Chihiro Kaneko 2018 Off-season Updates

Date Updates
12/5/2018 2:03pm – Nippon Ham Fighters reach agreement with Chihiro Kaneko
12/4/2018 10:45am – The Fighters could be close to working out a deal with Kaneko. According to Sponichi, their offer may have been a one-year deal worth about 100 million yen plus a nice performance bonus package. Nikkan Sports 12/4/2018, Sponichi 12/4/2018
12/3/2018 10:55pm – The Fighters have already met Kaneko and made him an offer. Sponichi 12/3/2018, Sanspo 12/3/2018, Sports Hochi 12/3/2018, Nikkan Sports 12/3/2018 … 2:50pm – Kaneko is willing to talk to any team interested in his services (domestic or overseas). Daily Sports 12/3/2018, Sponichi 12/3/2018, Nikkan Sports 12/3/2018
12/2/2018 10:57pm – Kaneko is not hard-set on starting and is apparently open to a role out of the bullpen. Sanspo 12/2/2018, Nikkan Sports 12/2/2018 … 6:58am – The Nippon Ham Fighters are interested. Source: Sanspo 12/1/2018, Chunichi Sports 12/1/2018, Sports Hochi 12/1/2018
11/30/2018 2:21pm – The Chunichi Dragons are interested, but uncertain if they have the space. Sports Hochi 11/30/2018 … The Buffaloes are planning to let Kaneko use their facilities for workouts while he is a free agent. Nikkan Sports 11/30/2018
11/29/2018 2:46am – The Buffaloes received a call from Kaneko on November 28 asking to be released. They are planning to remove him from their list of reserved players at the end of the month. Kaneko will become a free agent on December 2. Source: Daily Sports 11/28/2018, Sports Hochi 11/28/2018, Sponichi 11/28/2018, Nikkan Sports 11/28/2018, Tokyo Sports 11/28/2018, Sanspo 11/28/2018
11/27/2018 10:46am – According to an interview posted by Tokyo Sports, Kaneko is still interested in the MLB. He also clarified that he wanted to experience the MLB, not take it on as a challenge. Tokyo Sports 11/26/2018
11/26/2018 1:34pm – Kaneko is planning to meet the Orix for a fourth time some time in the very near future. He told fans during fan appreciation day on November 25 that he had made a decision and that everyone would soon know how things were going to turn out. Nikkan Sports 11/26/2018, Sponichi 11/26/2018
11/24/2018 10:10am – If Kaneko really does become a free agent, the Rakuten Eagles will probably take a look. Rakuten manager Yosuke Hiraishi was teammates with Kaneko when they played for Toyota (Industrial League). And depending on which report you read, Kaneko has yet to make a decision. Sports Hochi 11/24/2018, Daily Sports 11/24/2018, Daily Sports 11/24/2018, Sponichi 11/24/2018, Nikkan Sports 11/24/2018 … 3:24am – According to Sponichi, Kaneko has opted to become a free agent. Sponichi 11/23/2018
11/22/2018 2:10pm – The Buffaloes are okay with signing Kaneko even if he opts to become a free agent. Kaneko is considering all options that might help him reach his goals as a player during the tail-end of his career. Contract terms (salary, years, incentives) are not the main of his discussions with the team. He does not consider the discussions to be negotiations. He likes the Buffaloes, but is not sure if it is in his or the team’s best interest to stay. As for his free agent option, he did not realize he re-earned this season and never even really considered becoming a free agent until the Buffaloes gave him the choice by cutting his salary by more than the allowed forty percent. Sponichi 11/21/2018, Nikkan Sports 11/21/2018, Nikkan Sports 11/22/2018, Sports Hochi 11/22/2018, Daily Sports 11/22/2018, Sanspo 11/22/2018
11/21/2018 Kaneko met with the Buffaloes on November 20 for a third round of negotiations. His agent spent about an hour talking to Orix officials. The Buffaloes feel negotiations went well, but Kaneko has yet to make a decision. He has two options: accept the Buffaloes’ offer, or become a free agent. If Kaneko accepts the offer, he will become the first player to see his salary drop by 500 million yen. The previous record of 450 was set by Toshiya Sugiuchi in 2015. Daily Sports 11/21/2018, Sponichi 11/21/2018, Nikkan Sports 11/21/2018, Sports Hochi 11/21/2018
11/20/2018 Kaneko’s salary in 2018 may have been 600 million yen and the Buffaloes may be trying to get him to agree to a 500 million yen reduction. The two sides are slated to meet again some time his week. Chunichi Sports 11/20/2018, Daily Sports 11/20/2018, Sanspo 11/20/2018
11/17/2018 The Buffaloes offer to Kaneko might be around 100 million yen, down from the estimated 500 million yen he made this past season. The two sides are expected to meet at least one more time. If Kaneko turns down the offer, he could become a free agent. Sponichi 11/17/2018
11/07/2018 The Buffaloes are not sure what Kaneko wants to do. They also feel like he is being a little cold to them. Tokyo Sports 11/7/2018
11/06/2018 Kaneko could choose the MLB. Sponichi 11/6/2018 … Kaneko met Orix officials on October 5 for the second time this off-season. Nikkan Sports 11/6/2018, Daily Sports 11/6/2018
11/05/2018 The Buffaloes met Kaneko for over two hours on November 5 and discussed his available options. Kaneko has not made it clear what he wants to do yet. They will continue discussions. Tokyo Sports 11/5/2018
10/31/2018 According to Sports Hochi, Kaneko could be looking at a pay cut worth over 200 million yen. Sports Hochi 10/31/2018
10/30/2018 The media learned that Kaneko was offered a significant salary cut. Sanspo 10/30/2018
10/15/2018 Norifumi Nishimura met Kaneko on October 14 and asked him for help next season. Sports Hochi 10/15/2018, Daily Sports 10/15/2018
10/05/2018 Expected to earn second free agent option via injury exception. Planning to consider all options. Sponichi 10/5/2018, Nikkan Sports 10/5/2018, Daily Sports 10/5/2018

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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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