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Giants’ Abe handed massive raise

Kyodo

Catcher Shinnosuke Abe reaped a huge windfall on Wednesday when the Yomiuri Giants handed the Japan captain a ¥170 million raise for next season. The salary is the third highest ever for a Japanese player in Nippon Professional Baseball.

The 33-year-old Abe, the Central League MVP last season, led the league in batting average, on-base percentage, slugging percentage and RBIs. His 27 home runs were second in the CL.

“I received a good evaluation. I feel that even more responsibility has been placed upon me,” Abe said with a smile.

The only Japanese players to receive larger salaries were reliever Kazuhiro Sasaki, who was paid ¥650 million in 2004 and 2005 after he returned from the majors, and Hideki Matsui, who was paid ¥610 million in 2002, his last season before moving to the major leagues.