• Kyodo

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Kohei Arihara, last year’s Pacific League rookie of the year, will be deactivated due to a back sprain, the Hokkaido Nippon Ham Fighters announced Wednesday.

Arihara, who is 2-0 after two strong starts this season, will be deactivated on Thursday but is expected to return to the active roster 10 days later. Arihara was the winning pitcher on Sunday against the Fukuoka SoftBank Hawks, and was examined on Wednesday at a Tokyo hospital.

“It doesn’t appear to be that bad, so he’ll get back to us quickly,” Fighters manager Hideki Kuriyama said at Saitama Prefecture’s Seibu Prince Dome prior to the Fighters’ game against the Seibu Lions.

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