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Patrick Newman

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Red Sox Notes: Matsuzaka, Saito & Tazawa

by Patrick Newman (Feb 16, 2009)

The Red Sox have four Japanese pitchers on their 40-man roster, and as such are getting their share of coverage in the Japanese media. 

  • Daisuke Matsuzaka has been training in advance of the WBC with his former team, the newly re-uniformed Saitama Seibu Lions. See if you can spot him in this YouTube footage. The catching drill around 5:55 is worth watching too.
  • Perhaps taking a cue from Ichiro, Matsuzaka also found his way to the batting cage. Matsuzaka took 28 swings off Seibu ace Hideaki Wakui, hitting 13 over the fence. A passing John Wasdin commented, "it's Japan's Big Papi", probably with a tone of sarcasm that didn't make the trip from English to Japanese and back. Matsuzaka did make at least one pinch-hitting appearance in his Seibu days.
  • Junichi Tazawa is getting a quick start on his Boston career. He's been in camp for a couple days and is working out with Takashi Saito. Sanspo has pics of his first Red Sox bullpen session: 12. He threw 62 pitches.
  • Tazawa followed that up with a 54-pitch session on the 14th.
  • Takashi Saito celebrated his 39th birthday with a 4km run.
  • And I'll close with an English-language article, an Alex Speier piece reflecting on Hideo Nomo, with comments from Tazawa and Saito.

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