SEI

[5/11/2016] Seibu Lions employee arrested for drug possession

The Seibu Lions announced today that an employee (thirty-year-old male) was arrested by the Tokyo Metropolitan Police Department on April 4 and prosecuted on April 22 for violating the Cannabis Control Act. He made bail on May 6 and was questioned by team officials on May 7.

According to the Lions, cannabis was found in an international package shipped from the United States addressed to the employee and seized during a customs check at Narita Airport.

The employee joined Seibu in January this year and was in charge of broadcasts and media. Team president Hajime Igo offered a public apology during a press conference today. Director Mitsuo Iida added that they were going to deal with the matter strictly and according to company regulations.

Source: Sponichi 5/11/2016, Nikkan Sports 5/11/2016

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[5/11/2016] Sky Perfect Sayonara Award for March/April

Central League

Shota Sugiyama, Chunichi (First Time)

April 16 vs Hanshin at Nagoya Dome. Bottom of the 9th down 3-2 with the bases loaded and one out. Sugiyama recorded a walk-off double to center. The offense was held scoreless over the first seven innings of the game. They managed to plate two runs in the eighth. He swung at the first pitch he saw and picked up the first walk-off hit of his career.

Pacific League

Yuki Yoshimura, Softbank (First Time)

April 17 vs Rakuten at YafuOku Dome. Bottom of the 12th inning with the score tied at seven and a runner on first and no out. Yoshimura blasted a walk-off two-run home run to left-center. He also hit a three-run home run to tie the game in the 9th.

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SOF

[5/10/2016] Rick van den Hurk extends winning streak to fourteen

Rick van den Hurk extended his winning streak to streak to fourteen games with a 2-1 victory over the Chiba Lotte Marines at YafuOku Dome tonight and set two new NPB records: winning streak to start a career and general winning streak for foreign pitchers.

(more…)

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RAK

[5/10/2016] Cafe coming to Smile Glico Park in kobo Stadium

The Rakuten Eagles are planning to build a two-story cafe inside Smile Glico Park. The structure will cost about 150 million yen to build and could be ready in August.

The building will have a capacity of about 250 with an open terrace on the second floor. Fans will be able to enjoy the game from inside the cafe. Multi-purpose spaces will also be set aside for events before and after games, or on off-days.

Source: Sponichi 5/10/2016

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HAN

[5/10/2016] Hanshin Tigers beginning to explore foreign market for 2017

The media learned on May 9 that the Hanshin Tigers sent two scouts to Korea on May 6 to check on talent. They will also be working t0 bolster relations with a number of teams, including Samsung. The two scouts will be in Korea for ten days.

The Tigers currently have six foreign players on their seventy-man roster. They are not looking for talent to sign this year, but rather for next season. The organization is also planning to explore the market in the United States with their US-based scouts during the summer.

Source: Daily Sports 5/10/2016

[UPDATE 5/18 @ 11:22pm]

Hanshin chief scout Katsuhiko Kido returned to Japan on May 16 after about a ten-day long scouting trip to Korea.

Source: Sanspo 5/17/2016

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HIR

[5/10/2016] Younger Hiroshima arms to get more chances to start

With pitchers like Hiroki Kuroda, Yuya Fukui, and Hiroki Yokoyama either hurt or struggling, the Hiroshima Carp will most likely turn to a number of younger options.

Aren Kuri will most likely get a start against Yakult at Jingu Stadium on May 12. Takaya Toda could follow with a start against Chunichi at Nagoya Dome on May 13. The next two starts after that could go to Akitake Okada, Kyohei Nakamura, or Yuta Nakamura.

Source: Daily Sports 5/10/2016

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YAK

[5/10/2016] Yakult Swallows: Potential starters for Hiroshima series

Potential starters for the next two Hiroshima series (May 10-12 at Jingu Stadium and May 17-19 at Mazda Stadium), according to Sanspo:

  • Nagisa Arakaki (May 10 and 17)
  • Masanori Ishikawa (May 11 and 18)
  • Yasuhiro Ogawa (May 12 and 19)

Yoshihisa Naruse and Hirofumi Yamanaka could return to the active roster in time starts against Yomiuri at Tokyo Dome on May 13 and 14, respectively.

Source: Sanspo 5/10/2016

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HIR

[5/10/2016] Hiroki Kuroda begins training at Mazda Stadium

Hiroki Kuroda reported to Mazda Stadium on May 10 for about two hours of treatment (right shoulder) and training. He also visited a hospital in Hiroshima to get pain relief for his neck and shoulder. He is still hoping to make it back to the active roster in the minimum ten days.

Source: Nikkan Sports 5/10/2016, Daily Sports 5/10/2016

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CHU

[5/10/2016] Shuhei Takahashi begins rehab at Nagoya Stadium

Shuhei Takahashi had surgery on his right hand at a hospital in Nagoya on May 6. He began his rehab at Nagoya Stadium on May 9. He spent most of his time working on his lower body since his right hand is immobilized.

Takahashi will wear a brace for a about week. Stitches should come out after about two weeks. It could take about two months for a full recovery.

Source: Sponichi 5/10/2016, Nikkan Sports 5/10/2016

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[5/10/2016] Nihon Seimei MVP of the Month Awards for March/April

Central League

Pitching

Tomoyuki Sugano, Yomiuri (Second Time)
6 G, 3-0, 48.0 IP, 0.56 ERA, 2 CG, 42 SO, 3 ER

Second MVP of the Month award since March/April 2014. Sugano tossed seven shutout innings on opening day to help the team win its first game of the season. He won three games in March/April and recorded two consecutive shutouts. He allowed earned runs in just one of six starts.

Hitting

Dayan Viciedo, Chunichi (First Time)
28 G, .347 AVG, 34 H, 9 HR, 23 RBI

Viciedo started his first season in the NPB off with home runs in his first three games, beginning on opening day. He continued his hit hitting and led the league in home runs (9) in March/April. His twenty-three RBIs was good for second. He has become a mainstay in the four hole and is helping the team win with big hits, like with a walk-off home run against Hanshin at Nagoya Dome on April 17.

Pacific League

Pitching

Hideaki Wakui, Lotte (Third Time)
6 G, 5-0, 41.2 IP, 2.59 ERA, 26 SO, 12 ER

Wakui started six games in March/April and went 5-0. He recorded seven shutout innings against Nippon Ham on opening day. It was the fifth opening day victory of his career. He failed to pick up a win against Orix on April 23, despite pitching well (one run over eight innings). He won the MVP of the Month award in June 2006 and July 2009.

Hitting

Ernesto Mejia, Seibu (First Time)
28 G, .315 AVG, 35 H, 10 HR, 28 RBI

Mejia led the league in home runs, RBI, total bases (71), slugging (.640) and hits (35) in March/April. He recorded a game-tying RBI and walk-off home run against Orix on March 25. He notched a five-game hitting streak in March and an eight-game hitting streak in April. He drove in six runs with three hits, including a home run, against Nippon Ham on April 20 and blasted three home runs in consecutive trips to the plate against Rakuten on April 24.

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NPB Standings [Full]
G W L T
Hiroshima 68 42 25 1
Hanshin 65 37 28 0
Yokohama 67 31 34 2
Chunichi 68 29 36 3
Yomiuri 66 29 37 0
Yakult 66 26 39 1
G W L T
Rakuten 61 40 21 0
Softbank 68 43 25 0
Seibu 64 35 27 2
Orix 65 29 36 0
Nippon Ham 65 28 37 0
Lotte 67 21 45 1
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