[4/20/2016] Takuya Asao tosses batting practice scrimmage

Takuya Asao (right shoulder inflammation) pitched in a batting practice scrimmage at Nagoya Stadium on April 20. It was his first session since the start of the regular season. He faced eight hitters, threw thirty pitches, allowed two-could be hits, walked one, and struck out one. He is hoping to take the next step by pitching in a rehab game at Ni-gun.

Source: Sports Hochi 4/20/2016


[4/20/2016] Brandon Laird ejected for “arguing” called third strike

Brandon Laird struck out looking against Hirotaka Koishi with a runner on second and one out in the eighth inning against Seibu at Sapporo Dome on April 20. He did not seem pleased with the call and kicked up some dirt and chalk when he swung at the batter’s box line near home plate. Tomoya Ishiyama, home plate umpire, saw the gesture as an insult/argument against his call and immediately ejected Laird.

Source: Daily Sports 4/20/2016, Nikkan Sports 4/20/2016

[UPDATE 4/21 @ 5:05pm]

The NPB gave Laird a stern warning and fined him 100,000 yen for his ejection on April 20.

Source: Daily Sports 4/21/2016


[4/21/2016] Shinji Tajima’s wife gives birth to second child

The Chunichi Dragons announced on April 20 that Shinji Tajima’s wife gave birth to the couple’s second child, a girl weighing 2,600 grams, at a hospital in Nagoya.

Source: Nikkan Sports 4/21/2016, Sponichi 4/20/2016


[4/20/2016] Yuki Yanagita’s walk streak comes to an end

Yuki Yanagita’s streak of consecutive games with a walk ended at eighteen on April 20.

  • first inning, none on, two out, ground out to short against Kota Futaki (B, B, B, Kl, F, G)
  • fourth inning, none on, two out, ground out to short against Kota Futaki (G)
  • sixth inning, none on, two out, strike out looking against Kota Futaki (Kl, B, B, F, Kl)
  • ninth inning, lead-off batter, single to center off Masaki Minami (H)

[4/20/2016] Kazunari Abe to miss four weeks with ankle injury

Kazunari Abe complained of pain in his right ankle after Tuesday’s game against Softbank. He was examined at a hospital in Chiba and diagnosed with an injury to his right deltoid ligament. He will require about four weeks for a full recovery.

Source: Lotte announcement


[4/20/2016] Shohei Tateyama has surgery to clean out right elbow

The Yakult Swallows announced today that Shohei Tateyama had surgery to remove loose bodies in his right elbow. He will most likely require about six weeks for a full recovery.

Source: Yakult announcement

[UPDATE 4/21 @ 7:34pm]

It might take Tateyama about three months before he is ready to rejoin the active roster (six weeks for a full recovery plus six weeks of rehab). He has now had five operations on his right elbow.

Source: Sanspo 4/21/2016


[4/20/2016] Naoto Watanabe earns international FA option

Naoto Watanabe earned his international FA option today with nine years of service time on the active roster.

Source: Chunichi Sports 4/20/2016


[4/20/2016] Kenshi Sugiya to miss about two months

The Nippon Ham Fighters announced today that Kenshi Sugiya had surgery to remove hamate bone fragments from his right hand. There were no complications during the procedure. Sugiya will most likely require about two months for a full recovery.

Source: Nippon Ham announcement,


[4/20/2016] Daisuke Matsuzaka gives up two runs in two innings

Daisuke Matsuzaka pitched in a rehab game at Ni-gun today. He started the game against Chunichi at Chikugo and gave up two runs on four hits and three walks over two innings of work. He threw fifty-two pitches and topped out at 144km/h.

Matsuzaka’s next rehab game could come about a week later during a Chunichi series at Nagoya Stadium. The next hurdle will be about sixty pitches.

Source: Tokyo Sports 4/20/2016, Tokyo Sports 4/20/2016, Nikkan Sports 4/20/2016


[4/20/2016] Takayuki Terauchi as emergency back-up catcher

Yoshinobu Takahashi would like the option of Takayuki Terauchi as an emergency back-up catcher. Terauchi joined catcher practices at Giants Stadium on April 19.

The Giants currently have two catchers on the active roster: Seiji Kobayashi and Ryoji Aikawa. Kobayashi has become the main catcher with Aikawa playing the back-up role. Aikawa has a decent bat and could also be used as a pinch-hitter. Terauchi would give Takahashi a little more insurance if something were to happen to Kobayashi or Aikawa.

Ideally, Shinnosuke Abe would be an option, but he is still working his way back from right shoulder issues.

Source: Daily Sports 4/20/2016, Nikkan Sports 4/20/2016

NPB Standings [Full]
Hiroshima 67 41 25 1
Hanshin 64 37 27 0
Yokohama 66 31 33 2
Yomiuri 65 29 36 0
Chunichi 67 28 36 3
Yakult 65 25 39 1
Rakuten 60 40 20 0
Softbank 67 42 25 0
Seibu 63 35 26 2
Orix 64 29 35 0
Nippon Ham 64 27 37 0
Lotte 66 20 45 1
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