Thursday, December 12, 2013
The Associated Press
TOKYO — Japanese high school pitcher Shohei Otani said he will stick to his plan of joining a team in Major League Baseball despite being selected in the first round of Japanese baseball's amateur draft.
Otani, who has thrown a fastball 99 and 100 mph, has been scouted by several teams, including the Los Angeles Dodgers and Boston Red Sox.
The Nippon Ham Fighters, Yu Darvish's former team, chose Otani in the first round of Thursday's draft even though the 6-foot-4 right-hander had already said he plans to pursue a career in the major leagues.
The 18-year-old Otani said, "My feelings haven't changed. I'm grateful that they appreciate me but it doesn't change my desire to play in America."
GIANTS: Manager Bruce Bochy has been contemplating who to use as his designated hitter when the World Series shifts to Detroit for Game 3 on Saturday night, but a pitcher has not been among the candidates.
Maybe one should.
San Francisco is the first team to have a pitcher with an RBI in four consecutive games in the same postseason.
Barry Zito, who batted .075 with only two RBI all season, has a pair during the current streak, including an opposite-field RBI single to left off Justin Verlander in the fourth inning of Game 1.
Actually, Bochy has been leaning toward backup catcher Hector Sanchez as the DH for Game 3.
He already has said he plans to have All-Star Buster Posey catch every game.
Bochy could also have Pablo Sandoval as DH and shift slick-fielding Joaquin Arias to third. Aubrey Huff and Ryan Theriot are also options to DH.
TELEVISION: The Giants' 8-3 win over the Detroit Tigers set a record low television rating for a World Series opener.
Fox said Wednesday night's game received a 7.6 rating and 12 share, and that it was seen by 12.2 million viewers, according to fast national ratings by Nielsen Media Research.
Fox said viewership fell after San Francisco took a 6-0 lead behind Pablo Sandoval, who wound up tying the Series record with three home runs.
Still, Fox was the highest-rated network in prime time and had its highest-rated prime-time program since May's season finale of "American Idol."
"When you consider what they peaked at, before the blowout, it was fabulous," Fox senior executive vice president David Hill said.
"It was the most popular thing on American television last night."
VETERANS HONORED: Major League Baseball held a ceremony before Game 2 honoring World War II-era veterans who also played in the majors as part of its Welcome Back Veterans program.
Nicholas Kimmel, a corporal in the Marines, threw out the first pitch with Giants Hall of Famer Willie Mays, who missed most of 1952 and all of the 1953 season while serving in the Army in Korea. Kimmel was injured on his second tour of duty in Afghanistan on Dec. 1, 2011. He was building a patrol base for the Georgian Army when he stepped on an improvised explosive device, losing both legs and his left arm.
BUD SELIG is telling the Bay Area baseball teams and their fans to be patient.
The baseball commissioner is still working on the issue of territorial rights and determining whether the Oakland Athletics will be allowed to proceed with plans to build a new ballpark and relocate 40 miles south to San Jose – into the Giants' territory in technology-rich Silicon Valley.
Selig said before Game 2 that the A's can't survive in their current venue in the aging Oakland Coliseum and need a new ballpark.
Selig insists the situation is "still on the front burner."