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The exhibition season is well under way in Japanese baseball, with most teams already five or more games into spring training games.

The defending Japan Series champion Fukuoka Softbank Hawks (6-1) are currently atop the spring standings, while the Hokkaido Nippon Ham Fighters (0-4-2) are bringing up the rear. That does not, however, mean Hawks fans should be overly enthused about the upcoming season, nor does it suggest Fighters supporters should brace for the worse.

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