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Okamoto, Kazuma 岡本 和真 (おかもと・かずま)
Yomiuri Giants | #38 | INF
Born: 06/29/1996 (age 22)
Height: 185cm
Weight: 96kg
Bats: R
Throws: R
Blood Type: A
Hometown: Nara
Draft: 2014, 1st Round
History: 智弁学園高(甲)
Roster Changes: added 05/26/2016, removed 06/03/2016, added 10/09/2016
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[1/15/2018] Kazuma Okamoto involved in accident with bike

The Yomiuri Giants announced on January 15 that Kazuma Okamoto was involved in an accident. Okamoto was driving his car in Tama Ward, Kawasaki on the evening of January 13 when he hit a teen-aged male riding a bike at an intersection.

The teen-aged male suffered a chip fracture in his right thumb. Okamoto did not get hurt.

The Giants released a statement from Okamoto. He apologized for the accident and said he was going to refrain from driving for a while. The Giants also issued an apology. They are planning to have all players and staff review safe driving practices and traffic rules.

Source: Daily Sports 1/15/2018, Sponichi 1/15/2018, Nikkan Sports 1/15/2018

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[12/7/2017] Yomiuri Giants: uniform number changes

The Yomiuri Giants announced the following uniform number changes on December 7:

Source: Yomiuri 12/7/2017

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Kazuma Okamoto: Did You Know

Milestones

2018

August 4 vs Chunichi at Nagoya Dome – Okamoto recorded his twentieth home run of the season and became the fifth player in Giants history to hit twenty home runs in one year during or before the season they turned twenty-two. The other four players: Shigeo Nagashima (1958), Sadaharu Oh (1962), Hideki Matsui (1994-1996), and Hayato Sakamoto (2010).

Source: Sponichi 8/5/2018, Nikkan Sports 8/5/2018

September 8 vs Hanshin at Koshien Stadium – Okamoto blasted his thirtieth home run of the year (fourth in as many games) and joined Sadaharu Oh, Hideki Matsui, and Hayato Sakamoto as the only players in Giants history to hit thirty home runs during the season they turned twenty-two.

Source: Sponichi 9/8/2018, Daily Sports 9/8/2018

October 9 vs Hanshin at Koshien Stadium – Okamoto went 2-for-5 with two home runs and three RBI. He pushed his home run total to thirty-three and his RBI total to 100. At twenty-two-years and three months, Okamoto became the youngest player in NPB history to bat .300 with thirty home runs and 100 RBI. The previous record of twenty-three years and two months was set by Tetsuto Yamada in 2015. He also became the youngest player in NPB history to record 100 RBI.

Okamoto played in all 143 games this season. He is the first Giant twenty-two or under to play in every game of the season since Hayato Sakamoto in 2008.

Source: Nikkan Sports 10/9/2018, Sponichi 10/9/2018, Sakamoto 10/9/2018, Daily Sports 10/9/2018, Sanspo 10/9/2018


Miscellaneous

2017

Okamoto’s uniform number will change from 38 to 25 for the 2018 season. He will become the thirtieth player in Yomiuri Giants history to wear the number.

Source: Sponichi 11/19/2017

Okamoto wanted to become a pastry chef when he was a child.

Source: Nikkan Sports 12/4/2017

2018

June 2 vs Orix at Kyocera Dome – Okamoto became the eighty-ninth player to bat clean-up for the Yomiuri Giants. At twenty-one years and eleven months, he also became the first Yomiuri player under twenty-two to bat clean-up since Hideki Matsui on August 25, 1995 at twenty-one years and two months. He is the eleventh player in Yomiuri history to hit a home run in their first game as a clean-up hitter and fourth player to hit a home run in their trip to the plate as a clean-up hitter. The other three Yomiuri players that hit home runs in their first plate appearance as a clean-up hitter: Isao Shibata in 1969, Davey Johnson in 1976, and Shinnosuke Abe in 2007.

Source: Daily Sports 6/2/2018, Nikkan Sports 6/3/2018, Sponichi 6/3/2018

October 23 – Tatsunori Hara told reporters one of the first things he wanted to do as new manager of the Yomiuri Giants was to get Okamoto to give up smoking.

Source: Sponichi 10/24/2018


Equipment

Nobuhiko Matsunaka gave Okamoto a bat during his first year after turning pro. Okamoto likes the way the bat feels now and is planning to use a similar model in 2018. The new bat, made by Under Armour, is 900 grams and weighted toward the head. Okamoto used the bat during Miyazaki fall camp in November 2017.

Source: Sponichi 12/17/2017

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[4/22/2017] Kazuma Okamoto taken off active roster on April 21

Kazuma Okamoto was taken off the active roster on April 21 because he was not feeling well due to a fever. He did not participate in Ni-gun practices on April 21 and instead rested.

Source: Sponichi 4/22/2017

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[1/1/2017] Kazuma Okamoto, Daisuke Nakai get married

The Yomiuri Giants announced today that Kazuma Okamoto (20) filed marriage papers with a twenty-two-year-old woman from Kanagawa on December 25, 2016.

Source: Daily Sports 1/1/2017, Sponichi 1/1/2017

The media learned on December 31 that Daisuke Nakai (27) filed marriage papers in Mie on January 1 with a twenty-eight-year-old woman living Tokyo.

Source: Nikkan Sports 1/1/2017, Sponichi 1/1/2017

 

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[10/12/2016] Yomiuri Giants planning to send three players to play winter ball in Puerto Rico

The Yomiuri Giants are planning to send Kazuma Okamoto, Hayato Takagi, and Kentaro Taira to play winter ball in Puerto Rico. Plans will become official as soon as all the paperwork clears. The Giants are hoping the overseas experience will help push them up to the next level.

Source: Sponichi 10/12/2016

[UPDATE 10/26 @ 6:09pm]

The Giants announced today that Takagi, Taira, and Okamoto will be sent to Puerto Rico from October 27 until early- to mid-December. They will be working out with the Gigantes de Carolina. Whether or not they get playing time has not yet been determined.

Source: Yomiuri announcement

[UPDATE 10/28 @ 2:41am]

Takagi, Taira, Okamoto, and Ni-gun training coach Yushi Aida left for Puerto Rico out of Narita Airport on October 27.

Source: Sanspo 10/27/2016

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[7/29/2016] Kazuma Okamoto taking things slow after taking pitch off right calf

Kazuma Okamoto was hit by a pitch on his right calf during his at bat in the third inning of a Ni-gun game against Rakuten at Giants Stadium on July 27. He was out of the line-up again on July 28 and did not participate in practices. The Yomiuri Giants might have Okamoto take things slow for a while out of concern that it might turn into something more serious, like a strain.

Source: Sponichi 7/29/2016

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