  Actual negotiations will likely begin some time after GM Shigeru Takada returns from Amami Oshima on the 17th.

The Bay Stars could offer Kubo a two-year deal worth an estimated maximum 300 million yen.  The Hanshin Tigers are thinking about raising their initial offer to keep the pitcher from leaving.

Source: Sponichi 11/15/2013, Sponichi 11/15/2013

Yokohama would like to sign at least one of the four pitchers on the free agent market.  They have their eye on Kubo and Nakata.

Source: Sanspo 11/15/2013

Chunichi Dragons

The Dragons only plan to release information about negotiations with free agents once terms are finalized.

Source: Sponichi 11/15/2013

They are said to be interested in Kataoka, Yamazaki, and Ogasawara.

Source: Nikkan Sports 11/15/2013

Hanshin Tigers

The Tigers could go four years with Nakata because they will probably lose two starters (Jason Standridge and Yasutomo Kubo) this winter.

Source: Daily Sports 11/15/2013Daily Sports 11/15/2013

The Tigers will try to woo Nakata with a multi-year deal, a spot in the starting rotation, and the uniform number seventeen (unless there is another number he wants).  Softbank, Yakult, Yomiuri, and Orix are also said to be interested.

Source: Nikkan Sports 11/15/2013

The Tigers could offer Nakata the number eighteen.  Softbank, Yomiuri, Yakult, and Yokohama are reportedly interested.

Source: Sanspo 11/15/2013

The Tigers have reportedly given up on Tsuruoka because they learned he wants to play closer to home.  They are scheduled to meet Nakata in Nagoya on the 17th.

Source: Sponichi 11/15/2013

Yomiuri Giants

The Giants are reportedly interested in Nakata, Otake, and Kataoka.  Tatsunori Hara is prepared to help the team with negotiations.

Source: Daily Sports 11/15/2013

=======

See also:

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[11/14/2013] FA Rumors: Nakata, Tsuruoka, Otake, Yamazaki, Wakui, Kataoka, Kubo

by on Nov.14, 2013 @ 11:58 pm, under NPB
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The Softbank Hawks are expected to sit down with Kenichi Nakata, Shinya Tsuruoka, and Kan Otake.

Source: Daily Sports 11/14/2013, Sponichi 11/14/2013

The Hawks could offer Otake a four year deal worth a maximum one billion yen.

Source: Sports Hochi 11/14/2013

ZakZak reports that Tsuruoka will most likely choose Softbank over Hanshin because he wants to be closer to his home town in Kagoshima.  They also mention that the Orix Buffaloes are probably looking at Katsuki Yamazaki as a back-up catcher to Hikaru Ito.

Source: ZakZak 11/14/2013

===

The Chiba Lotte Marines may end up being the only team that sits down with Hideaki Wakui.  The Rakuten Eagles were said to have some interest early on, but may have narrowed their choices down to Otake and Yasuyuki Kataoka.

Source: Sponichi 11/14/2013

The Marines could meet with Wakui some time early next week.

Source: Nikkan Sports 11/14/2013

===

The Yakult Swallows could offer Nakata the number seventeen, if he wants it.  The Hanshin Tigers are thinking about offering him a four-year deal.

Source: Sponichi 11/14/2013

===

The Yokohama Bay Stars would like to sign at least one of the four pitchers that decided to exercise their FA options.  Yasutomo Kubo may be their top choice.  They plan to move quickly.

Source: Daily Sports 11/14/2013Daily Sports 11/14/2013, Sponichi 11/14/2013

===

Hanshin Tigers' manager Yutaka Wada spoke to Kubo a number of times and told him he planned to use him as a starter next year.  Wada hopes he decides to stay.

Source: Daily Sports 11/14/2013

===

The Yomiuri Giants could try to sign both Otake and Kataoka.  The front office was not always targeting Kataoka because they felt there were enough internal options, but Tatsunori Hara may have told team officials during a meeting on the 8th that he wanted more stability at second.

Source: Tokyo Sports 11/14/2013

Tokyo Sports mentions a rumor that could have an effect on Kataoka's decision.  They published a report last month about the infielder's possible relationship with Fuji TV announcer Ayako Kato.  The paper heard from someone close to the situation that Kato told Kataoka that if he decides to leave the Lions, she wanted it to be for the Giants.

Source: Tokyo Sports 11/14/2013

The Hawks are said to be the front-runner for Nakata's services because are close to his home town and have deep pockets, but the Giants are still said to be interested.

Source: Sponichi 11/14/2013

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[11/13/2013] Yasutomo Kubo, Kan Otake, Shinya Tsuruoka

by on Nov.13, 2013 @ 11:37 pm, under NPB
Tags: , , , ,

Yasutomo Kubo

  • The Yokohama Bay Stars are looking into Kubo.  They see him as a starter and could quickly become front-runners for his services. [Daily Sports 11/13/2013]

Kan Otake

  • Otake met with the Carp four times.  He may have been offered a one-year deal worth 150 million yen and a three-year deal worth 400 million yen during his second meeting with the team.  Otake told reporters at the time he was not satisfied with the team's offer.  That may have changed during the next round of negotiations since the righty said he was happy with the terms and the money.  However, he still opted to exercise his FA option after meeting the team for the fourth time on Tuesday because a part of him was interested in testing the market and playing in a new environment. [Daily Sports 11/13/2013]
  • The Softbank Hawks are planning to sit down with Otake and could offer him a multi-year deal. [Daily Sports 11/13/2013] ... Softbank has offered three- to four-year deals to woo free agents in the past, they could do the same with Otake. [Nikkan Sports 11/13/2013]
  • According to Tokyo Sports, the Yomiuri Giants, Hawks, and Rakuten Eagles could all approach Otake.  People with Hiroshima feel he will choose Yomiuri because he wants to move back to Tokyo and be closer to his home town in Saitama.  He is also said to be close to Takahiro Aoki, a former teammate that was traded to the Giants this season. [Tokyo Sports 11/13/2013]
  • Sports Hochi notes that Otake might be interested in the Hawks. [Sports Hochi 11/13/2013]
  • Sponichi also believes Yomiuri is the front runner based on rumors that Otake wants to play for a team closer to his home town in Saitama. [Sponichi 11/13/2013]

Shinya Tsuruoka

Softbank Hawks

  • The Hawks could go after three free agents this winter: Kan Otake, Kenichi Nakata, and Shinya Tsuruoka. [Sponichi 11/13/2013]
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[11/11/2013] Rumors: Kenichi Nakata, Michihiro Ogasawara, Shinya Tsuruoka

by on Nov.12, 2013 @ 2:22 am, under NPB
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Kenichi Nakata - Class C Free Agent
Shinya Tsuruoka - Class B Free Agent

  • According to Sanspo, the Tigers have narrowed down their targets to Nakata and Tsuruoka.  The coaching staff has asked the front office for one or two more starters.  Nakata is the most appealing because he is a class C free agent and will not require any compensation to sign.  A number of other teams, including Softbank and Yakult, are also expected to approach Nakata.  The Tigers were also considering Softbank's Katsuki Yamazaki, but are more interested in Tsuruoka for his experience, which also includes working with Yu Darvish. [Sanspo 11/11/2013]

Michihiro Ogasawara - Class C Free Agent

  • The Yomiuri Giants thought about releasing Ogasawara, but felt that was not the appropriate way for an established and well-liked veteran to depart from the team.  They were open to trading him, but he ultimately opted for free agency instead. [Daily Sports 11/11/2013]
  • The Chunichi Dragons are interested in Ogasawara and could offer him a deal worth about twenty million yen (down from the seventy million he made this past season). [Daily Sports 11/11/2013]
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