Tag Archives: Kazuhisa Ishii

NPB 2020 Nov. 13

Friday’s games


  • No games


  • No games

Other news

Eagles president: Don’t lose 1-run games

Rakuten Eagles team president Yozo Tachibana said losing one-run games was an impediment to success on Friday, when he met the press along with general manager Kazuhisa Ishii, who has been assigned to replace Hajime Miki as the club’s skipper.

“He (Ishii) has a cheerful disposition, but he’s also strict. So I want the team to enjoy winning but be tough. We lost a lot of one-run games this year, and to prevent that from happening we need to be strict,” Tachibana said.

Over and over the pair repeated variations on the theme of addressing weakness to overcome obstacles. In addition to being poor at one-run games, Ishii said the club had many strong points but was not good in do-or-die situations.

Through 49 games, the Eagles were 27-19-1 but went 28-38-7 from there to finish 2-1/2 games out of the last playoff spot.

“On Nov. 12 the team’s top executives met and decided to ask Ishii to manage,” Tachibana said. “He’s been watching the team all along and he knows the players. He’s been shaping the team but not while in uniform but now we want him in uniform so that fans can see the kind of baseball that springs from his thinking.”

Ishii has never looked overly comfortable in front of an audience although in informal settings he smiles easily. You could see that in the presser as he looked tense through much of it, particularly when Tachibana was speaking, but did warm up to the setting as time went by.

Manager Junichi Fukura took over as Orix GM, while Rakuten GM Kazuhisa Ishii will manage, too.

Active roster moves 11/12/2020 — none

Starting pitchers for Nov. 13, 2020

Pacific League Climax Series

Hawks vs Marines: PayPay Dome 1 pm, 12 midnight EDT

Kodai Senga (11-6, 2.16) vs Manabu Mima (10-4, 3.95)

Central League

BayStars vs Giants: Yokohama Stadium 2 pm, 1 am EDT

Kentaro Taira (4-6, 2.30) vs Tomoyuki Sugano (14-2, 2.04)

NPB 2020 Nov. 12

Thursday’s games


  • No games


  • No games

Other news

Rakuten GM Ishii to replace Miki as manager

Rakuten Eagles General Manager Kazuhisa Ishii will add field manager to his portfolio, replacing first-year skipper Hajime Miki at the Pacific League club the team announced Thursday.

Ishii will be the third Japanese former big leaguer to manage after the Lotte Marines’ Tadahito Iguchi and the Yakult Swallows’ Shingo Takatsu.

Miki has a multiyear contract and will return to manage the farm team, where he was skipper in 2019. Ishii, who played for the Yakult Swallows, Dodgers, New York Mets and Seibu Lions.

The last manager to essentially serve as general manager, although without that title, was Bobby Valentine, who assumed that role in 2005 and held it until 2008, when he was ousted from the GM role in a coup.

Orix to stick with acting manager Nakajima

The Orix Buffaloes announced Thursday they will promote farm team manager Satoshi Nakajima, and change his status from acting manager to manager for 2021.

Nakajima is the fifth acting manager since Orix purchased the franchise from the Hankyu Railroad after the 1988 season, and all four of its Japanese interim skippers have stayed on for the following season. The one American, long-time Japan veteran Leon Lee, is the only one not to be invited back.

Active roster moves 11/12/2020 — none

Starting pitchers for Nov. 13, 2020

No games scheduled

The kotatsu league: Eagles land Chargois

The Rakuten Eagles of Japan’s Pacific League announced Thursday they have completed the signing of former Minnesota Twins and Los Angeles Dodgers reliever J.T. Chargois.

The right-hander, who just turned 29, has relied primarily on his fastball and slider, has been striking out well over one batter per inning in his 60 games out of the Dodgers’ bullpen the past two seasons.

In a Japanese language statement released by the Eagles, Chargois expressed appreciation to Rakuten for giving him this opportunity to take the next step in his career.

“We have signed Chargois in the belief that he will be able to help our chances of winning by pitching in the late innings in relief,” said the Eagles general manager, former Dodger pitcher Kazuhisa Ishii.

“Regarding our reasons for acquiring him, we believe his fastball is strong enough to dominate over the course of an inning. He also has late movement on his breaking ball. He is a fighter who can learn the most important lessons Japan can teach and with that knowledge return to the major leagues. We want him to be a success here.”

The Sendai-based Eagles, who began operating as an expansion franchise in 2005 out of the ashes of the merger of the PL’s Orix Buffaloes and Kintetsu Buffaloes, finished third in the PL last season, but have never finished better than fourth in any even-numbered year.

The Eagles are looking to end that frustrating pattern in 2020 by moving left-handed closer Yuki Matsui to the starting rotation.

Rakuten acquires reliever Chargois

The Rakuten Eagles of Japan’s Pacific League have acquired Los Angeles Dodgers reliever JT Chargois a day after he was released by the National League club, according to a report by Sports Nippon on Monday, citing sources.

The Eagles, who won their only PL and Japan Series pennant in 2013, are expected to move lefty closer Yuki Matsui into the starting rotation next year. Chargois, who turned 29 in December and made his big league debut for the Twins in 2016, has struck out 85 batters in 76-2/3 innings.

The Eagles, who hired former Dodger Kazuhisa Ishii as their general manager a year ago, finished third last year in the league, reaching the postseason for the first time since 2017. The club got a big boost from new import Jabari Blash, who posted a .936 OPS in a career-high 527 plate appearances for the Sendai-based Eagles.

NPB games, news of Oct. 10, 2019

Forgive the Hanshin Tigers if thinking that the typhoon bearing down on Tokyo has struck early. Before the game the Giants announced Game 4 of the CL Climax Series is necessary, it will be moved from Saturday afternoon to Sunday because of the expected disruptions from Typhoon Hagibis. In the meantime, the Tigers are playing like they’ve got a train to catch back to Osaka on Saturday.

The SoftBank Hawks, on the other hand, will be in town at least until Sunday now that the Pacific League’s CS Game 4 has also been moved from Saturday.

Giants 6, Tigers 0

At Tokyo Dome, Cristopher Mercedes struck out six over seven scoreless innings against Hanshin and two relievers completed the three-hitter as Yomiuri moved within one win of its first Japan Series berth in six years.

Because the six-game Climax Series final stages give the league champ a one-win advantage, and victory if the series should end up in a tie, the Giants can clinch on Friday with a win or a 12-inning tie.

“Since the end of the regular season, I’ve been working diligently to be ready,” Mercedes said. “Now I want to go back to training like that for my next outing.”

“We’re all working together to get to the Japan Series and win the Japan championship.”

Yoshiyuki Kamei’s hustling leadoff double and a Hayato Sakamoto single allowed the Giants to score in the first on a double play against Tigers starter Haruto Takahashi.

Alex Guerrero made it 3-0 in the fourth, when he pounced on a 3-2 breaking ball from Cuban compatriot Onelki Garcia. His measured sweet swing with a man on lofted the low pitch into the stands in left. When he got back to the bench, he was received a raucous greeting from retiring former captain Shinnosuke Abe.

“He’s got so much experience,” Guerrero said of the future Hall of Famer. “He’s always full of good advice that he shares with me. He is a big part of this team.”

The 37-year-old Kamei doubled with one out to spark a two-run fifth, stole third on the front end of a double steal with Sakamoto and scored on Yoshihiro Maru’s sac fly.

If the Giants do win Game 3, it will mark the third straight sweep in a final stage at Tokyo Dome. The Giants swept the Hiroshima Carp in 2013 and were swept by the Tigers in 2014. The Giants also won the last three games of the 2012 series after dropping the first three against the Chunichi Dragons.

Hawks 8, Lions 6

At MetLife Dome, Seibu showed what its made of, giving up six early runs before storming back into the game in losing Game 2 of their final stage against SoftBank.

On a night when Tatsuya Imai missed with a lot of pitches, Akira Nakamura made him pay for a couple of mistakes with a first-inning RBI single and a two-run, third-inning home run.

For the second straight day, Seibu was victimized by a lucky hit that turned into a first-inning run, but other than that, Imai was just mediocre and the Hawks punished him for it. After a sacrifice and a groundout Taisei Makihara, who reached on a weakly hit blooper, scored on Nakamura’s hard-hit single.

Hawks starter Shota Takeda retired 11 of the first 13 batters he faced before Shuta Tonosaki’s solo homer made it a 7-1 game in the fourth inning. Takeda gave up three runs on three hits in the third, but the bullpen proved capable of holding Seibu to two runs over the final 4-1/3 innings.


Eagles promote farm manager Miki to run PL squad

The Rakuten Eagles have decided to make farm manager Hajime Miki their first-team skipper Sports Nippon Annex reported Thursday.

Yosuke Hiraishi, who began running the Eagles as interim skipper on June 17, 2018, and was appointed manager after the season. The youngest skipper in either league when he started at the age of 38, Hiraishi was also one of the least experienced as a player, his 37 career hits on the first team surpassed the previous low in the two-league era — 56 by the late Hall of Fame skipper Toshiharu Ueda.

When reports that the Eagles had not discussed a contract extension with Hiraishi, first-year GM Kazuhisa Ishii did a fair Donald Trump impression, steaming at reporters and blaming them for their reckless reports. In essence, Ishii said, “You can’t write we haven’t spoken about his job, because we haven’t spoken yet.”

Miki, who was brought in this year to run the Eagles’ Eastern League farm team, is a former teammate of Ishii’s with the Yakult Swallows.

Hiraishi confirmed that he had not been offered a job to manage next season but that Rakuten had offered him a different position.