NISHINOMIYA, Hyogo Pref. (Kyodo) The Hanshin Tigers agreed Tuesday to pay Central League MVP Tomoaki Kanemoto an unchanged estimated 260 million yen in annual salary, plus performance-based incentives, for 2006.

For the final year of his four-year contract, Kanemoto got the incentive part he failed to get last offseason, as the 37-year-old slugger had career highs of a .327 average, 40 homers and 125 RBIs in 146 games this past season and led Hanshin to its second league pennant in three years.

“Last year, I didn’t have that incentive part since the team finished fourth in the league,” Kanemoto said.

Meanwhile, Hanshin outfielder Shinjiro Hiyama took a 15 million yen pay cut and re-signed a one-year deal worth an estimated 105 million yen.

Hiyama hit .278 with eight homers and 40 RBIs in the last of his three-year contract.

Surgery for Takahashi

Yomiuri Giants outfielder Yoshinobu Takahashi is scheduled to undergo surgery to remove bone spurs from his right ankle, team officials said Tuesday.

According to a team official, he will need several months to rehabilitate, meaning he could possibly miss Opening Day next season on March 31.

Takahashi injured his ankle while chasing down a ball in a game against the Hiroshima Carp on July 8 when he collided with a fence in the outfield. He returned to the lineup in late August but bone spurs were later discovered in his ankle.

The 30-year-old played in just 88 games this past season with 17 homers.

Southpaw gets raise

Yomiuri Giants left-hander Hisanori Takahashi re-signed with the Central League club Tuesday for an estimated 73 million yen in annual salary.

Takahashi got an 8 million yen pay raise after staying in the starting rotation throughout the 2005 season. He was 8-12 with a 4.47 ERA in 27 mound appearances.

Elsewhere, Seibu Lions right-hander Takashi Ishii took a 5 million yen pay cut and re-signed on a one-year deal for an estimated 50 million yen.

The 2004 Japan Series MVP was 2-4 with an 8.04 ERA in just seven games this year.

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