[3/27/2017] Rakuten Eagles: Manabu Mima to get opening day start

Masataka Nashida told reporters today that he decided to give Manabu Mima the opening day start. Takayuki Kishi was slated to get the start, but is currently out with the flu. Nashida decided to turn to Mima because of his nine wins last year and because of his past experiences.

Takahiro Norimoto was also under consideration, but Nashida did not want to make any large changes to the rotation. He was also a little worried because Norimoto is still fresh off the World Baseball Classic.

Source: Nikkan Sports 3/27/2017, Daily Sports 3/27/2017, Sponichi 3/27/2017

See also:


[3/27/2017] Yomiuri Giants opening day start: Sugano out, Mikolas in

Yoshinobu Takahashi told people at a team gathering earlier today that Miles Mikolas will start the home opener on March 31 and Tomoyuki Sugano the road opener on April 4. Takahashi decided to make the change because Sugano participated in the World Baseball Classic.

Mikolas was in the United States for the birth of his first child. He returned to Japan on March 26. He rejoined the team today for Ichi-gun practices at Tokyo Dome and tossed a bullpen session.

Source: Nikkan Sports 3/27/2017, Nikkan Sports 3/27/2017, Daily Sports 3/27/2017, Sponichi 3/27/2017

See also:


[3/27/2017] Yomiuri Giants sign Kyosuke Takagi to Ikusei contract

The Yomiuri Giants announced today that they signed Kyosuke Takagi to an Ikusei contract after the NPB commissioner’s office accepted his request to be reinstated. He was assigned the uniform number 028 (starting over from zero plus his old uniform number).

The league discovered Takagi was involved in a gambling ring last year and issued a suspension that would last at least one year. The suspension tentatively ended on March 21. There was no guarantee he would be allowed back into the league, but the NPB commissioner accepted and approved his application.

Takagi spoke at a press conference held earlier today and again apologized for the things he did. He said he understood the gravity of his actions and promised never to gamble again. He said he knew it was not going to be easy to make up for all the wrongs he committed, but also felt that his only chance to make things right was through baseball.

Source: Yomiuri 3/27/2017, Daily Sports 3/27/2017, Daily Sports 3/27/2017Sponichi 3/27/2017, Nikkan Sports 3/27/2017, Nikkan Sports 3/27/2017, Tokyo Sports 3/27/2017

[UPDATE 3/28 @ 10:29pm]

Takagi’s Ikusei contract will be worth between 2.3 and 2.4 million yen (estimate).

Source: Nikkan Sports 3/28/2017, Sponichi 3/28/2017


[3/26/2017] 89th Spring Koshien stats updated

Koshien Stats has been updated with games from March 26.


Exhibition Game: Chiba Lotte Marines 2 – Yomiuri Giants 0 (March 26, 2017)

Chiba Lotte Marines vs Yomiuri Giants @ Tokyo Dome – 14:00

  1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Lotte 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 1 0 2 7 0
Yomiuri 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 4 1

Attendance: 35874 | Time: 2h26m



[3/26/2017] Tomoyuki Sugano could be replaced as opening day starter

Tomoyuki Sugano is still slated to get the opening day start on March 31, but could be replaced if he needs a little more time to rest (not just physically, but also mentally and emotionally) after participating in the World Baseball Classic. If he is replaced, his first start of the regular season will most likely be pushed back to the Yokohama at Yokohama series that begins on April 4.

Source: Sanspo 3/26/2017, Sponichi 3/26/2017


[3/26/2017] Ginjiro Sumitani leaves game after twisting ankle

Ginjiro Sumitani hit a double during his first at bat in the third inning of today’s exhibition game against the Yokohama Bay Stars. He made his way over to third base on a sac bunt, but tumbled over when his foot got stuck in the dirt and lightly twisted his left ankle. He still reached third safely and was replaced by a pinch-runner as a precaution.

Source: Nikkan Sports 3/26/2017


[3/26/2017] Takayuki Kishi’s opening day start could be in jeopardy

The Rakuten Eagles announced today that Takayuki Kishi was examined at a hospital in Tokyo and diagnosed with influenza B. He was recently named this year’s opening day starter, but might end up having to miss the game.

Japhet Amador (March 22) and Yuichi Adachi (March 23) are also out with influenza B.

Source: Daily Sports 3/26/2017, Daily Sports 3/26/2017, Sports Hochi 3/26/2017


[3/26/2017] Nippon Ham Fighters to continue supporting Akaihane Kyodo Bokin

The Nippon Ham Fighters have been donating money to the Akaihane Kyodo Bokin (Community Chest of Hokkaido) since 2009. They donated about 1.6 million yen last year based on various season totals. The Fighters will continue to donate money this year.



[3/26/2017] Desire to play in Majors grows stronger for Kazuhisa Makita

Kazuhisa Makita rejoined the Seibu Lions on March 25. He told reporters back in 2014 that he wanted to play in the Majors at some point in the future. The desire got a little stronger after this year’s World Baseball Classic appearance.

Assuming no time off the active roster, Makita should be able to earn his domestic free agent option this season. He turned down a multi-year contract this winter and might be mulling over a chance of scenery, but if he is serious about the Majors, he might get their quicker by staying with the Lions.

Source: Sports Hochi 3/26/2017, Sponichi 3/26/2017, Sanspo 3/26/2017

Don't forget to check these out!
NPB Standings [Full]
Hiroshima 143 89 52 2
Yomiuri 143 71 69 3
Yokohama 143 69 71 3
Hanshin 143 64 76 3
Yakult 143 64 78 1
Chunichi 143 58 82 3
Nippon Ham 143 87 53 3
Softbank 143 83 54 6
Lotte 143 72 68 3
Seibu 143 64 76 3
Rakuten 143 62 78 3
Orix 143 57 83 3