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KAMAGAYA, Chiba Pref. (Kyodo) Highly touted Hokkaido Nippon Ham Fighters right-hander Yuki Saito is well on his way to getting his pitching form up to scratch before spring training next month.

The former Waseda University ace took part in a joint rookie workout, which included fielding grounders and playing catch, for about two hours at Kamagaya Stadium on Wednesday.

“I plan to start throwing hard once I get to spring training,” said Saito.

Pitching coach Masato Yoshii, who was at the facility in Chiba Prefecture to attend a staff meeting, said the team is getting Saito prepared to play on the top team, hopefully from day one.

“We are working on a high percentage way that he can start to contribute. We want to get him pitching in some actual games soon. It’s better to get his feeling on the mound back, so he can continue to make progress.”

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