Call-up lights fire under Fujinami

Nov 23, 2016

Call-up lights fire under Fujinami

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Shintaro Fujinami’s recent Samurai Japan call-up may have been taken him by surprise, but he said the opportunity won’t be taken for granted. Although Fujinami had been a regular member of manager Hiroki Kokubo’s pitching staff, the right-hander was coming off his worst season ...

Nov 13, 2016

Samurai Japan likely to sweep Nakata from cleanup spot

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After four games against Mexico and the Netherlands, Samurai Japan manager Hiroki Kokubo’s experiment with Sho Nakata as a cleanup hitter appears to be over. Nakata thrived in the No. 6 hole in last year’s Premier 12, when Takeya Nakamura batted fourth, but has ...

Ono lifts Japan with sayonara single in 10th

Nov 13, 2016

Ono lifts Japan with sayonara single in 10th

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The game was supposed to only be a dress rehearsal for next year’s World Baseball Classic. But the atmosphere during the ninth inning at Tokyo Dome made it feel a whole lot like the real thing. A game of late, wild momentum shifts finally ...