• Kyodo


Kintetsu Corp. President Masanori Yamaguchi categorically denied again Monday that the major railroad operator will sell its Kintetsu Buffaloes professional baseball club to Internet service firm Livedoor Co.

“There isn’t even a one percent” possibility of selling the team to Livedoor, Yamaguchi said at a press conference.

Negotiations with Orix Corp. to merge the Buffaloes with the Orix BlueWave have progressed with Japanese baseball commissioner Yasuchika Negoro’s consent, Yamaguchi added.

While players of the Buffaloes favor the proposed purchase of the team by Livedoor, Yamaguchi said, “I wouldn’t accept such an idea.”

With regard to Livedoor’s proposal, Yamaguchi said he cannot comment because the company has not clarified what it would do with the baseball team.

Yamaguchi also said he does not need to meet Livedoor President Takafumi Horie to discuss the issue.

Kataoka returns

NISHINOMIYA, Hyogo Pref. (Kyodo) Hanshin Tigers infielder Atsushi Kataoka, who has been out of action with an injured right calf, rejoined the top team on Monday , team officials said.

Kataoka is scheduled to return to the active roster for Tuesday’s game against the Hiroshima Carp at Muscat stadium in Kurashiki, Okayama Prefecture.

Kataoka was diagnosed with a damaged calf requiring three weeks of recovery after he sustained the injury playing in a minor league game on May 25.

Just one month earlier, he came off the roster due to an injury to his right side. Kataoka has played in just 12 games with one homer this season for the defending Central League champions.

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