Tag Archives: Hanshin Tigers

Silent knights

From fans’ non-stop chanting to shouts that accompany every practice swing in every sport in every school across the nation, noise is such a prominent feature of sports in Japan, that one almost expects competitors in Shogi (Japanese chess) matches to shout every time they slap a piece onto the wooden board.

But on Monday, Hanshin Tigers manager Akihiro Yano and his coaches asked players to focus on the task of catching and throwing the ball without the seemingly obligatory shouts that ring reverberate through Japanese practices, the Nikkan Sports reported.

“It’s become second nature for players to shout, but even when doing that they seem to move lazily. We wanted to see how they looked without the shouting,” said Kazuki Inoue, whose job as head coach is primarily to keep players from being lazy and to ride them when they make mistakes–something that might not be a natural fit for the easy-going former Dragons outfielder.

Manager Yano said, “I thought the outfielders were more conscious of their throws, rather than shouting ‘Oi’ when they released the ball. I want them focused on executing and thinking, ‘That’s where I’m going to put the ball.'”

And when the ban on shouting was lifted, the story said, the players cheered loudly as if a weight had been lifted from their shoulders.

Bour, Tigers may be done

Justin Bour is done with the Hanshin Tigers, the Daily Sports reported Friday morning, a day after he was dropped from the active roster following pregame practice. The Nikkan Sports later spoke to manager Akihiro Yano, who said Bour’s deactivation was due to the import-player roster limit.

The front office met with the owner on Wednesday. Bour was scheduled to work out with the farm team from Saturday with no plans to reactivate him. Some players come to Japan with a no-cut clause, allowing them to refuse an assignment to the farm.

The team has busily been informing older players that they won’t be back for 2021, starting with 43-year-old outfielder Kosuke Fukudome and 41-year-old former ace Atsushi Nomi.

In 99 games, Bour is slugging .422 with a .338 on-base percentage.

Last year, the Tigers signed Yangervis Solarte in the summer, promoted him to the first team after a couple of days with the minor league club. He brought an instant dynamic presence to the team but had difficulty adjusting and things blew up. When Solarte was deactivated, he quit the team rather than report to the minors.