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Five FA's receive Ikusei deals; Kattoh gets his payday?

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Five FA's receive Ikusei deals; Kattoh gets his payday?
Three of the Hawks' free agents were signed to ikusei deals today, all of them pitchers: Akihiro Yanase, Ryuta Ohtahara, and Shinya Suzuki. Both Yanase and Suzuki had Tommy John surgery, in addition to removing bone spurs from their elbows. Ohtahara was a low-round draft pick for the Hawks in 2007, and has not pitched above ni-gun in his career.

Two more players from other teams also joined the Hawks' ikusei ranks: outfielder Hiroaki Ohnishi from Yokohama, and infielder Yuji Ohshiro from Hanshin.

In other team news, the front office decided to give reliever Keisuke Kattoh a huge raise to the tune of 45 million yen ($544,000), up 36 million yen from last season (9 million yen, $109,000). However, Kattoh was so shocked that he put the offer on hold so he could think things over. Quite frankly, he deserves it with the amazing numbers he put up last year (2-0, 2.96, 76IP).

Finally today, Kenta Nakanishi received a number change: he goes from 27 to 31. His former number is expected to go to Toru Hosokawa.


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Michael Westbay
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