• Kyodo News


Seibu Lions left-hander Kazuhisa Ishii re-signed for ¥280 million, plus performance-based incentives, Tuesday to become the highest paid pitcher in the Pacific League thus far in the current offseason.

“I am glad we won the Japan Series. Personally, my performance dropped off in the second half of the season, so next year I would like to perform well throughout,” said the 35-year-old Ishii, who wrapped up talks on the second year of a two-year deal.

Ishii signed as a free agent in 2007 went 11-10 in 25 games this past season en route to helping the Lions win the Japan Series.

In another major transaction, Yomiuri Giants catcher Shinnosuke Abe re-signed for a salary of ¥270 million, a ¥30 million pay raise from 2008.

Abe, 29, saw a drop in performance from 2007 after batting .271 with 67 RBIs and 24 homers in 125 games but helped Yomiuri win its second consecutive league championship while also being named to the Central League “Best Nine.”

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