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ScottyJSno
Aug 16, 2010


Welcome to the Nippon Pro Baseball thread!






wikipedia posted:

Nippon Professional Baseball consists of two leagues, the Central League and the Pacific League. There are also two secondary-level professional minor leagues, the Eastern League and the Western League, that play shorter schedules.

The season starts in late March or early April, and ends in October, with two or three all-star games in July. In recent decades prior to 2007, the two leagues each scheduled between 130 and 140 regular season games, with the 146 games played by the Central League in 2005 and 2006 being the only exception. Both leagues have since adopted a 146-game schedule. In general, Japanese teams play six games a week, with every Monday off.[1]

Following the conclusion of each regular season the best teams from each league go on to play in the "Nippon Series" or Japan Series.

In 2004, the Pacific League played five fewer games than the Central League teams during the regular season and used a new playoff format to determine its champion (and which team would advance to the Japan Series). The teams in third and second place played in a best-two-of-three series (all at the second place team's home ground) with the winner of that series going on to play the first place team in a best-three-of-five format at its home ground. In 2006, the Central League adopted the Pacific League's tournament as well, and the tournament became known as the Climax Series with the two winners, one from each league, competing in the Japan Series.

Spring training games start from Feb. 25 (sat) - Mar. 26 (sun).

Opening day is Mar. 31 (fri).

From here on out I am going to try and write a team summery for each team based on their rankings from 2016, from worst to best. I have not paid the NPB hardly any notice until very recently, so if I get something wrong or you have anything to add let me know!

Central League
#6 Chunichi Dragons

Pacific League
#5 Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles
#6 Orix Buffaloes

ScottyJSno fucked around with this message at 01:33 on Feb 17, 2017

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ScottyJSno
Aug 16, 2010


Orix Buffaloes









2016 Record
57-83 (3 Ties) .407% and 30 games behind 1st.
6th place in the Pacific League.

Last Championship
Pacific League Pennant - 1996
Japan Series Championship - 1996
Drought - 21 years

Ballpark
Osaka Dome (Osaka)
Side note – I saw The Who play here 10 years ago or so





Corporate sponsor
Orix Corporation. A Investment Banking Corp. They are also the chief operators of the Kansai Region’s International Airports (Osaka)

Uniforms



Projected lineup

1 – 2B *Masahiro Nishino (26) .264/.335/331

Nishino was 7th round draft pick out of the Industrial Leagues in 2014, where he was defensive award winning 2B. Masahiro Nishino played his first full season in the NPB in 2016.



2 – SS Ryoichi Adachi (29) .273/.344/.323

Adachi became the full time SS in 2013. He has only recently shown signs of his bat waking up. In July of 2016 he won the Monthly MVP award for racking up 30 hits and a .380 batting average.



3 – LF *Masataka Yoshida (23) .290/.360/.494 in 63 games

Masataka Yoshida was a 2015 1st round pick out of Toho University. In the 2016 season he started the season with 6 consecutive games with hits, which tied the drafted rookie record. He was also the first rookie DH since 2002. Unfortunately he suffered a back injury at the end of April, and was out until August. When he returned the power started to show, he finished the season with 10 HR the most by an Orix rookie since 1969 He has been called the future of the Orix Buffaloes.



4 – 1B *Takahiro Okada (26) .284/.357/.471

Okada a first round draftee out high school in 2005 is probably Orix’s most popular player. He is known for his big size, bat speed and power hitting. Winner of the Pacific League MVP in 2010 and a Gold Glove at 1B in 2014. Reported to be in the “best shape of his life” after dropping from 104kg to 98kg this off-season. Nicknamed T-Okada to differentiate his name from the manager with the same name.



5 – RF Stefen Romero (28) .304/.361/.541 with AAA Tacoma

The Seattle Mariners selected Romero in the 12th round of the 2010 Major League Baseball Draft. After cracking uthe MLB in 2014 and putting up a career -1.4 WAR with Seattle, he joined Orix this off season. His AAA numbers being what caught Orix’s attention, .902 OPS with 21 HR.



6 – DH Hiroyuki Nakajima (34) .290/.346/.439

Nakajima debut with the Seibu Lions in 2002. There he distinguished himself winning 3 gold gloves SS, 3 all-star games, and the Japanese silver slugger 4 times in 10 years. He was also the second SS in NPB history to have over 100 RBIs. Best known for his power bat and base stealing skills, he was also known to clash with management over perceived contract problems. In 2010 he requested to be posted to the USA and management ignored his request. He request was granted the following year, but could not reach an agreement with the NY Yankees. Then in 2012 he exercised his international FA rights and signed with the Oakland As. Never cracking the MLB level, he returned to Japan and joined Orix in 2015.



7 – 3B Brent Morel (29) .244/.319/.364

Brent Morel is a average player. In 6 MLB seasons he 62 OPS+ and 0.5 WAR. In NPB last year he has a .683 OPS. With no other 3B options it likely he will start there. He has been described as being “average” at 3B by Japanese commentators.



8 – C Hikaru Ito (27) .241/.257/.326

An 8 year veteran at C, Ito is known for good defense and a strong arm. Has a career 20% strike out rate.



9 – CF *Shuhei Kojima (29) .246/.289/.307

Drafted in 2011 out of the Industrial leagues, Kojima got his first major playing time in 2016. After fantastic start in 2016 hitting .423 until May, he fell back to earth with wet fart to end the year with a .246 BA.



Projected Starting Pitching and Notable Relief Pitching

Yuki Nishi (26) 10-12 4.14 ERA / 1.325 WHIP / 7.8 K/9 / 2.25 K/BB / 2.96 FIP

Nishi became a regular starter starting in 2011. Throws a 87mph fastball, slider, curve, and a change-up. Was known as the “Smile Prince” due to his frequent grinning on the mound. Has the phrase “It’s OK” written on his cap. This is a mantra of sorts and he can be seen chanting it to himself on the mound.



Brandon Dickson (32) 9-11 4.36 ERA / 1.482 WHIP / 7.3 K/9 / 1.96 K/BB / 3.93 FIP

Dickerson was an un-drafted free agent signing by the St Louis Cardinals in 2006. After 7 lackluster seasons in the Cards system and only making the show for 14.2 innings, he made the move to Orix in 2013. He throws a 92mph Fastball, a 74mph Knuckle Curve, slider and change-up. In 2016 he had an NPB leading grounder rate of 63.4%, and a grounder to fly ratio" of 2.36.



Chihiro Kaneko (33) 7-9 3.83 ERA / 1.247 WHIP / 6.9 K/9 / 2.12 K/BB / 3.56 FIP

Kaneko is 10 veteran with Orix. He holds the team record for lest amount of losses upon reaching 100 wins.(56) He has 89mph fastball, a 12-6 curve, and a power sinker. Before pitching to the top batters, he takes pose of bringing both hands to the bill of his cap ", “This is because you can center your mind, and you do not want the camera to see what you are saying to yourself."



*Takahiro Matsuba (26) 7-9 3.26 ERA / 1.274 WHIP / 5.6 K/9 / 2.00 K/BB / 3.67 FIP

Matsuba is a #1 draft pick from 2012. Known for being able to change speed of his pitches wildly. He throws 92 mph fastball, a slider, a curve, and a fork-ball.



*Phil Coke (34) 5-3 2.96 ERA / 1.271 WHIP / 7.8 K/9 / 2.90 K/BB with AAA Scranton in 70 innings

Coke’s last full season of MLB baseball was in 2014 where he posted a 5–2 record with 41 strikeouts and a 3.88 ERA in 58 innings pitched. He throws mainly four-seam and two-seam fastballs at around 93mph.



Yoshihisa Hirano (32) 31 Saves 1.92 ERA / 0.984 WHIP / 8.4 K/9 / 3.56 K/BB / 2.32 FIP

Hirano is Orix’s premier RP. Throws a fork ball, a slider, a curve and a 92 mph fastball. He is a 2 time RP of the year.



Taisuke Yamaoka (21) 2016 #1 Draft pick

Yamaoka is starting the year on the 2-Gun team. It is expect that he will get some playing time on the NPB team this year.



Outlook

The Orix Buffaloes had a rough off-season. First they lost their best hitter, Yoshio Itoi, to the free agency. Then missed out on their replacement target, Dai-Kang Yang. What they ended up with is Stefen Romero, who has 233 MLB plate appearances since 2014. Hopefully his AAA success will enable him to anchor the middle of the order. The Buffaloes desperately need power as they have only one player who has hit more than 10 HRs in the past few seasons. On the pitching side the Buffaloes picked up LHP Phil Coke who had been bouncing around the minors since his last long term stint with the Detriot Tigers in 2014.

On the bright side is the youngster OF Masataka Yoshida. In only 66 games he hit 10 HRs and had an OPS of .854. The Buffaloes also drafted Taisuke Yamaoka out of the Industrial Leagues. The 21 year old, while a bit small at 5’7” 145lb, has 93mph fastball and has been praised by the Ranger’s Yu Darvish.

Final Score

= 3

= 5

= 4

= 4




Looks like another year in the basement.

ScottyJSno fucked around with this message at 05:55 on Feb 15, 2017

ZenVulgarity
Oct 9, 2012

I made the hat by transforming my zen



https://theringer.com/baseball-mlb-...ma-6a0e7d22d39f

quote:

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Ben Lindbergh

Staff Writer, The Ringer

4 days ago

The Most Interesting Man in Baseball Has an Equally Interesting Teammate

Japan’s Shohei Otani has become an international fascination. His fellow Hokkaido Nippon-Ham Fighter Takuya Nakashima isn’t widely known, but he’s an utterly captivating player without a comp — at home or abroad.

(Getty Images/Ringer illustration)



On Tuesday, Japanese pitcher/hitter/superhero Shohei Otani and his Hokkaido Nippon-Ham Fighters manager, Hideki Kuriyama, disappointed people on both sides of the Pacific by announcing that Otani won’t pitch in next month’s World Baseball Classic. On Friday, a second blow landed: Otani, the best pitcher and best hitter in Japan, won’t DH, either, as the right ankle injury that prevents him from pitching also ended his chances of one-way play. For Japanese fans, Otani’s absence is a big blow to a team whose success is a source of significant national pride. For American fans, it means missing an up-close glimpse of the most interesting man in the sport, whose debut on an American mound (and batter’s box) might be a few years away.

Days earlier, one of Otani’s Fighters teammates had sent his own regrets to Japan’s fans, unbeknownst to North America’s. Takuya Nakashima, Hokkaido’s 26-year-old shortstop, became the only player to decline an invitation to join Japan’s national team, opting to focus on his health and preparation for the upcoming Nippon Professional Baseball season rather than return to the international stage. Nakashima is not well known outside of Japan, nor should he be, based on the standard stats: He’s a subpar hitter, less valuable than Otani is as a DH alone. He probably won’t ever be posted or play in the majors, and no, you shouldn’t stash him in your super-deep dynasty league.

If not for Otani, though, Nakashima might be Japan’s most remarkable, improbable player. Last year I labeled Otani a 10-tool player: His abilities broadcast that he’s too good to stay. Nakashima’s success depends on an equally freakish but singular skill, a “one weird trick” that actually works — as long as he doesn’t depart.

It’s easy to forget that Japan plays its own brand of baseball; players flit back and forth between Major League Baseball and Nippon Professional Baseball, and NPB’s talent exceeds Triple-A’s. But if its level of play can be comparable to the majors’, its style is far from the same. And no player drives home the difference more plainly than Nakashima, a dead-ball-era artifact extracted from amber and brought back to life.

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An American League team scout who used to evaluate Japanese players describes Nakashima to me as a “quintessential spark plug.” Think of every slight, speedy, make-contact-and-run type you’ve ever loved or loathed — Gary Pettis and Tom Goodwin, Luis Castillo and Juan Pierre. Nakashima is like them, but perhaps even closer to the spark plug’s Platonic ideal.

As an undersized and underskilled high school player, Nakashima caught the eye of only one scout, who happened to work for the Fighters. Even now, he’s literally light on his feet. Listed at 5-foot-9, 151 pounds — the “1” makes his listed weight seem more credible at a time when every big leaguer’s bulk ends in a multiple of five — Nakashima tipped the scales more softly than all but one MLB player in 2016, 150-pound Ronald Torreyes.

Kazuto Yamazaki, a writer and consultant to NPB statistics site Deltagraphs, says he’s clocked Nakashima close to 3.9 seconds from home to first, a Hamiltonian time that grades out as elite even for a left-handed hitter. Every year, Nakashima’s speed helps him to a handful of runs on the bases; on defense, it makes him a star. According to Deltagraphs, Nakashima led all NPB shortstops with a 15.9 UZR in 2016, and if you’re the type to trust the eye test, both Jason Coskrey of The Japan Times and Jim Allen of Kyodo News confirm that he should have won a Gold Glove last year. That explains most of why Nakashima was worth a few wins in each of the past two seasons.

It’s his hitting, though, that makes him stand out — particularly relative to American players, but even compared to his NPB peers. Although other Japanese batters employ a vaguely similar style, none takes it to the same extremes. Explaining Nakashima takes 10 inconceivable stats.

1. Home Runs: 0

Nakashima, who never cleared an outfield fence as an amateur, has yet to snap his homerless streak after 2,033 NPB plate appearances. Only five MLB players have amassed more plate appearances than Nakashima and finished with no home runs; three of them played in the 1870s, when the baseball became a blackened lump after being battered around for a few innings, and the most recent played almost exclusively when the good players were away at World War II. You can keep your Jason Tyners and Ben Reveres: No MLB player in the post-integration era has started a career with as many homerless plate appearances.

In Japan, Nakashima’s homerless state doesn’t stand out as much: Among active players with zero round-trippers, his PA total trails Yoshifumi Okada, who has him by 400. But don’t worry; we’ve only just begun our descent into Nakashima madness.

2. Isolated Power: .025

This is Bartolo Colón’s career isolated power (batting average subtracted from slugging percentage). It’s also Nakashima’s from 2016, which was in line with his earlier performance: His 2015 ISO was even lower, at .023, and his career mark is .026. Nakashima’s ISO figures from the past two seasons rank fourth lowest and sixth lowest among qualified hitters in NPB history, which dates back to 1950.

Colón, of course, has hit a home run. Nakashima, who hit .243/.333/.268 (81 wRC+) last year and owns a .247/.327/.273 career slash line, is the sort of singles hitter we haven’t seen in the majors since Félix Fermín in 1989. More than 90 percent of Nakashima’s hits last season were singles, and while the overall singles rate was much higher in Japan than it was in MLB (73 percent vs. 65 percent), Nakashima’s still led all qualified hitters in both NPB leagues, the Pacific and the Central.

It’s also strange to see a slash line whose last leg (slugging) is so much lower than its center (OBP). To find a major league hitter who made at least 2,000 plate appearances and retired with a Nakashima-size gulf between his career slugging percentage and career on-base percentage, we have to go back to Floyd Baker, who last played in 1955. The last MLB player with a single-season SLG-OBP gap as large as Nakashima’s in 2016 was an aged Rickey Henderson, who walked his way to a .410 OBP with a .344 SLG in 1996.

3. Ground Ball Rate: 74.4 Percent

Here’s where Nakashima really starts to separate himself from the rest of the known baseball universe. The Pacific League’s ground ball rate (47.5 percent) in 2016 was only slightly higher than MLB’s (44.7 percent). But no one in either burns worms like Nakashima, who produced grounders on nearly three-quarters of his balls in play last season. He’s Willie Mays Hayes after the push-ups plan.

The biggest MLB ground ball guys — Revere, Castillo, Derek Jeter — all topped out in the mid-60s; Revere’s 66.9 percent in 2012 is the highest grounder rate by a qualified hitter in FanGraphs’ batted-ball data, which covers 2002 to 2016. The two qualified relievers with the highest ground ball rate induced over the past three seasons are Zach Britton (77.9 percent) and Brad Ziegler (66.7 percent). Nakashima’s normal is the same as the typical hitter’s production when facing a ground ball god.

Deltagraphs’ data goes back only to 2014, but in that time, the closest any other qualified NPB hitter’s ground ball rate has come to Nakashima (who’s led both leagues in all three seasons for which we have data) is 63.8 percent. We’re already into extreme outlier territory, and the stats only get stranger from here.

4. Pull Rate: 16.2 Percent

Elevating the ball less often than anyone else is only one of the ways in which Nakashima’s spray pattern is strange. On average, major league hitters pull about 40 percent of their batted balls; NPB hitters pull about 35 percent of theirs. Here are the rates at which Nakashima has pulled his batted balls in each of the past three seasons: 17.0 percent, 13.0 percent, 16.2 percent. All three figures are lower than the lowest single-season MLB pull percentage at FanGraphs (Castillo’s 19.3 percent in 2009) or the lowest rate recorded by Deltagraphs for any qualified NPB batter (20.3, by Takero Okajima in 2014). Jim Allen, who’s been collecting NPB play-by-play data from a separate source since 2006, puts Nakashima’s career pull rate almost eight percentage points lower than the closest active NPB player’s.

Now we know why Nakashima has never homered. It’s not just that he lacks power, although that’s part of it. It’s also that his approach almost completely precludes power. He can’t really “run into one,” because he’s already running toward first, having choked up, swung softly, and slapped a grounder to the opposite side. As baseball writer/historian Steven Goldman said when I sent him a video of Nakashima in action, “This guy looks like a photo from 1910.”

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To a degree, Nakashima’s batted-ball distribution is tailored to his native environment. Transplant him to the States, and it would leave him very vulnerable, like an underwater extremophile dropped into a temperate pool. Former major league pitcher Anthony Bass, who played for the Fighters last year, tells me, “Takuya has an advantage in NPB because a majority of playing surfaces are turf, so the ball is like a trampoline.” The average BABIP on ground balls was 10 points higher in the Pacific League than in the majors last season, even though the typical Japanese player probably hit balls less hard. The same change in surface that makes it difficult for Japanese middle infielders to adjust to the majors on defense might also steal some of Nakashima’s singles.

In the States, Nakashima would also be susceptible to another mainstay of modern major league life: unorthodox defense. In Japan, “shifts are exceedingly rare, with anything more than five steps considered extreme,” Allen says. The only team known to move its outfielders much, the Yokohama DeNA BayStars, is managed by a foreigner, former major leaguer Álex Ramírez. “Japanese baseball is conservative, orthodox, and tends to stay within its own M.O.,” Robert Whiting, author of the classic book on Japanese baseball and culture, You Gotta Have Wa, tells me via email. “It takes a while for new wrinkles from MLB to catch on in Japan.”

In 2015, I cowrote a book about running an independent league team that occasionally employed a five-man infield against a batter who hit tons of grounders and rarely pulled flies. The alignment was adventurous, but it made mathematical sense: Why waste a fielder on a spot where the ball isn’t going to go? In the majors, candidates for five-man infields are scarce, but Nakashima could hardly be a better fit for an overloaded left side, as his spray chart reveals.

(Courtesy of Deltagraphs)

Last year, he hit only a quarter of his batted balls in the air. Of that subset, he pulled only 13.7 percent of his flies and 2.8 percent of his liners, which would suggest that he hit only a few balls in the air to right field all season. Sure enough, Allen’s data includes only 14 air outs to right field in Nakashima’s six seasons, a sign of inefficient fielding. With two widely spaced outfielders and an extra glove in the infield, opposing teams would have been better positioned to snare some of his …

5. Sacrifices: 62

Discredited and endangered by the spread of sabermetrics, the sacrifice bunt has never been less common in the big leagues. Hamilton, the major league leader among position players last year, had only 11. Nakashima, it seems, has been trying to pick up the United States’ slack.

“Japanese baseball has always been a team sport,” says Whiting, who notes that NPB teams put a high “value on harmony, everybody contributing.” He estimates that from the high school level on up, Japanese players employ the sacrifice two to three times more often than their American counterparts. (Last year, the NPB:MLB sacrifice ratio was actually closer to four.) In Japan, Whiting says, “it’s encouraged and the players who are good at it do it more often.”

Nakashima does it really, really, really, ridiculously often. After dropping down 35 in 2014 and 34 in 2015, he got more sacrificial in 2016, leading both leagues by 24 sacrifices. According to Whiting, there’s no point at which sacrificing would be considered excessive; “the more the better,” he says.

Only one major leaguer has surpassed 62 sacrifices in a season: Ray Chapman had 67 in 1917, a few years before he was fatally beaned by a pitch, but he posted his total in 93 more trips to the plate. Even in sac-obsessed Japan, only two players have ever topped 62 in a season: Shinya Miyamoto (67 in 2001) and Masahiro Kawai (66 in 1991).

“Most guys in the two-hole have high sac rates just because they bunt every time someone is on base in front of them,” says Dave DeFreitas, a writer and former MLB scout for Pacific Rim players. “So the rate isn’t high because of the skill necessarily, more just because of the large number of opportunities.”

There has to be some skill at play, though, even if it’s an anachronism that most sabermetricians would sneer at. Nakashima batted second in only 50 of his 143 games, and no other player came close to his sacrifice total. And we know he’s no stranger to bat control, because of his …

6. Foul Balls: 759

Now we’ve arrived at Nakashima’s signature skill. Former major league reliever Chris Martin, who played for the Fighters last season, says that because the language barrier prevented him from getting to know Nakashima well, “[the] only thing I can really say about him is he likes to foul a lot of pitches off.” Bass says the same: “He prolongs baseball games because he fouls off more balls than anyone I’ve ever played with.”

There’s a book — actually, two books — called The Kid Who Batted 1.000, in which a teenaged nonathlete discovers that he has an ability to foul off any pitch in the strike zone. He does this over and over until the pitcher inevitably walks him; the 1.000 average comes from a single hit at the end of the season. That’s not Nakashima, who batted .243. But the pesky real-life shortstop is as close as it comes.

Nakashima starred in last year’s Japan Series, singling twice and walking three times in the climactic sixth game, which the Fighters won to take the title. But he set the tone for his series in his second plate appearance of Game 1 (after a first-inning sacrifice, of course), against former major leaguer and Hiroshima Carp pitcher Kris Johnson, who during the regular season walked only 2.4 batters per nine en route to a 2.15 ERA. Nakashima fought Johnson to a 12-pitch plate appearance, including eight fouls, before finally working a walk — one of only two Johnson allowed in 6 2/3 innings of one-run ball.

“The foul thing is a Japanese tradition and is the response to pitchers who can locate their secondary pitches like nobody’s business,” Allen says. “But nobody’s quite as good at it as Nakashima.” The table below, based on Deltagraphs data, shows that Nakashima hit 239 more fouls than any other NPB player last regular season, slapping almost all of the fouls to the opposite field.

In Japan, videos of Nakashima spoiling pitch after pitch form a whole highlight genre. “It’s definitely comical when he has 8–10 pitch at-bats every time,” Bass says. “It frustrates the opposing pitcher for sure.”

Opposing pitchers confirm the frustration. “He’s just an annoying hitter, that’s it!” Johnson tells me via email, irritation from facing Nakashima creeping into his punctuation. “A guy that looks to foul everything off [until] you walk him.”

Another former major leaguer, Chiba Lotte Marines starter Jason Standridge, faced Nakashima 21 times in 2016. Nakashima didn’t do too much damage at the plate, going 5-for-19 with a walk, a sac bunt, and four strikeouts. But he did leave a dent in Standridge’s psyche.

“I would never be a guy that wanted to bash another player,” the former first-round pick says, “but I hate facing the guy. All he wants to do is foul off pitches to get deeper in the count. He doesn’t look to hit, which bothers me. He just irritates me when he comes up to bat. He just fouls off pitch after pitch.” After further reflection, he adds, “Like I said, I’m not meaning to bash the guy’s game. But man he’s annoying.”

One might think that Nakashima would also annoy the Fighters fans who have to sit through all of those foul balls; if he ever did try to move to the majors, commissioner Rob Manfred might ban him from baseball to improve the pace of play. On the contrary, though: “Takuya is VERY popular,” a Fighters fan named Dani, one of the most prolific tweeters about the team, says via Twitter direct message. “I’d say one of the most popular players on the team.”

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In the majors, those frequent breaks between pitches might be boring, even for lovers of long plate appearances. In Japan, where fans congregate in cheering sections and conduct coordinated chants — and the “Taku-meter Lady” tallies Takuya’s fouls from the stands — the downtime isn’t as dull. “Guys with long at-bats can be a lot more fun for fans [in Japan] because we have so much more to do,” Deanna Rubin, another Fighters fan, says via DM. And with fans in the first few rows protected from fouls by netting that extends down the lines, only the paid participants turn into targets. “The camera crew now puts on helmets every at-bat, and our dugout pretty much all have their gloves out to protect themselves,” Dani says. “He is fun to watch.” The video below shows the dugout fire drill when Nakashima steps up, starting at 2:45.

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Nakashima is fan-friendly in one other way: The crowd considers him hot. Dani and Rubin report that Nakashima consistently cracks the top 10 in the attractiveness ratings at the back of Pro Yakyu Ai (loosely translated as Professional Baseball Love), a tabloid-type bimonthly magazine in the vein of Us Weekly or People that’s populated by NPB players. (It comes with collectible cards.) And the Fighters’ female fans have voted him the player they’d most like to date in back-to-back years of the team’s “Best Boyfriend Candidate Contest.”

Nakashima’s appeal off the field is almost strong enough for Standridge to forgive all the fouls. “Other than me not liking to face him, I think he’s a solid guy,” Standridge says.

7. Fouls/Swing With Two Strikes: 74.7 Percent

The stories say that Hall of Famer Luke Appling could foul off pitches for as long as he wanted to. Maybe he could, but we don’t have the data to prove it. What do we know is that modern major leaguers — even the few purported to possess the skill — show little inclination or ability to foul off pitches more successfully with two strikes. Here are the leaguewide rates from last season:

0 Strikes: 37.6 percent Fouls/Swing
1 Strike: 37.9 percent
2 Strikes: 38.8 percent

That difference between rates in two-strike and non-two-strike counts is negligible, about one extra foul for every 100 swings. Some said Ichiro was an exception who could bear down and spoil pitches with two strikes; if he was, it wasn’t by much. Jason Kendall said he was the same sort of exception; the stats said otherwise. Nakashima, sui generis in so many ways, is an actual exception here too.

Many players say they can flick pitches away at will. Nakashima is the rare hitter whose stats support the claim.

8. Pitches Per Plate Appearance: 4.54

You’re probably not surprised to see this one: Thanks to all those fouls, Nakashima led NPB in pitches per plate appearance last season (by .15 pitches per PA), with a rate exceeded only by Jayson Werth and Mike Napoli among qualified major league hitters. Nakashima’s 67 career plate appearances of 10 or more pitches outstrip all other active NPB players; 41-year-old Kazuya Fukuura ranks second, despite leading Nakashima by 14 seasons and more than 5,500 plate appearances. Last season, Nakashima twice topped out at 14 — not counting an 18-pitch, 13-foul performance in spring training that left everyone laughing when at long last he walked.

Relentless fouling enables Nakashima to draw walks at an above-average rate, even though his complete lack of power negates any fear of leaving pitches over the plate. Some pitchers may have simply surrendered and thrown him ball four just to make the fouls stop.

9. Four-Seamer Percentage: 57.6; Zone Rate: 48.1 Percent

The average Pacific League hitter last season saw pitches in the strike zone 41.8 percent of the time, and four-seam fastballs 46.5 percent of the time. Taken together, Nakashima’s far higher rates tell the story of a hitter who doesn’t scare a soul. Johnson’s prescription for pitchers facing Nakashima is to do what he didn’t at the end of their Japan Series showdown: “Throw strikes.” Standridge has reached the same solution. “I’ve started to just tell the catcher to set up down the middle and throw fastballs until he grounds out,” Standridge says. “To be honest, he’s an easy out if you make your pitch, but if you make a mistake he can slap it into the hole with the best of them.”

Teams tried to take that advice. The hitters who see the fewest pitches in the zone in Japan tend to be powerful foreign sluggers who can crush offerings over the plate: Dayan Viciedo, Wladimir Balentien, Garrett Jones, and Nakashima’s teammate Brandon Laird, who combined for 116 dingers, led the list last year. On the opposite end of the leaderboard? Nakashima, naturally, who saw the most strikes. Power hitters also tend to see fewer fastballs, which are often thrown for strikes; Nakashima faced the most fastballs, by a healthy 4-plus percentage points.

10. Runs Against Four-Seam Fastballs: Minus-20.7

One would surmise that since pitchers were so eager to throw Nakashima fastballs, he must not have done well when he saw them. One would be right. No NPB hitter had worse results against any pitch type than Nakashima did against four-seamers last season. Granted, that’s probably partly because he bunted so often; in 2014 and 2015, when his bunt totals were more modest, his performance against fastballs wasn’t so far below par. Cultural bunting norms notwithstanding, nearly 21 runs below average against a single pitch type is a disastrous sum; in the majors, it would have trailed only 2011 Álex González for the second-worst single-season mark of the PITCHf/x era.

“I think velocity in the States [would] be tough for Takuya,” Bass says. Velocity in Japan has been tough enough.

To sum up, we have a hitter who can’t hit fastballs or fly balls; who can’t or won’t pull pitches; and who gives up outs at every opportunity. Despite it all, we also have a beloved and valuable baseball player. By shortstop standards, Nakashima’s offense is adequate, and it wouldn’t be shocking to discover down the road that fatiguing and frustrating pitchers was worth a few extra runs that his slash lines couldn’t capture. This year, he’s aiming for 800 fouls.

Nakashima’s formula wouldn’t work everywhere. “He’s probably a [Munenori] Kawasaki–type guy if he ever were to make the jump to [the States],” DeFreitas says, referring to the Cubs’ karaoke artist/infield reserve. Slower infields, defensive shifts, and harder-throwing pitchers would probably spoil his production the way he spoils strikes.

We could bemoan all of those bunts, many of which must be sapping the Fighters’ win expectancy. We could dismiss Nakashima as not major league material. We could call his half-swinging tipping and tapping a gimmick, or question how well it will age. But we can’t call him comparable to anyone else.

Standridge, 38, has pitched almost 2,500 innings in 20 professional seasons, from the rookie leagues to the big leagues and from the Dominican to Japan. He’s never seen a player who hit like Nakashima. “He’s unique,” Standridge says. “I can’t remember anybody else that does or did that.”



peanut
Sep 9, 2007




HIROSHIMA TOYO CARP

!!

peanut
Sep 9, 2007




There are so many pictures of Slyly trolling other mascots it is hard to choose just one.

Only registered members can see post attachments!

ScottyJSno
Aug 16, 2010


Chunichi Dragons





2016 Record
58-82 (3 Ties) .414% and 30.5 games behind 1st.
6th place in the Central League.


Last Championship
Central League Pennant - 2011
Japan Series Championship - 2007
Drought - 10 years


Ballpark
Nagoya Dome (Nagoya)




Corporate Sponsor
Chunichi Shimbun Co., Ltd the 4th largest newspaper publisher in Japan


Uniforms



Projected Lineup

1 - CF *Yohei Oshima (31) .292/.348/.382

Oshima is the kind of player the NPB loves. He is fast, a decent base stealing threat, and a great defender. He has 20+ steals in the past 3 seasons, and has won the gold glove at CF 5 times including the past 3 years straight.



2 - 2B *Kyohei Kamezawa (28) .226/.271/.258 in 59 games

It seems likely that Kamezawa will split time, and slowly take over for the aging 38 year old veteran Araki (.246/.290/.291) at 2B. Though having unimpressive stats, he is known as a team leader and a mood setter for the team.



3 - 1B Dayan Viciedo (27) .274/.352/.486

In 2008 Viciedo was an international amateur FA signing out of Cuba for the Chicago White Socks. In 2010 he made the show and played mainly in the outfield for the Soxs. In 5 years of regular playing time he racked up a OPS+ of 97. In 2015 he was DFA and bounced around AAA affiliates before joining the Dragons in 2016. In his first 3 games with the team he hit 3 HRs. He is known as a free swinger who will chase.



4 - LF Alex Guerrero (30) .233/.261/.434 with the LA Dodgers in 2015

Guerrero is a Cuban defector who signed with the Dodgers in 2014. With limited success at the Big League level, and after injuring his knee in spring of 2016, the Dodgers DFA him. Guerrero slots in to the clean up spot and the Dragons are hopeful he will thrive there.



5 - RF Ryosuke Hirata (28) .248/.358/.411

1st round pick by the Dragons in 2006. He has become a regular starter in the OF since 2011. Said to have the best defense on the team in the OF by the manager. 2016 Silver Slugger award winner.



6 - 3B Nobumasa Fukuda (28) .267/.346/.407

In high school Fukuda was scouted by the NY Mets, but was drafted in 2007 in the 3rd round by the Dragons. He is a converted C to the IF.



7- SS Naomichi Donoue (28) .254/.298/.362

Player's Union Vice President, Donoue was a highly ranked 1st round prospect in 2006. Drafted by 3 different teams, he eventually joined the the team of his father and older brother. Completely unremarkable.



8 - C Shota Sugiyama (25) .260/.340/.357

A 4th round pick in 2012. Sugiyama got his first playing time in 2015 and became the full time C in 2016. He is fast for a C, and he is know for a strong pick-off move.



Projected Starting Pitching and Notable Relief Pitching

*Yudai Ono (28) 7-10 3.54 ERA / 1.257 WHIP / 5.9 K/9 / 2.30 K/BB / 3.63 FIP

Drafted out of College in 2011 Ono is not considered as having "ace" stuff. Ono has 88mph Fastball, fork-ball, 60mph curve, and 2 different sliders. Scouts have been concerned with his delivery, worrying that his arm could not take the strain. He is a two time all-star, but last year his ERA went up by a full run and his K/BB dropped by a whole K. The Dragons hope for a return to form.



Kazuki Yoshimi (32) 6-7 3.08 ERA / 1.226 WHIP / 5.6 K/9 / 3.00 K/BB / 3.40 FIP

A Dragon since 2006, Yoshimi's career has been plagued by elbow injures. Elbow and shoulder pain has kept him out for the majority of the 2013, 2014, and 2015. But when not hurt Yoishimi has won the best pitcher award in 2011 and had an excellent 2012. He throws a slider, a fork-ball, a cutter, a palm ball, a change-up, a curve, and a 88mph fastball. Always wears red underwear the day of a start.



Shunta Wakamatsu (21) 7-8 4.29 ERA / 1.442 WHIP / 6.6 K/9 / 2.30 K/BB / 3.55 FIP

A 7th round pick in 2012, Wakamatsu is the bright hope for the Dragons future. His first full year in 2015 with the pro-club had him wining 10 games with a 2.12 ERA and coming in second in Rookie of the year voting. His sophomore outing did not go as well, but there is hope for a return to form. He throws a 89mph fastball, a devastating change-up, a curve, a slider and a fork-ball.



*Jordan Norberto (30) 6-6 4.24 ERA / 1.364 WHIP / 8 K/9 / 2.00 K/BB / 3.97 FIP

Noberto First signed as a international amateur FA with the Arizona Diamondbacks in 2004. He was on the opening day rosters for the 2010 Diamondbacks and the 2011 Oakland As. Shoulder injuries limited him to only has 78.2 innings over 3 years in the show. In 2013 he was part of the Bio-Genesis scandal and was suspended for 50 games. He throws a 93mph fastball, a slider, and a change-up. He was a late resigning this off-season and I don't think he will be around next year unless his numbers really pick up.



Yuya Yanagi (23) First round pick in 2016 Draft out of University.

A highly touted prospect, Yanagi is expected to break camp with the Pro team. He has a "good quality" fastball and big dropping curve. His pitches are said to have lots of movement and changes speed well.



*Shinnosuke Ogasawara (19) 2-6 in 72 relief innings 3.36 ERA / 1.327 WHIP / 7.2 K/9 / 1.45 K/BB / 4.33 FIP

Ogasawara was a first round pick in 2015. In his first appearance at the age of 18 he threw 5 innings of one hit ball. He has a 94mph fastball and a "good" change up. He likes WWE. He is expect to make the starting rotation this year.



Outlook
The Chunichi Dragons look bad. Their line up is old and bad. Their bullpen is bad, they only have 2 pitchers with a WHIP below 1.200. And with no major signings in the postseason, the Dragons can only boast that 2 of their best players, Yohei Oshima(CF) and Ryosuke Hirata(RF), did not declare for domestic FA. Who they did pick up was a Alex Guerrero, and he seems to not be as exciting as fans would want. On the positive side, they have young pitching that seems ready to break out. The Dragons also have a new manager in Shigekazu Mori. He was the international scouting director for the Dragons before he became the new manager. He is known to have close ties with the Dominican Republic, and there is hopes that he will be able to bring in new talent from there.


Final Score

= 1

= 5

= 4

= 4


There is no where to go but up, but that won't happen.

ScottyJSno fucked around with this message at 06:00 on Feb 15, 2017

R.D. Mangles
Jan 10, 2004



Phil Coke holy poo poo

Mobius
Sep 26, 2000


Sweet, an NPB thread! I started following in 2014 and became something of a Tigers fan because they have so many parallels to the Cubs (also, shared players like Kosuke Fukudome, Matt Murton, and even Kyuji Fujikawa). Their last couple of seasons have been rough, though.

Following Shohei Otani has been fun in the meantime. Can't wait to see where he ends up in MLB, and whether he'll have the chance to be a two-way player here, too.

Also, I'm taking a trip to Japan soon and am in the process of trying to get opening day tickets for the Carp/Tigers game. Should be a hell of an experience if I can make it happen!

ScottyJSno
Aug 16, 2010


Hard hitting news out of training camps today. Otani received 24 Valentines day presents from fans. This is the most of any Pro NPB player. The next highest was paltry 18.

Also to update The Orix Buffaloes, Kaneko Chihiro has been named the opening day starter. This is unsurprising, he is the veteran pitcher on the team and is looking to have a bounce back year. Good pick.

ScottyJSno fucked around with this message at 23:14 on Feb 14, 2017

El Gallinero Gros
Mar 17, 2010



Mobius posted:

Sweet, an NPB thread! I started following in 2014 and became something of a Tigers fan because they have so many parallels to the Cubs (also, shared players like Kosuke Fukudome, Matt Murton, and even Kyuji Fujikawa). Their last couple of seasons have been rough, though.

Following Shohei Otani has been fun in the meantime. Can't wait to see where he ends up in MLB, and whether he'll have the chance to be a two-way player here, too.

Also, I'm taking a trip to Japan soon and am in the process of trying to get opening day tickets for the Carp/Tigers game. Should be a hell of an experience if I can make it happen!

If you make it happen do a write up, You Gotta Have Wa made attending games sound pretty wild for the more highly supported teams

Uznare
Jul 15, 2010

It's not animation, but the real stories!


Is anyone interested in write-ups on how to sign up for the few streaming services that actually offer access to NPB games? Or is that too niche.

El Gallinero Gros
Mar 17, 2010



Uznare posted:

Is anyone interested in write-ups on how to sign up for the few streaming services that actually offer access to NPB games? Or is that too niche.

I wouldn't mind some info on 'em. Are any available on Roku?

Inspector_666
Oct 7, 2003

benny with the good hair


R.D. Mangles posted:

Phil Coke holy poo poo

I can't tell if he means that Orix has to be my most or least favorite team.

(Up until now most favorite was the Ham Fighters because c'mon (yes I know the "ham" part isn't actually in the name.))

Uznare
Jul 15, 2010

It's not animation, but the real stories!


El Gallinero Gros posted:

I wouldn't mind some info on 'em. Are any available on Roku?

They're all browser based unfortunately. No apps or anything like that. Nothing you can't get around with an hdmi cable or a chromecast or something like that though.

peanut
Sep 9, 2007




quote:

Also, I'm taking a trip to Japan soon and am in the process of trying to get opening day tickets for the Carp/Tigers game. Should be a hell of an experience if I can make it happen!

Let me know if you need help. Hanshin tickets for fancy days can sell out fast if you don't have a club membership. Will it be at Koshien or in Hiroshima?

Mobius
Sep 26, 2000


El Gallinero Gros posted:

If you make it happen do a write up, You Gotta Have Wa made attending games sound pretty wild for the more highly supported teams

For sure! I expect it to be a great crowd no matter what, since not only is it opening day, but the Carp will be celebrating their first division championship in decades.

And You Gotta Have Wa was excellent, if anyone in this thread hasn't read it, they should. I also like the cheesy Tom Selleck movie, Mr. Baseball. The non-baseball parts are kinda corny, but the baseball-related stuff is spot on. I guess they got in trouble for so closely following everything You Gotta Have Wa talks about?

peanut posted:

Let me know if you need help. Hanshin tickets for fancy days can sell out fast if you don't have a club membership. Will it be at Koshien or in Hiroshima?

It's in Hiroshima, so I might have a decent chance at something in the visitor cheering section. I've been working with the guy at JapanBall.com. He's been super responsive and helpful, but is worried it'll be a tough get. So if you have some way to help, I'm all ears!

Unfortunately, there won't be any Tigers home games while I'm in Osaka. But, with any luck, I may be able to catch a Spring Koshien game!

peanut
Sep 9, 2007




My super technique would be to trust in my fellow goons and I'd go buy a ticket at a convenience store for you and mail it to you. There must be something available if you're not picky. PM me or find my email in my recent post history.

The Hiroshima (Mazda Zoom Zoom) stadium is huge and great and easy to get to. Hana Hostel is the closest cheap place to stay.

Phonoxen
Feb 15, 2017

As you can see, we've had our eye on you for some time now, Mr. Anderson.

I was wondering where Dayan Viciedo ended up, hope he smashes well

ScottyJSno
Aug 16, 2010


Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles





2016 Record
62-78 (3 Ties) .443% and 25 games behind 1st.
5th place in the Pacific League.


Last Championship
Pacific League Pennant - 2013
Japan Series Championship - 2013
Drought - 3 years


Ballpark
Rakuten Kobo Stadium Miyagi (Sendai)




Corporate sponsor
Rakuten, Inc. Rakuten is the largest e-commerce site in Japan and among the world's largest by sales. Think Amazon.com if Amazon.com had unreadable design.

(Personal Note: I hate this web site. The layout is the worst. Think Las Vegas neon signs of ads jammed into Amazon.com website. Ugh)


Uniforms



Projected lineup

1 - CF *Hiroaki Shimauchi (27) .287/.349/.404

Shimauchi is a 6th round pick out of university from 2011. In his early days he was mainly used as a pinch-runner and platoon bat. Last year he received is first major playing time in LF thanks to being short handed in OF after the signing of RF Carlos Peguero.



2 - SS *Eigoro Mogi (22) .278/.330/.408

A 2015 draftee out of university, Mogi perform admirably in in his rookie outing. He was the first rookie in team history to make the opening day lineup. With the 14th highest BA in NPB, Mogi came in 3rd in Rookie of the year voting.



3 - LF *Carlos Peguero (29) .279.340.492

Peguero signed with the Seattle Mariners as an international free agent out of the Dominican in 2005, and made his MLB debut in 2011. After making 103 game appearances in 5 year with 4 different clubs, the St. Louis Cardinals sold his contract to the Eagles in July of 2016. His AAA numbers over 6 seasons where .277/.346/.520. Peguero is seen as a power hitter with a changeup sized hole in his swing, he had a 33.5% strike out rate in 2016.



4 - 3B Zelous Wheeler (30) .265/.351/.478

The Milwaukee Brewers selected Wheeler in the 19th round of the 2007 Major League Baseball Draft. He was then claimed by the Baltimore Orioles, then signing as a free agent with the New York Yankees before the 2014 season. After starting the season in the minor leagues, Wheeler made his MLB debut on July 3, 2014. He only got 16 hits in 29 games. After the 2014 season, the Yankees sold Wheeler to the Eagles. Wheeler has seemed to find his niche hitting 27 HR for the Eagles last season. Wheeler is versatile player who has experience all round the infield and outfield.



5 - 1B *Ginji Akaminai (28) .274/.369/.333

Akaminai is a the 5 year veteran at 1B for the Eagles. While generally a very reliable contact hitter, he had a bit of a slump in 2016. After 3 straight season with a BA over .300, Akaminai's BA dropped 30 points. Because of this down swing his pay took hit in the yearly negotiations. This was even though his OBP and OPS was relatively unchanged. He even doubled the amount of walks from the year before.



6 - DH Japhet Amador (30) .258/.290/.515 (only played 1/2 the season, injury)

Amador is a giant of an man. "El Gigante de Mulege" is listed at 6'4" 297lb, he was registered as the heaviest NPB player ever. He was the 2015 Mexican League MVP with 41 HRs. In 2013 weighing in at 330lb and after murdering baseballs in Mexico for 5 years, and playing winter ball every year of his career, the Astros signed him. Sadly due to pregnant and sick wife he never got more then a handful of games in AAA. Thankfully, and hopefully, he will be hitting fat guy dong-shots for the Eagles this year.



7 - RF *Takero Okajima (27) .252/.338/.345

Okajima is 2011 4th round draftee. Reported to be fast and able to beat out many infield hits, especially for an converted catcher. He made the all star game last year.



8 - 2B *Kazuya Fujita (34) .265/.297/.321

Fujita is a long time veteran since 2005 in the NPB. He is the sort of boring Good D and bad everything else player that only Japanese Managers can love. He can only hit singles or bunt a guy over. Only had an OPS over .700 once in his 11 years. Silver Slugger in 2013, and 2014. Gold glove in 2013, 2014, and 2016.



9 - C Motohiro Shima (32) .271/.393/.357

The Eagles signed veteran C Toru Hosokawa (38) .116/.190/.168 this off-season, but he should be no threat to Shima's starting position. He is 2 time golden glove, and silver slugger winner in 2010 and 2013. He is also the long time battery mate of Yankees ace Tanaka. Shima is fast for a C and is one of the better sacrifice bunt-ers on the team, often time being called on to to bunt a suicide squeeze.



Projected Starting Pitching and Notable Relief Pitching

Takahiro Norimoto (26) 11-11 2.91 ERA / 1.241 WHIP / 10.0 K/9 / 4.32 K/BB / 2.38 FIP

Norimoto was the 2013 Rookie of the year. He was drafted in the second round of the 2012 draft. Norimoto is one of the stand out pitchers in the NPB. After is ROTY season, he improved in every regard, he led the league in K and inning pitched in 2014 and 2015. Norimoto Throws a 90mph fastball and is know for his devastating slider which can have different break profiles.



Takayuki Kishi (32) 9-7 2.49 ERA / 1.220 WHIP / 7.2 K/9 / 2.89 K/BB / 2.98 FIP with the Seibu Lions

A major FA signing, Kishi played last year with the Seibu Lions. He is a Local boy having played through university in Miyagi-Ken. Kishi throws a 89mph fastball, a change-up, a slider, and a 70mph curve-ball. Kishi is know to be very athletic, and is a two time all-star and a 1 time Pitcher of the Year award winner.



Manabu Mima (30) 9-8 4.27 ERA / 1.361 WHIP / 6.7 K/9 / 3.44 K/BB / 3.47 FIP

Mima is 2010 2nd round draft pick out the industrial leagues. he is best know for losing 13 consecutive starts at home in 2015. He is a thoroughly avg starter. He throws a slider, a fork-ball, a curve-ball, a two-seamer, and a 95mph fastball.



*Takahiro Shiomi (28) 8-9 3.97 ERA / 1.245 WHIP / 6.6 K/9 / 3.00 K/BB / 3.53 FIP

First round pick in 2010. While Shiomi is known for his control, his down fall has been the long ball giving up enough solo HRs to be called "1 run sick". He throws a 86mph fastball, a curve at 60mph, a change-up, a slider, and a fork-ball. He was an all-star in his rookie season.



Yoshinao Kamata (23) 7-5 4.14 ERA / 1.540 WHIP / 6.1 K/9 / 1.54 K/BB / 4.49 FIP

Kamata was a 2nd round pick in 2012. He had Tommy Johns at age 20. He throws a 88mph fastball, a slider, a cut-ball, and a fork-ball. It might be time to send him back down to a lower level to see if he can improve. I don't like anything about him but the Eagles are not deep at SP. At least he is young.



*Tomohiro Anraku (20) 3-5 3.42 ERA / 1.198 WHIP / 6.8 K/9 / 2.3 K/BB / 3.73 FIP

1st Round pick out of High School in 2014. Anraku holds the record for the fastest pitch by a high schooler in Japan, 98mph. He averages 91mph fastball, a slider, a fork ball, and a 60mph curve. He is best know in the west for Baseball America article about Japanese High School pitch counts. In that 2013 article they reported he threw 772 pitches over five games in nine days, including 232 in one game.



Outlook
While missing out on South Korean Slugger Dae-ho Lee and Nippon Ham Fighters' FA Dai-Kang Yang, the Eagles did manage to land home town hero Takayuki Kishi. The rotion is solid, the starting 9 are also solid. Their biggest weakness is the bullpen, with no one elite arm to clean up messes. In 2015 they had a few 10 game undefeated streaks but fell apart in the second half. I am looking forward to see how Mexican big man Japhet Amador can do with a full season. On the pitching side Norimoto is about as elite as NPB can produce. They might be able to fight their way into the Climax-Series.


Final Score

= 4

= 5

= 2

= 4

Mr. Fix It
Oct 26, 2000

ayyy




ScottyJSno posted:


Rakuten, Inc. Rakuten is the largest e-commerce site in Japan and among the world's largest by sales. Think Amazon.com if Amazon.com had unreadable design.

(Personal Note: I hate this web site. The layout is the worst. Think Las Vegas neon signs of ads jammed into Amazon.com website. Ugh)

gently caress Rakuten

El Gallinero Gros
Mar 17, 2010



I'm enjoying these. Keep it up!

Who would you say is the best player of the last decade to not head to MLB? Is it Ohtani?

SUPER HASSLER
Jan 31, 2005



As a Yakult fan since the late 90s, thanks to my host family, I'll try to participate!

Alzabo
Oct 23, 2002

You watched it, you can't unwatch it.


My beloved White on Black Tigers 59fifty cap is on it's last legs. Anyone know of a good online shop that ships to the US?

Humbug Scoolbus
Apr 25, 2008

The scarlet letter was her passport into regions where other women dared not tread. Shame, Despair, Solitude! These had been her teachers, stern and wild ones, and they had made her strong, but taught her much amiss.


Clapping Larry

https://www.japan-zone.com/store/of...caps-c-1_2.html

Stupidly expensive though.

ScottyJSno
Aug 16, 2010



I don't think majestic makes NPB caps... My guess they are Chinese Ripoffs too

EDIT majestic did do 2016 hats. 3,000 YEN on Japanese Web sites

ScottyJSno fucked around with this message at 01:36 on Feb 20, 2017

Inspector_666
Oct 7, 2003

benny with the good hair


If you want to get funky with it: https://www.ebbets.com/category/Japan-Ballcaps

peanut
Sep 9, 2007




I'm willing to order merch online from Japanese sites and fwd to goons outside of Japan. The prices can still be ridiculous.

Inspector_666
Oct 7, 2003

benny with the good hair


peanut posted:

I'm willing to order merch online from Japanese sites and fwd to goons outside of Japan. The prices can still be ridiculous.

How much do Giants caps run?

peanut
Sep 9, 2007




https://www.giants-goods.com/produc...roduct_id=24625

Lol anywhere from $15 to $150. Their online store is terrible and keyword search brings up every item.

peanut fucked around with this message at 05:44 on Feb 21, 2017

Alzabo
Oct 23, 2002

You watched it, you can't unwatch it.


Wow, thanks for all the helpful suggestions. I haven't found any Wool 59fifty caps, maybe they've been discontinued?

peanut: thanks for the offer. I'll PM you if I find something online that can't be shipped directly to the US.

thorsilver
Feb 20, 2005

You have never
been at my show
You haven't seen before
how looks the trumpet



Uznare posted:

They're all browser based unfortunately. No apps or anything like that. Nothing you can't get around with an hdmi cable or a chromecast or something like that though.

I'd be pretty interested in this, I lived in Japan for awhile and miss NPB and the distinctive atmosphere. Would love a chance to catch some streams this year.

Mobius
Sep 26, 2000


Ticket confirmed, I will be at the Carp/Tigers opening night game! I can't wait! I'll be sure to take plenty of pictures and share. And with any luck in the scheduling, I may have to make a side trip for Spring Koshien when I'm in Osaka, too...

peanut
Sep 9, 2007




Congrats, dude! My husband tried to get Carp home tickets for June but everything was sold out 5 minutes after sales started. His friend was second in line at another convenience store and said the first guy in line bought $6000 of tickets (to be sold by online auction.) loving scalpers. We live too far away to risk same-day unreserved seating.

Mobius
Sep 26, 2000


peanut posted:

Congrats, dude! My husband tried to get Carp home tickets for June but everything was sold out 5 minutes after sales started. His friend was second in line at another convenience store and said the first guy in line bought $6000 of tickets (to be sold by online auction.) loving scalpers. We live too far away to risk same-day unreserved seating.

That's insane. In that case, I have no idea how my guy managed to get them. But hey, major kudos to Michael at JapanBallTickets.com!

psyer
Mar 26, 2013


Spring Koshien has started in Japan. It is a high school baseball tournament.

http://mainichi.jp/koshien/senbatsu/live/

cave emperor
Sep 1, 2016



Man the Ham Fighters are terrible this year, just four wins out of nineteen matches so far.

I'm glad the Carps are still doing good though.

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peanut
Sep 9, 2007




The internet is loving this photo of Eldred riding home on a bike w baby seats after the game was cancelled for rain.

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