Ace Yamamoto, Yamazaki in danger of leaving, injuries to mainstays such as Raoh and Benrin… Orix in the dark, but still on the brink of a fourth straight championship. | FRIDAY DIGITAL

Ace Yamamoto, Yamazaki in danger of leaving, injuries to mainstays such as Raoh and Benrin… Orix in the dark, but still on the brink of a fourth straight championship.

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Ace Yamamoto Certain to Join Major League Baseball

After winning three consecutive league championships, the Orix are now in the midst of a dark cloud.

Ace Yushin Yamamoto, who will try out for the majors by posting his name, and Fukuya Yamazaki, who declared his FA status, are in danger of leaving the team, and a number of the mainstays of the batting lineup, including Yutaro Sugimoto, aka Raoh, and Kotaro Benibayashi, are injured. …… The players who contributed to the team’s victory are leaving the team and leaving the lineup.

Yamamoto and Yamazaki will be out of the lineup,” said Mr. Yamamoto. “Simply put, if Yamamoto and Yamazaki leave, we will lose 27 wins (Yamamoto won 16 games and Yamazaki won 11 this season). The loss of two rotation pitchers is significant. Without Sugimoto and Benrin, the batting lineup will be considerably less connected. If this situation continues, a decline in scoring will be inevitable.

Building a development system with Nichi-Ham’s staff

The Orix are in a predicament that is not too much to say that the team is in danger of extinction. However, no great impatience can be sensed from those involved with the team.

Of course we are in a critical situation, but Orix has a solid development system. Orix has a solid development system, and it is largely due to the fact that they have recruited excellent talent from Nippon Ham, the team that once nurtured Yu Darvish and Shohei Otani. GM Junichi Fukura, manager Satoshi Nakajima, pitching coach Kazuyuki Atsusawa, and many other former Nippon Ham staff members, including trainers, have been brought in, and a system for nurturing young players has been established.

Last year, when our main hitter, Masanao Yoshida, was transferred to the Red Sox, it was said that we were in a crisis. They said they could not fill Yoshida’s hole. This season, however, the team has successfully filled Yoshida’s hole, thanks to the success of Hiromasa Tongu, who won the top spot in the batting order. Young pitchers such as Shunpeita Yamashita are developing as well. As long as the development system is solid, there is no great concern for the future.

Of course, it is not only about development. The team also acquired Ryoma Nishikawa, a center fielder for Hiroshima who had declared his FA status, with a large 4-year, over 1.2 billion yen contract (estimated).

The first-round pick, Seiya Yokoyama (Ueda Nishi High School, Nagano Prefecture), is the No. 1 high school batter in the draft, and the second-round pick, Kosuke Kawachi (St. Catherine’s High School, Ehime Prefecture), and the third-round pick, Kaiyuki Higashimatsu (Kyoei High School, Aichi Prefecture) are both serious players who throw a fastball of over 150 km/h. “We have a unique strategy of competing with other teams as much as possible. ORIX has a unique strategy of not competing with other teams, and has been able to acquire players who have both potential and immediate impact.

The “Orix of development” has young players growing up and new players appearing one after another. Even if the ace and mainstay players leave the team, the holes can be filled. ORIX seems to be on the right track to a fourth consecutive league championship.

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