Category: NPB

[12/3/2016] Updates on Shotaro Ide, Toshio Saito, Shinta Hifumi

Former Yokohama Bay Stars Shotaro Ide has decided to retire. He attended the twelve team tryouts in November and went 1-for-5. He was waiting for an offer, but did not receive one.

Toshio Saito was let go by the Orix Buffaloes after the season. He was also offered a job by the Buffaloes to join their staff as an advance scout. It would mean having to retire, but he is open to the idea.

Hanshin Tigers’ senryokugai Shinta Hifumi did not attend the twelve team tryouts in November because he already has plans to join the BC League’s Ishikawa Million Stars.

Source: Sports Hochi 12/3/2016, Sponichi 12/3/2016, Sponichi 12/3/2016


[12/3/2016] Raul Valdes will be with Chunichi again in 2017

Chunichi Dragons’ official Kazuo Nishiyama accepted the Speed Up Award on behalf of Raul Valdes during the NPB Awards ceremony on November 28. After accepting the award, he said that Valdes will be back next year. The two sides most likely agreed to a one-year contract.

Source: Sponichi 12/3/2016


[12/2/2016] 130 players became free agents on December 2

 The NPB posted reserved lists for all twelve NPB teams on December 2. Players that did not make the reserved lists (130 in all) automatically became free agents.



[12/2/2016] Kaneko and Arakaki planning to retire

Softbank senryokugai Keisuke Kaneko (31) and Yakult senryokugai Nagisa Arakaki (36) are planning to retire because they have not received any offers to play in 2017. Both players attended the twelve team tryouts at Koshien Stadium last month in hopes of drumming up interest. Kaneko went 1-for-5. Arakaki topped out at 140km/h and retired the three batters he faced.

Source: Daily Sports 11/30/2016, Nikkan Sports 11/30/2016


[12/2/2016] Garrett Jones and Scott Mathieson sign new contracts with Yomiuri

The Yomiuri Giants announced today that they signed Garrett Jones (35) and Scott Mathieson (32) to new contracts for the 2017 season. According to the media, Jones agreed to a one-year deal worth an estimated 1.4 million US dollars and Mathieson to a one-year deal worth an 2.5 million US dollars.

Source: Yomiuri announcement, Daily Sports 12/2/2016


[12/2/2016] Hanshin Tigers reach agreement with Eric Campbell

The Hanshin Tigers announced today that they reached an agreement with twenty-nine-year-old Eric Campbell. He was assigned the uniform number 29. The Tigers released the following comment from Campbell:

After going back and forth between the Majors and minors, I wanted to try playing in Japan. I have faced Japanese pitchers in the Majors and I feel I have a good idea of what the level of play is like in Japan. The international scout told me to prepare myself for a lot of batting practice during [spring] camp. I want to do my best to adjust not only to the game, but also to the system, while listening to advice from others. I will do my best.

According to the media, the two sides agreed to a one-year deal worth an estimated seventy million yen.

Source: Hanshin announcementDaily Sports 12/2/2016, Daily Sports 12/2/2016


[12/2/2016] Hanshin Tigers sign Messenger, Mateo to new contracts

The Hanshin Tigers announced on November 29 that they signed Randy Messenger (35) and Marcos Mateo (32) to new contracts for the 2017 season. According to the media, Messenger agreed to a two-year contract with an estimated annual salary of 350 million yen. Mateo signed a one-year contract worth an estimated 110 million yen.

Messenger will become the first foreign player to spend eight years with the Hanshin Tigers next year. The previous record of seven years was held by Gene Bacque (1962-1968) and Jeff Williams (2003-2009).

Source: Hanshin announcement (Messenger), Hanshin announcement (Mateo), Daily Sports 11/29/2016, Daily Sports 11/29/2016


[12/2/2016] Takahiro Norimoto to sign new three-year deal

Takahiro Norimoto met the Rakuten Eagles on November 30 for salary negotiations. The media learned that he agreed to a three-year deal that also includes a clause that guarantees a sit-down with the club about the posting system after the last year of the contract in 2019.

Norimoto currently does not have a strong desire to play in the Majors, but apparently wants to keep his options open in case he changes his mind.

Source: Daily Sports 12/2/2016


[12/2/2016] Shogo Akiyama signs a three-year contract

Shogo Akiyama met the Seibu Lions for salary negotiations at Seibu Prince Dome on November 1 and agreed to a new three-year contract with a variable salary. He is set to earn an estimated 200 million yen plus incentives next year.

Source: Daily Sports 12/1/2016, Daily Sports 12/2/2016

[UPDATE 12/3 @ 10:04pm]

Akiyama’s contract with Seibu could be three years at about 800 million yen (with incentives maxed out).

Source: Sponichi 12/2/2016


[12/2/2016] 2016 U-CAN New Word/Buzzword of the Year: Kamitteiru

Kamitteiru (神ってる) was selected as U-CAN’s 2016 New Word/Buzzword of the Year. The award was given to Hiroshima Carp manager Koichi Ogata and Seiya Suzuki. Suzuki accepted the award during the presentation ceremony on December 1.

The word itself is not new, but it became popular this year after Ogata used it during a post-game interview in June to describe the walk-off home runs Suzuki hit in two consecutive games. The word comes from kamigakatteiru (神懸かってる), which loosely means while under God’s possession, or something out of the ordinary.

Source: U-CAN announcement