The Yomiuri Giants made two player announcements on July 7.
The Giants announced that they decided to terminate twenty-three-year-old Takahiro Kakizawa’s contract after they found out he stole about 110 pieces of baseball equipment from the Yomiuri Giants Stadium locker rooms (twelve times between May 2 and June 21) and then sold them off at second-hand brand reseller shops (two shops in Tokyo for a total of around one million yen). Among some of the items: about forty bats, including those belonging to Shinnosuke Abe, Hisayoshi Chono, Hayato Sakamoto, Dai-Kang Yoh, and Seiji Kobayashi; around twenty gloves, including those belonging to Tomoyuki Sugano and Kazuma Okamoto; and roughly thirty uniforms, including those belonging to Casey McGehee, Yoshiyuki Kamei, and Seishu Hatake.
The incident came to light when a player found another player’s uniform listed at an online auction in late-June. The Giants followed with an internal investigation and found security camera footage of Kakizawa taking items from the team locker room. When officials confronted him, he admitted to taking the items and said that he took the items because he was having financial problems.
Kakizawa was selected by the Rakuten Eagles in the sixth round of the 2012 draft. He was sent to the Yomiuri Giants in a trade for Yuki Koyama in December 2016.
The Giants also announced that they fined and suspended twenty-seven-year-old Genki Kawano and twenty-eight-year-old Shimpei Shinohara for inappropriate behavior.
Shinohara and Kawano were at a gathering of about ten men and women in a private room at a restaurant in June. Shinohara got drunk and took off almost all of his clothes. Kawano took a video of Shinohara and uploaded it to his Instagram account (restricted to followers only).
Hayato Sakamoto was also at the gathering, but left but Shinohara stripped naked. Sakamoto was issued a stern warning.
Source: Yomiuri (Kakizawa) 7/7/2018, Daily Sports 7/7/2018, Daily Sports 7/7/2018, Tokyo Sports 7/7/2018, Daily Sports 7/7/2018, Sponichi 7/7/2018, Sanspo 7/7/2018, Nikkan Sports 7/7/2018, Yomiuri (Kawano, Shinohara) 7/7/2018, Sanspo 7/7/2018, Tokyo Sports 7/7/2018, Daily Sports 7/7/2018, Daily Sports 7/7/2018, Nikkan Sports 7/7/2018, Nikkan Sports 7/7/2018
[UPDATE 8/11 @ 12:46am]
The Giants announced that they decided to lift the suspensions that were given to Shinohara and Kawano, effective August 10. The two players will continue to pay fines out of their wages.0 Comments
The Yomiuri Giants and Rakuten Eagles announced today that they agreed on a one-for-one player trade that will send twenty-seven-year-old pitcher Yuki Koyama up North for twenty-two-year-old infielder Takahiro Kakizawa.
[UPDATE 12/5 @ 5:53pm]
The Giants held a press conference for Kakizawa at the team offices in Otemachi on December 5. He was assigned the uniform number 59.
Source: Yomiuri announcement
[UPDATE 12/6 @ 6:04pm]
The Eagles held a press conference for Koyama at Kobo Stadium on December 6. He was assigned the uniform number 63.
Source: Daily Sports 12/6/20160 Comments
Takahiro Kakizawa, Rakuten
16 G, 21-for-41, 0 HR, 9 RBI, 1 SB, .477 BA
Kakizawa played mostly second base in July. He led the league in batting average. He played a big part in the team’s 11-6 finish in July. He was added to the seventy-man roster on July 31.
Go Kamamoto, Softbank
18 G, 24-for-69, 0 HR, 12 RBI, 4 SB, .400 BA
Kamamoto made the starting line-up in sixteen of his team’s eighteen games in July. He led the league in batting average and hits. He was tied for first in RBI and stolen bases. His on base percentage (.456) and slugging percentage (.583) were also top in the league.0 Comments
The Rakuten Eagles announced that they added Ikusei player Takahiro Kakizawa to their seventy-man roster. His uniform number will change from 051 to 94.
Source: Rakuten announcement