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[3/15/2014] CL Injury Updates: Shigeru Kaga (Yokohama), Mauro Gomez (Hanshin)

by on Mar.15, 2014 @ 11:54 pm, under NPB
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Yomiuri Giants

  • Kan Otake (lower-half tightness) threw 100 pitches in the bullpen on Friday (he threw all his pitches and also set situations).  He was scheduled to throw seventy, but kept going because he could.  Source: Tokyo Sports 3/15/2014, Sanspo 3/15/2014
  • Nobutaka Imamura (left shoulder) pitched in a Ni-gun game against Seibu today.  He entered the game in the 7th and tossed two shutout innings.  He gave up two hits, struck out three, and topped out at 146km/h.  He celebrated his twentieth birthday.  Source: Nikkan Sports 3/15/2014, Sponichi 3/15/2014

Hanshin Tigers

  • Takumi Akiyama started a Kyoiku League game against Chunichi on Saturday.  There was some concern about his condition, since he took a batted ball off the area near his right elbow during practices on the 9th, but he showed no ill effects.  He gave up one hit in four shutout innings and struck out four.  Source: Nikkan Sports 3/15/2014
  • Mauro Gomez (right knee) recorded a double and a home run during a batting practice scrimmage on Friday.  He also took thirty-eight swings during batting practice and hit nine over the fence.  Source: Nikkan Sports 3/15/2014 ... Gomez played in Saturday's Kyoiku League game against Chunichi.  He was the starting designated hitter and batted third.  He went 1-for-2: Shinji Iwata on the mound, runner on first and one out in the 1st - 1B8; in the 3rd - HBP; 5th round draft pick Daisuke Sobue, runner on third and two out in the 4th - F8.  Source: Nikkan Sports 3/15/2014, Daily Sports 3/15/2014

Yokohama Bay Stars

  • Tony Blanco did not play in Saturday's exhibition game against Hanshin because of back tightness.  Source: Sponichi 3/15/2014
  • Shigeru Kaga was scratched from his start against Hanshin on Saturday because of tightness in his right elbow.  He was examined at a hospital in Yokohama on Friday before doing some light workouts at Yokohama Stadium.  He could pitch in a game some time next week.  Source: Sponichi 3/15/2014
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[3/10/2014] Injury Updates: Takumi Akiyama, Mauro Gomez (HAN), Wily Mo Pena (ORI)

by on Mar.11, 2014 @ 12:31 am, under NPB
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Hanshin Tigers

  • Takumi Akiyama took a batted ball off his right arm during workouts on Sunday (he was standing in foul territory on the first base side during batting practice).  He was scratched from his start against Yomiuri on Monday as a precaution.  Source: Sanspo 3/10/2014
  • Mauro Gomez (right knee) took twenty-eight swings (forty-three pitches) during batting practice at Naruohama on Monday and recorded six could-be hits, including two that went over the fence.  Hiroya Shimamoto was the batting practice pitcher.  Source: Sanpso 3/10/2014Nikkan Sports 3/10/2014, Daily Sports 3/10/2014 ... Gomez could be the designated hitter in Saturday's (March 15) Kyoiku League game against Chunichi.  Source: Sponichi 3/10/2014

Yakult Swallows

  • Junji Ogawa told reporters on Monday that Shohei Tateyama (right elbow) will not be ready for the start of the regular season.  Ogawa is hoping Tateyama will be able to make it back in May.  Source: Sponichi 3/10/2014

Orix Buffaloes

  • Wily Mo Pena told Tokyo Sports he was informed during a hospital visit that he would require about a month for a full recovery from his right side injury.  "I just started swinging the bat at forty to fifty percent.  If I am feeling good, I can start taking batting practice soon and work on my swing.  After that, I would like to play in some Ni-gun games," said Pena.  Source: Tokyo Sports 3/10/2014
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[1/18/2014] Hanshin Tigers News and Notes

by on Jan.18, 2014 @ 11:55 pm, under NPB
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Ryoma Matsuda tossed thirty pitches to a squatting catcher today.  He threw fastballs, curves, and sliders.

Matsuda tossed ten pitches to a squatting catcher on the 16th.  Today's session was his second with a squatting catcher.

Source: Daily Sports 1/18/2014, Nikkan Sports 1/18/2014

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Shintaro Fujinami threw about twenty pitches to a squatting catcher today.  He mixed in sliders, two-seamers, and change-ups.  He told reporters he was at only about thirty to forty percent.

Source: Nikkan Sports 1/18/2014

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1st round draft pick Yuta Iwasada was taken to the hospital on Thursday with a fever of 37.2 degrees Celsius.  It got worse on Friday and the Tigers played it safe by taking him in for another examination.

Source: Sanspo 1/18/2014Daily Sports 1/18/2014

Iwasada missed workouts again today.  It is uncertain if he will be ready for practices on Sunday.

Source: Nikkan Sports 1/18/2014

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4th round draft pick Ryutaro Umeno caught Hiroaki Saiuchi's bullpen session today.  When Umeno moved into the team dormitory, he unpacked four different colored catcher's mitts -- blue, reddish black, brown, and orange.  He used the orange mitt today.

Source: Nikkan Sports 1/18/2014

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6th round draft pick Suguru Iwasaki read about Yu Darvish's curve in some materials his coach in college gave to him in his fourth year.  He did not throw the curve a lot while playing college ball, but feels it might come in handy when facing professional hitters.

Source: Sanspo 1/18/2014Daily Sports 1/18/2014

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Takahiro Arai would like to take at least one round of outdoor batting practice at Naruohama Stadium before the end of the month to confirm how well the ball is coming off his bat.

Source: Nikkan Sports 1/18/2014

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Takumi Akiyama has been using the stairs at Kotohira-gu Shrine for workouts this off-season.  There are 1,368 steps from the outer path to the inner shrine.  It takes about an hour to do a complete round trip.  Akiyama's workouts include a round trip in the morning, afternoon, and evening.  In between, he does other things like play catch and weight training.

Source: Sponichi 1/18/2014

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Seung Hwan Oh could make his debut in a practice game against the LG Twins (KBO) on February 25.

Source: Sanspo 1/18/2014

The coaches plan to let Oh do his own thing when preparing for the regular season and individual games.  There has been some talk about limiting his workload in the early goings, but otherwise, they do not want to do anything that might disrupt his rhythm or his focus.

Source: Daily Sports 1/18/2014

Oh worked out with Chang-Yong Lim in Guam today.  Workouts included running and playing catch.

Source: Nikkan Sports 1/18/2014

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Mauro Gomez is currently working with a personal trainer.  He is not expected to arrive in Japan until mid-February because his wife is expecting.

Source: Sanspo 1/18/2014

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The Ni-gun team is scheduled to play sixteen games at Koshien Stadium this year (up from twelve last year).

Source: Sanspo 1/18/2014

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Hanshin Tigers News and Notes: March 23, 2013

by on Mar.23, 2013 @ 11:48 pm, under NPB
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Takashi Toritani did not play in today's exhibition game against Lotte because he fouled a ball off his right thigh during a game on the 22nd.  He should be in the line-up on Sunday.

Source: Sponichi 3/23/2013

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Takumi Akiyama started a Ni-gun game against Orix today and gave up a run on five hits over six innings of work.  The lone run scored in the 1st when he surrendered an RBI single to Shinji Takahashi with runners on first and second.

Source: Nikkan Sports 3/23/2013

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Atsushi Nomi will likely make his first regular season start on April 2 against Chunichi at Kyocera Dome.  He is also expected to get a Ni-gun tune-up outing on the 26th against Hiroshima.

The rotation could be: Randy MessengerMinoru Iwata, 1st round draft pick Shintaro Fujinami, Nomi, Jason Standridge, and Daiki Enokida.

Source: Nikkan Sports 3/23/2013

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Fujinami threw eighty-three pitches, mostly from the set position, in the bullpen today.  He is scheduled to throw about 100 pitches in his exhibition game start against Orix at Kyocera Dome on Sunday.

Source: Sponichi 3/23/2013

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Ni-gun game against Orix on Friday:

Masahiro Nakatani started at third and batted fifth.  He went 2-for-4 with a two-run home run and two RBI.  Source: Sanspo 3/23/2013 ... Hayata Ito started in center and batted sixth.  He went 2-for-5 with a two-run home run, two RBI, and three strikeouts.  Source: Sanspo 3/23/2013

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Hanshin Tigers News and Notes: February 12, 2013

by on Feb.12, 2013 @ 11:49 pm, under NPB
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Batting Practice

Monday

  • Takahiro Arai: forty-four swings, twenty could-be hits (mostly toward center) one over the fence

Source: Sanspo 2/12/2013

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Ichi-gun and Ni-gun players had the day off.

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Kohei Shibata, Masashi Nohara, and Yamato worked out on their day off today.

Source: Daily Sports 2/12/2013

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The coaches decided to push Thursday's intra-squad game up to Wednesday for WBC candidates -- their practice game against LG on Monday was rained out after just one inning.

Source: Nikkan Sports 2/12/2013

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Takashi Toritani used a Keisuke Kano bat during Monday's intra-squad game against LG.  At 34.5 inches, it is one inch longer than the bat he used last year.  The handle was also redone so that he can hold it further toward the end -- up until last year, he held the bat about two fingers up from the end.

Toritani is scheduled to play in Wednesday's intra-squad game.

Source: Nikkan Sports 2/12/2013

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Kosuke Fukudome is also slated to play in Wednesday Intra-squad game.

Source: Daily Sports 2/12/2013

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Tomoaki Kanemoto visited Ginoza camp on Monday and spent some time working with Ryota Arai on his hitting.

Source: Sports Hochi 2/12/2013

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Katsuhiko Saka will join the Ichi-gun team for spring camp.  He will essentially take Toritani's spot when he leaves for WBC mini-camp.

Source: Sanspo 2/12/2013

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Takumi Akiyama will be called up to Ichi-gun camp in place of Kazuhito Futagami -- Akiyama pitched an effective two shutout innings during a game against Ni-gun Seibu on Monday; Futagami did not fare so well against LG (KBO) and gave up five runs in an inning of work.

Soure: Sanspo 2/12/2013

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1st round draft pick Shintaro Fujinami threw fifty-two pitches in the bullpen on Monday -- twenty-four were strikes and twenty-eight were balls.

Source: Sports Hochi 2/12/2013

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3rd round draft pick Kojiro Tanabo, Akiyama, Hirokazu Shiranita, and Saka left Kochi today and arrived in Okinawa. All four will begin workouts at Ichi-gun camp on Wednesday.

Source: Nikkan Sports 2/12/2013

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4th round draft pick Shinya Azuhata played some catch and took some batting practice on his day off today.

Source: Nikkan Sports 2/12/2013

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Team owner Shinya Sakai was at Ginoza camp on Monday.  He had a chance to watch Fujinami toss a bullpen session.

Source: Sanspo 2/12/2013

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Hanshin Tigers: March 1, 2012

by on Mar.01, 2012 @ 11:57 pm, under NPB
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The Tigers had the day off today.

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Akihito Fujii was examined at an Osaka hospital on Wednesday and diagnosed with a left oblique strain.  No word on how long it was take for a full recovery, but the team is apparently preparing for the worst, which would be beginning the season without him.

Shinji Komiyama, Takashi Shimizu, and Taichi Okazaki are expected to pick up the slack.

FYI: Sponichi notes that it could take Fujii anywhere from three weeks to a month and a half for a full recovery.

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Pitching coach Takashi Yamaguchi told reporters on Wednesday that the competition for the last spot in the starting rotation will take place over a four game period between March 3 and March 7.  Yuya Ando, Hiroyuki Kobayashi, Naoto Tsuru, and Tatsuya Kojima are each expected to pitch.

The first five pitchers will likely be: Atsushi Nomi, Minoru Iwata, Randy Messenger, Jason Standridge, and Yasutomo Kubo.

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Nomi threw about 1,600 pitches during spring camp.  That is a team high.

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Takumi Akiyama stopped his bullpen session short on Wednesday due to tightness in his leg(s).  While it does not appear to be serious, the team will observe Akiyama over the next few days to see if they need to make adjust their pitching plans moving forward.

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The media learned on Wednesday that Masahiro Nakatani will be sent down to Ni-gun on Friday.  Over seven games in February, Nakatani went 3-for-22 with no homers and no RBI.  The Tigers decided to send him down to Ni-gun to give him more chances to play and because the Ni-gun team will need another catcher since Fujii will likely miss some time.

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Atsushi Nomi will not travel with the team to Fukuoka and will instead prepare for an exhibition game start against Seibu at Koshien on March 9.  From there he will get two more exhibition game starts (March 16 vs Lotte at QVC and March 23 vs Orix at Kyocera Dome) before the opening day start on March 30 (vs Yokohama at Kyocera Dome).  This schedule will allow Nomi to pitch on six days of rest.

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Tomoaki Kanemoto will likely begin playing on a regular basis beginning on March 6 (exhibition game vs Softbank at Yahoo Dome).  Assuming no problems, he could also play some left during a five game exhibition game stretch at Koshien that begins on March 9.

On Wednesday, after batting practice, Kanemoto played some catch out in left at a distance of about sixty meters.  He remained in left during live batting practice and finished things off with some running.

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1st round draft pick Hayata Ito swung the bat 210 times on Wednesday.

Ito's workouts at Naruohama today lasted about two hours (from 9am to 11am) and included weight training and batting practice.

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The Tigers saw a drop in attendance during spring camp this year: they drew 58,300 while holding spring camp in one location (Ginoza, Okinawa) compared to 68,400 last year when they held spring camp in two locations (Ginoza, Okinawa and Aki, Kochi).

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Some batting stats through Wednesday:

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Hanshin Tigers: February 25, 2012

by on Feb.26, 2012 @ 1:04 am, under NPB
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Bullpen Sessions / Batting Practice

Saturday

  • Takumi Akiyama threw thirty-nine pitches in the bullpen. (Sanspo)
  • Akira Iwamoto threw thirty-five pitches in the bullpen. (Nikkan Sports)

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Including his bullpen session on Saturday, Akira Iwamoto has now thrown over 1,600 pitches during spring camp.

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Yasutomo Kubo (coming back from right shoulder tightness) played catch off the bullpen mound on Saturday before tossing a session with the catcher squatting.  Kubo later told reporters he was feeling ok.

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Takumi Akiyama is scheduled to make an appearance in Sunday's exhibition game against Chunichi.

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1st round draft pick Hayata Ito swung at about 200 pitches during soft-toss batting practice (focusing most of the session on his left hand since he is still working his way back from right wrist pain) on his day off on Friday.

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Masahiro Nakatani swung at about eighty pitches during batting practice on his day off Friday.  He also recorded the session and spent some time reviewing the footage.

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Yutaka Wada would like the team to win their Tuesday and Sunday games because a Tuesday win will allow them to start the week on a positive note and a Sunday win will be a good way for fans to end their weekends and the players to end their week.

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Through Friday:

1st round draft pick Ito is 3-for-17 with one RBI over five games.

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Hanshin Tigers: February 12, 2012

by on Feb.12, 2012 @ 11:59 pm, under NPB
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Batting Practice Bullpen Sessions / Batting Practice

Saturday

  • Matt Murton took seventy-five swings during lunchtime BP and hit eighteen over the fence. (Sponichi)
  • Tomoaki Kanemoto took ninety-seven swings during lunchtime BP and hit thirty-three over the fence. (Sponichi)
  • 1st round draft pick Hayata Ito took sixty-six swings during BP and did not hit any over the fence. (Sanspo)
  • Masahiro Nakatani took eighty swings during BP and hit six over the fence. (Sanspo)
  • Craig Brazell took seventy-one swings during lunchtime BP and his twenty-one over the fence. (Nikkan Sports)

Saturday

  • Yuya Ando threw fifty-two pitches in the bullpen. (Sanspo)
  • Kyuji Fujikawa threw thirty-four pitches, including off-speed pitches, in the bullpen. (Sanspo)

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NPB Commissioner Ryozo Kato visited Ginoza camp today.  This was the sixth team Kato visited so far during spring camp.

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Yuya Ando is scheduled to toss his first batting practice session during spring camp on Monday.

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Tomoaki Kanemoto wore a t-shirt on Saturday that poked fun of Takahiro Arai's Triple Crown: Error King, GIDP King, RBI King.

After extra BP on Saturday, Kanemoto ran a number of dashes: five sets each of 50m, 40m, 30m, 20m, and 10m.

Today, Kanemoto made five plays out in left during situational fielding practice: he made two throws to second, one throw to third, and one throw to home plate.

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Matt Murton hit the pitching machine again during indoor batting practice on Saturday.

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Pitching coach Takashi Yamaguchi worked with Takumi Akiyama for about thirty minutes during extra fielding practice on Saturday.

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Shinjiro Hiyama swung the bat with one hand 147 times during soft-toss batting practice on Saturday.  He also swung the bat ten times with both hands at about 50-60%.  And while he has yet to take outdoor fielding practice, he is currently able to throw the ball at a max distance of about thirty meters after catching/fielding it indoors.

====== UPDATE 2/13 @ 1:39am

The Tigers drew about 6,000 fans on Saturday.

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Craig Brazell worked with bodybuilder Terry Beedie (sp?) during the off-season.

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Team owner Shinya Sakai observed Ginoza camp today.

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Hanshin Tigers: February 10, 2012

by on Feb.10, 2012 @ 11:59 pm, under NPB
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Batting Practice Bullpen Sessions / Batting Practice

Friday

  • Matt Murton took forty-five swings against a machine that throws curves. (Sports Hochi)

Thursday

  • Craig Brazell took seventy-seven swings and hit twenty-three over the fence, including six in a row. (Sanspo)
  • Takahiro Arai took seventy-four swings and hit seven over the fence. (Sanspo)
  • Masahiro Nakatani went 1-for-3 during situational BP: single to left, strikeout looking, fly out to right. (Sanspo)  He also took fifty-seven swings during regular BP and hit one over the fence. (Nikkan Sports)
  • Takashi Shimizu went 1-for-3 during situational BP.  His lone hit: a double to left. (Sanspo)
  • Shinji Komiyama went collected three hits: single to right off Masanori Fujihara; single to center off Naoto Tsuru; and a triple to center of Fujihara. (Sanspo)
  • 1st round draft pick Hayata Ito took 113 swings during extra BP and hit three over the fence. (Sports Hochi Osaka)

Thursday

  • Takumi Akiyama threw ninety pitches in the bullpen.  He also set imaginary counts and situations during his session. (Sanspo)
  • Kyuji Fujikawa threw eighty-six pitches in the bullpen. (Sanspo)  Or eighty-eight pitches. (Daily Sports)
  • Naoto Tsuru faced eleven batters during situational batting practice and allowed three hits on twenty-eight pitches. (Sanspo)
  • Tomoyuki Kubota threw thirty-three pitches during situational batting practice. (Sanspo)

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The team had the day off today.

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Matt Murton worked out on his day off today.  His workouts included running, stretching, and batting practice.

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1st round draft pick Hayata Ito spent some time hitting in the cages against machines during his day off today.

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Takumi Akiyama told reporters he plans to test his cutter when he gets his chance to toss situational batting practice.

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Craig Brazell spent about thirty minutes working on his fielding at first base with INF/base-running coach Teruyoshi Kuji on Thursday.

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Kenji Jojima spent about thirty minutes chasing down baseballs hit to the outfield during lunchtime BP on Thursday.

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Kyuji Fujikawa spent some time giving a number of players, like Tomoyuki Kubota, Kazuhito Futagami, and Hirokazu Shiranita advice on pitching on Thursday.  This apparently came after team president Nobuo Minami approached Fujikawa and asked him to think about what he can do, as captain of the pitching staff, to help pitchers that have struggled.

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During situational BP on Thursday, Masahiro Nakatani made a strong throw to home from right: with Kenichi Tagami on second, Yamato hit a single through the right side; Nakatani fielded the ball and quickly threw a one-hop bullet to home plate to get Tagami out at home.

Nakatani could bat forth and start in left during a practice game on February 12 (Nippon Ham).

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Takahiro Arai, and a number of other players, worked on their fielding/throwing after general practices on Thursday.  Special instructor Tatsuro Hirooka provided his input.

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Naoto Tsuru has a shot at either becoming a back of the rotation starter or a reliever this season.  He could also pitch in a practice game against Nippon Ham on February 12.

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Tomoaki Kanemoto was planning to participate in situational fielding practice during the second block of spring camp, but he ended up putting it off until the third block because of some shoulder tightness.

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Hanshin Tigers: February 8, 2012

by on Feb.08, 2012 @ 11:59 pm, under NPB
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Batting Practice Bullpen Sessions

Wednesday

  • Kenji Jojima took ninety-six swings during lunchtime BP and hit twenty-one over the fence. (Daily Sports)
  • 1st round draft pick Hayata Ito collected two hits during situational BP: ground out to first off Kazuhito Futagami, single to center off Ryuji Wakatake, single to center of Futagami. (Daily Sports)
  • Shinta Hifumi collected a hit during his third situational BP at bat: a single to left off Ikusei pitcher Hiroya Shimamoto. (Daily Sports)
  • Matt Murton took a total 118 swings during soft-toss BP and hitting against a machine that throws curves. (Nikkan Sports)

Tuesday

  • 1st round draft pick Hayata Ito took 340 swings during long soft-toss BP, twenty-three swings (thirty pitches) against 4th round draft pick Kazuo Ito, and ninety-nine swings during extra BP. (Sanspo)  And perhaps another round of BP that produced sixteen could be hits, including one over the fence, on forty-four swings (Nikkan Sports)

Tuesday

  • Atsushi Nomi threw ninety-three pitches, all fastballs and all to the inside corner, assuming a right-handed batter. (Sanspo)
  • Kyuji Fujikawa threw forty-four pitches, including off-speed pitches.  This was his second "real" session since the start of spring.  An umpire also stepped in, beginning with the sixth pitch of the session. (Sanspo)

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Matt Murton joined the team for practices today.  His workouts included warm-ups, playing catch, running, fielding practice, and batting practice against a machine.

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1st round draft pick Hayata Ito, Masahiro Nakatani, Kenichi Tagami, and Ryota Arai took extra fielding practice (about forty-five minutes) in the outfield at Kin Stadium today.  Takashi Toritani and Kentaro Sekimoto took extra fielding practice, under special instructor Tatsuro Hirooka, in the infield at Ginoza Stadium.

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Norihiro Akahoshi worked with players on their base-running skills (stealing bases) today.

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Shinjiro Hiyama started taking fielding practice a distance of about thirty meters (fielding and throwing) on Tuesday.

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Kenji Jojima started working on gloving one-hop throws from short and third during practices on Tuesday -- Takashi Toritani and Keiichi Hirano from short and Kentaro Sekimoto and Ryota Arai from third.

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4th round draft pick Kazuo Ito faced Issei Morita, Haruki Kurose, and 1st round draft pick Ito during batting practice on Tuesday.  He threw eighty pitches and allowed eighteen could-be hits.  Morita and Kurose each collected five could-be hits.  K. Ito threw a total thirty pitches to H. Ito, which resulted in twenty-three swings and eight could-be hits.

Takumi Akiyama faced Nakatani, Shunsuke, and Tagami on Tuesday and allowed five could-be hits on sixty-three pitches (or sixty-one pitches).  Nakatani collected one could-be hit and Shunsuke two could-be hits.

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Takahiro Arai's two hour workout with special instructor Hirooka on Tuesday began with making throws into a net while sitting in a chair.  From their, he got off the chair and moved further and further away from the net.  Toward the end, Yutaka Wada joined the group and started hitting grounders to Arai.  All told, 404 throws in the net along with fielding 112 grounders.

Sports Hochi Osaka provides a little more detail:

14:15 - a mirror is placed behind the net; picking up baseballs tossed to him with his bare right hand and then throwing them into a net while seated
14:45 - throwing into a net about five meters away after picking up baseballs tossed to him
15:10 - picking up baseballs tossed to him with his bare left hand
15:26 - picking up baseballs tossed to him with a glove
15:40 - fielding grounders hit by Wada and throwing into a new fifteen meters away
16:00 - picking up baseballs tossed to him and throwing into a net about five meters away
16:20 - end

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1st round draft pick Ito made a change to his batting stance on Tuesday, with help from batting coach Atsushi Kataoka: he dropped his hands down a little.

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The front four in the starting rotation will likely include Atsushi Nomi, Minoru Iwata, Randy Messenger, and Jason Standridge.  The remaining two sports are up for grabs and could go to Yuya Ando and Hiroyuki Kobayashi.

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The Murton's named their newest addition to family, Andrew Jacob Murton.

Matt Murton is working on starting up a personal site in Japanese.  He has also prepared some baseball cards and 5,000 bracelets with the phrase "Kami-sama wa watashi-no chikaradesu."

Murton did a lot of lifting during the off-season and gained three kilograms (currently weight 103kg) in the hopes of developing more opposite field power.  He also brought training equipment to the hospital so that he could work out while waiting for his wife to give birth.

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