[8/30/2016] Shohei Otani could prep for Softbank series by pitching in two games

According to Sanspo…

Nippon Ham Fighters’ Pitching Coach Masato Yoshii told reporters that Shohei Otani probably will not pitch this week because he could use a little more time to prepare. Otani’s schedule recently took a hit when he missed a few days because of a cold. He resumed bullpen sessions on August 30.

If Otani does not pitch out of the bullpen in any games this week, it could be an indication that the Fighters are planning to delay his return to the starting rotation until mid-September. That might work out since they play their last two games against Softbank on September 21 and 22.

According to Tokyo Sports…

Otani could make an appearance out of the bullpen on September 7 against Lotte at Sapporo Dome and September 15 against Orix at Sapporo Dome because the team has the day off the following day. That could put him in line for a start on September 22 against Softbank at YafuOku Dome.

According to Sponichi…

Otani could make an appearance in relief during a two-game series against Lotte that begins on September 6. He could get a “warm-up” start during a three-game series against Orix that begins on September 15. The two previous appearances would work up to a start during a two-games series against Softbank that begins on September 21. He might get one more start before the end of the season on September 28 against Seibu.

Source: Sanspo 8/30/2013, Tokyo Sports 8/30/2016, Sponichi 8/30/2016

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NPB Standings [Full]
Hiroshima 143 88 51 4
Hanshin 143 78 61 4
Yokohama 143 73 65 5
Yomiuri 143 72 68 3
Chunichi 143 59 79 5
Yakult 143 45 96 2
Softbank 143 94 49 0
Seibu 143 79 61 3
Rakuten 143 77 63 3
Orix 143 63 79 1
Nippon Ham 143 60 83 0
Lotte 143 54 87 2
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