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    Posts Tagged ‘kobe’

    Eri Yoshida’s debut with video

    Posted by japanstats on 2009 March 28日 Saturday

    Eri Yoshida made her regular season game debut for her Kansai Indenpendent League team Kobe 9 Cruise in their season opener at the Osaka Kyocera Dome on Thursday 27 March 2009.

    She came into the game in the 9th with her team leading the Osaka Villicanes by 5-0. She walked her first batter on 4 straight knuckleballers, then mixed her fastball and knuckleball to strike the next batter out on 5 pitches.

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    Posted in 02_English, baseball, information | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

    Sidearm knuckler Eri Yoshida likely to pitch on 24 Mar

    Posted by japanstats on 2009 March 13日 Friday

    17 year old high school student, sidearm knuckleballer, and the first female Japanese professional baseball player Eri Yoshida is likely to see her first game action in the pre-season game for her Kobe 9Cruise on the road against the Kishu Rangers at the Kimiidera Stadium in Wakayama scheduled on March 24. Manager of Kobe, Yoshihiro Nakata, had mentioned that he wanted to test Eri in a game in the latter half of March, and this recently scheduled match against Kishu fits the bill.

    He’s also declared that Eri will pitch in the season opener on the 27th, this seems kinda gimmicky but it’s the independent Kansai League’s first year, so whatever gets the press eh. The season opener will be against the Osaka Villicanes at the sure to be cavernous for indie ball Kyocera Dome (!) at 18:15.

    yuni

    Posted in 02_English, baseball, information, opinion | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

    Submarine knuckleballer… and it’s a she!

    Posted by japanstats on 2008 November 17日 Monday

    This story is full of goodies for the obscure baseball lover.

    The newly formed Kansai Independent League, which will begin play in 2009, has just held its draft. This is the 3rd independent league in Japan to start operation this decade, after the pioneering Shikoku-Kyushu Island League and the Baseball Challenge League (Hoku-Shinetsu region).

    yoshida_press 

    yoshida_test

    The Kansai league features the first female owner of a pro ball club in Japan as the Kobe 9Cruise (yes, that’s the team name) is owned by Kazuyo Hirota who runs a local mineral water company. The league held an open combined tryout on 4 November, and the draft on 16 November where Kobe selected Eri Yoshida, a 16 year old high school girl who is a submarine knuckleball pitcher (got all that?), with one of its picks after they saw what they liked in the tryout. Yoshida passed the first and second tests of the tryout, then pitched an inning where she struck out the first batter on a knuckler, walked the second batter, then got the next two batters to ground out to second and pop out to short.

    She received a compliment from a former Yomiuri player and new Osaka pitching coach that her knuckler and fastball both have the same delivery. Her fastball is in the high 60s, so I assume she relies almost entirely on the knuckler. It’s reported that she’s considering transferring to a Kobe high school, and indie games tend to be played on weekends, so I guess this could somehow all work out, it’ll an interesting story to follow as Yoshida becomes the first professional female baseball player in Japan (in a men’s league, there was a women’s league for 2 brief years following the war).

    Posted in 02_English, baseball, high school, information, opinion | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments »

    Rare Kuwata and Kiyohara Photos

    Posted by japanstats on 2008 July 29日 Tuesday

    Living legend and recently retired Masumi Kuwata (173-141, 3.55 ERA in NPB) threw 38 batting practice pitches today to almost-retired-but-still-rehabbing slugger Kazuhiro Kiyohara (.272/.389/.521, 525 HR, 1527 RBI) at Kobe’s Skymark Stadium. The interesting twist? Kuwata was in his Pittsburgh Pirates uniform which he wore briefly in 2007-08 while Kiyohara wore his Orix Buffaloes uniform. The two formed the core of the mighty PL Gakuen high school baseball team in the mid-80s (made it into all 5 possible Koshien tournaments, Spring and Summer, during their 3 years from the extremely competitive Osaka prefecture, won their way to 4 finals and won the whole thing twice), and were reunited on the Yomiuri Giants from 1997-2005. The image of Kiyohara tears before the final pitch of the 1987 Japan Series as his  Seibu Lions clinched the series over the Kuwata’s Yomiuri Giants is legendary. Will Kiyohara make a full come back and add to his magnificient career homerun total (5th all time and 11 behind 4th place Carp Koji Yamamoto), we can never predict with his now shattered body.

    Posted in 02_English, baseball, high school, information, MLB, NPB, opinion | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

    The Ikea Train

    Posted by japanstats on 2008 April 11日 Friday

    Ikea is opening up a new store in Kobe on the 14th, and their marketing team took the idea of train advertisement several steps further by completely redecorating the exterior and interior of each car, and each car having completely different themes. Rather like the showroom style Ikea stores themselves. But since when has Ikea started using crazy patterns? It’s probably just the clashing patterns that make this seem whack, and they’re probably even decent on their own or when combined with solid colours.

    The exterior

     

    And various interior shots:

    Price tag, nice touch.

    Posted in 02_English, culture, information, opinion | Tagged: , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »