Norimoto, Takahiro 則本 昂大 (のりもと・たかひろ)
Rakuten Eagles | #14 | P
Born: 12/16/1990 (age 29)
Height: 178cm
Weight: 82kg
Bats: L
Throws: R
Blood Type: A
Hometown: Shiga
Draft: 2012, 2nd Round
History: 八幡商高-三重中京大

[3/8/2019] Takahiro Norimoto to have elbow cleaned out

The Rakuten Eagles announced that Takahiro Norimoto will have his right elbow cleaned out at a hospital in Tokyo on March 11. Norimoto decided to have the surgery after he was examined at a hospital earlier this month. A timetable for his recovery will be released after he goes under the knife.

Source: Sports Hochi 3/8/2019, Nikkan Sports 3/8/2019, Sponichi 3/8/2019, Daily Sports 3/8/2019, Daily Sports 3/8/2019, ZakZak 3/8/2019, Sanspo 3/8/2019

[UPDATE 3/13 @ 11:07am]

The Eagles announced on March 12 that Norimoto had surgery on his elbow on March 11 and will require about four months for a full recovery.

Source: Rakuten 3/12/2019, Daily Sports 3/12/2019, Sponichi 3/13/2019, Nikkan Sports 3/12/2019


[4/7/2018] Takahiro Norimoto reaches 1,000 strikeout milestone

Takahiro Norimoto recorded the 1,000th strikeout of his career during a game against the Softbank Hawks at Rakuten Seimei Park on April 6. He became the 147 pitcher in NPB history to reach the milestone. It took Norimoto 958 innings to reach 1,000 strikeouts. Only four other pitchers reached 1,000 in fewer winnings: Kyuji Fujikawa, Hideo Nomo, Kazuhisa Ishii, and Yutaka Enatsu. Former Rakuten ace, Masahiro Tanaka, needed 1,042 innings.

1,000 strikeouts in 1,000 or fewer innings

Source: Daily Sports 4/6/2018, Sponichi 4/7/2018, Nikkan Sports 4/7/2018, Sports Hochi 4/6/2018


[6/22/2017] Takahiro Norimoto could make next start on ten days of rest

Masataka Nashida wants to give Takahiro Norimoto a little room to relax after his strikeout streak (eight consecutive starts with at least ten strikeouts). He made his last start on June 15 against the Yakult Swallows. His next turn could come on ten days of rest on June 26 against the Orix Buffaloes at Kobo Park Miyagi.

Source: Sponichi 6/22/2017


[6/8/2017] Takahiro Norimoto extends strikeout streak to eight

Takahiro Norimoto struck out twelve in a complete game victory over the Yokohama Bay Stars at Kobo Park tonight. He recorded his tenth strikeout in the eighth and notched two more in the ninth. He has now recorded at least ten strikeouts in each of his last eight consecutive starts.

Consecutive Starts with at Least Ten Strikeouts


[6/7/2017] Nihon Seimei MVP of the Month Awards for May

Central League


Tomoyuki Sugano, Yomiuri (Third Time)
5 G, 3-2, 37.0 IP, 2.68 ERA, 31 SO, 11 ER

Sugano led the league with three victories (tied with two others). The three victories were a shutout, one run over eight innings, and seven shutout innings. He recorded the shutout win on May 2 against Yokohama at Tokyo Dome and became the first pitcher since Masaki Saito in 1989 to string together three shutout victories in a row. He also notched his fiftieth career victory during the win he recorded when he gave up a run over eight innings. Sugano is the first Yomiuri pitcher to record an MVP of the Month since Kazuto Taguchi in July 2016.


Dayan Viciedo, Chunichi (Second Time)
25 G, .341 AVG, 30 H, 8 HR, 25 RBI

Viciedo played in all his team’s games in May and batted .341 (fourth in the league) with eight home runs (third) and twenty-five RBI (first). His seven shukunda’s (hits that drove in the first run of the game, game-tying run, go-ahead run, come-from-behind run) were good for a first place tie. He blasted a walk-off home run against Hiroshima on May 19. Teammate Yohei Oshima won the MVP of the Month last month.

Pacific League


Takahiro Norimoto, Rakuten (Second Time)
4 G, 4-0, 32.0 IP, 2.25 ERA, 1 CG, 1 ShO, 46 SO, 8 ER

Norimoto started four games in May and led the league with four victories (tied with one other). He tossed a shutout victory against Lotte on May 10 (12 SO, 5 H, 1 BB). He struck out twelve against Orix on May 3 and Nippon Ham on May 17 and ten against Orix on May 25. Including the last four games he pitched in April (ten against Seibu on the 19th and ten against Lotte on the 26th), he recorded ten or more strikeouts in six consecutive starts.


Brandon Laird, Nippon Ham (Second Time)
23 G, .333 AVG, 27 H, 10 HR, 27 RBI

Laird batted fifth in all of his team’s games in May. He led the league in slugging (.753), RBI (twenty-seven), and home runs (ten, tied with two others) and his sixty-one totals bases were second most in the league. His team won all seven games in which he drove two or more runs. He blasted home runs in four consecutive at bats spanning two games on May 12 and 13.

Nippon Ham players have now won the award seventy-one times, tied for most in league history with Orix.

Source: NPB 6/7/2017


[5/25/2017] Takahiro Norimoto strikes out ten against Orix, ties NPB record

Takahiro Norimoto struck out ten in eight innings against the Orix Buffaloes at Hotto Motto Field Kobe tonight and became just the second pitcher in NPB history to record at least ten strikeouts in six consecutive starts. The other pitcher was Hideo Nomo in 1991.

Norimoto had seven strikeouts through the first seven innings of the game. He then struck out the side in the eighth to push his total to ten.


Takahiro Norimoto: Did You Know



September 24 vs Softbank at YafuOku Dome – Norimoto racked up his 200th strikeout of the season when he struck out Alfredo Despaigne in the fourth inning. He became the ninth pitcher in NPB history to record at least 200 strikeouts in four consecutive seasons, first since Hideo Nomo between 1990 and 1993.

Source: Sponichi 9/24/2017

October 8 vs Softbank at Kobo Park Miyagi – Norimoto struck out eight and pushed his season total to 222. He is in line to become the fourth pitcher in NPB history to win his fourth straight strikeout title.

Source: Sports Hochi 10/8/2017, Daily Sports 10/8/2017, Sponichi 10/8/2017


May 19 vs Nippon Ham at Sapporo Dome – Norimoto became the 349th pitcher in NPB history to reach 1,000 innings pitched after completing the fourth inning. He is the third pitcher in Eagles’ franchise history to reach the milestone, behind Masahiro Tanaka and Hisashi Iwakuma.

Source: Sports Hochi 5/19/2018, Sponichi 5/19/2018

September 6 vs Orix at Hotto Motto Kobe – Norimoto struck out fourteen for the thirty-seventh double-digit strikeout game of his career (beginning in 2013: one, seven, six, seven, ten, and six). He became the fourteenth pitcher in NPB history to record at least thirty-seven double-digit strikeout games and just the sixth pitcher (behind Hideo Nomo’s second year, Yutaka Enatsu fourth year, Masaichi Kaneda’s sixth year, Yu Darvish’s sixth year) to accomplish the feat before the end of their sixth year.

Source: Nikkan Sports 9/6/2018, Nikkan Sports 9/7/2018, Sponichi 9/6/2018, Sponichi 9/7/2018, Sanspo 9/7/2018



Norimoto is interested in playing in the Majors. He participated in an event sponsored by Adidas on December 18 and told fans that he one day wanted to go and that he felt it was good to chase after your dreams.

Source: Daily Sports 12/18/2016


Norimoto was named a JRA Fukushima Racecourse’s 100th Anniversary ambassador on March 15.

Source: JRA 3/15/2018, Daily Sports 3/16/2018, Sports Hochi 3/16/2018

MLB Dreams


Dcember 1 – Norimoto told reporters after final salary negotiations for 2019 that he had no time to think about the MLB and that his top priorities were to help the Rakuten Eagles win a championship and to play in the 2020 Olympics.

Source: Nikkan Sports 12/1/2018

Relationships and Family


Norimoto’s wife gave birth to the couple’s second child, a girl weighing 3,218 grams, at a hospital in Shiga on September 26.

Source: Rakuten 9/28/2018, Sports Hochi 9/28/2018, Sanspo 9/28/2018, Sponichi 9/28/2018


[12/2/2016] Takahiro Norimoto to sign new three-year deal

Takahiro Norimoto met the Rakuten Eagles on November 30 for salary negotiations. The media learned that he agreed to a three-year deal that also includes a clause that guarantees a sit-down with the club about the posting system after the last year of the contract in 2019.

Norimoto currently does not have a strong desire to play in the Majors, but apparently wants to keep his options open in case he changes his mind.

Source: Daily Sports 12/2/2016


[5/11/2016] Takahiro Norimoto’s next few starts

According to Sponichi, Takahiro Norimoto’s next few starts after May 12 could come on May 18 against Orix, May 24 against Seibu, and May 31 against Hanshin.

Source: Sponichi 5/12/2016


[4/8/2016] Takahiro Norimoto sets new NPB record

Takahiro Norimoto won his start against Nippon Ham on April 8 and struck out eleven in eight innings. He joined Hideo Nomo (1994, three games) and Yu Darvish (2010, five games) as the only pitchers in NPB history to record ten or more strikeouts in three consecutive outings, beginning on opening day. He also became the only pitcher in NPB history to win three straight, beginning with the opening day game, and strike out ten or more in each game.

Source: Sports Hochi 4/8/2016, Sponichi 4/8.2016