Sho Nakata blasted the 200th home run of his career during a game against the Rakuten Eagles at Sapporo Dome on August 24. He is the 103rd player in NPB history and the first Heisei player (players born on or after January 8, 1989) to reach the milestone. He joined Isao Harimoto, Koichi Tabuchi, and Michihiro Ogasawara as the only Japanese players in NPB to reach 200 home runs without any sac hits.
Home run 200 came in the fifth inning off Hiroki Kondo.0 Comments
Twenty-nine-year-old Sho Nakata earned his international free agent option on August 6 with nine years of service time on the active roster.0 Comments
Sho Nakata started May 9 with 997 career hits. He went 3-for-5 against the Orix Buffaloes at Kyocera Dome Osaka and became the 291st player in NPB history to reach 1,000 hits (4421st career plate appearance).
The milestone hit came in the sixth inning off Orix’s Keisuke Kobayashi.0 Comments
Sho Nakata tweaked his lower back during an exhibition game on March 13. He did not play on March 14 and was examined at a hospital and given a shot to deal with the pain.
Source: Sanspo 3/16/20180 Comments
Sho Nakata felt some discomfort while playing catch on February 5 (local time) and was later examined at a hospital. The Nippon Ham Fighters do not think Nakata’s condition is serious. They believe he will be fine if they shut him down from throwing for a few days.
[UPDATE 2/7 @ 4:10pm]
Nakata was examined at a hospital in Arizona on February 5 and 6 (local time) and diagnosed with inflammation in his right shoulder. He will be shut down from throwing at least until the start of the third block of camp on February 10.
[UPDATE 2/9 @ 2:38pm]
Nakata ended practices early on January 8 to get an injection to help him deal with the pain.
Source: Nikkan Sports 2/9/20180 Comments
Sho Nakata held a press conference at the Nippon Ham Fighters’ offices on November 14 and announced that he decided not to exercise his free agent option. He told the press that he was able to make the decision after talking it over with his family. He also told the press that he found it difficult to leave after having such a disappointing season.
According to media reports, Nakata agreed to a one-year deal worth an estimated 200 million yen plus incentives (down eighty million yen from this year).
Twenty-eight-year-old Sho Nakata is still not sure what he is going to do with his free agent option, but did tell the media on October 9 that it would be nice to “listen to different kinds of things.”
Nakata has been linked to the Hanshin Tigers, but they could lose interest fairly quickly depending on whom they manage to draft and whether or not they have strong leads on players overseas. It could be a fairly big gamble for Nakata to become a free agent this year, when one more season with the Fighters will allow him to obtain an international option. But staying with the Fighters will also most likely mean having to take a pay cut.
[UPDATE 11/5 @ 12:14pm]
Nakata has met with the Fighters a number of times since the end of the regular season. There is a chance he will stay without exercising his option. Part of it might have something to do with the season he had, as well as the team’s overall performance this year.
Source: Sports Hochi 11/5/2017
[UPDATE 11/14 @ 12:39am]
Nakata is planning to tell the Fighters what he is planning to do with his free agent option when he sits down to talk to them on November 14.
Source: Sanspo 11/13/2017
[UPDATE 11/14 @ 3:30pm]
The Fighters may have offered Nakata an estimated salary of 200 million yen in 2018 (down about 80 million yen from this year).
Source: Nikkan Sports 11/14/20170 Comments
Sho Nakata was hit by a pitch on his left hand during a game against Rakuten on September 7. He was able to play on September 8 and 9, but sat out Sunday’s (September 10) game against Seibu at MetLife Dome because he still had some lingering pain. He was in the dugout for the game.
The Nippon Ham Fighters decided to give Nakata some extra rest because he suffered a fissure fracture under similar circumstances on the same hand in 2013.0 Comments
According to an article posted at Sanspo, the Hanshin Tigers may have decided to pass on Sho Nakata after discussions between the front office and Tomoaki Kanemoto ended with the conclusion that the slugger would not be a very cost effective solution to improving their offense during the upcoming off-season.
The Tigers have been interested in Nakata since he was a high school prospect (they tried to draft him in 2007). Rumors of him joining the team as a free agent intensified after Kanemoto returned to the organization as manager in 2016 and culminated just before the start of the Summer Koshien this year. However, it seems the Tigers may have had a change of heart after an internal meeting in Tokyo during an extended summer road trip in August. They are apparently concerned about his number this season. They could also lose a player since Nakata will be an A-level free agent.
With the money they save, the Tigers will probably look to options overseas. The Sanspo article points to Chunichi’s Alex Guerrero as a possibility.
Source: Sanspo 9/3/2017
[UPDATE 9/5 @ 3:35pm]
Sports Hochi is now also reporting that the Tigers will probably pass on Nakata because they have other options at the positions he can play.
Daily Sports mentions that the Tigers might be more interested in pitching help.
[UPDATE 9/11 @ 3:12pm]
The Buffaloes apparently have no interest in Nakata at this time because they already have options at first base and designated hitter.
Source: Nikkan Sports 9/11/20170 Comments