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Miyauchi named acting commish

Kyodo

Orix Buffaloes owner Yoshihiko Miyauchi will serve as acting commissioner of Nippon Professional Baseball until the end of the year after the search for Ryozo Kato’s successor hit a snag.

The decision was taken at an extraordinary owners’ meeting Monday, which Miyauchi chaired. Kato announced his resignation last month to take the fall for the uproar over the secretly modified baseball.

Because an owner cannot double as commissioner, Miyauchi’s post with the Buffaloes will temporarily be filled by former Orix vice president Shunsuke Takeda.

Japanese baseball is still trying to put closure on the altered-ball scandal, which broke in June. A third-party investigating body held Kato ultimately responsible earlier this month, but the findings have yet to be released.

Kato’s special adviser and Fukuoka Softbank Hawks chairman Sadaharu Oh has already ruled himself out of the commissioner’s job.