Nippon Professional Baseball’s Central League is considering announcing the starting pitchers before all of its games, a proposal that is being met with mixed reactions among some pitching coaches and managers.
Although the idea has so far only been broached on an informal basis, the reform would bring the league into line with the Pacific League, which has been announcing the starting pitchers since 1994.
If it is brought before the Central League board of directors’meeting on March 1, the system could be introduced this season.
Chunichi Dragons team representative Ryohei Sato said: “The topic just naturally came up. The board of directors has not officially discussed it. We can't implement the system unless all six club teams agree.”
Yomiuri Giants representative Atsushi Harasawa said: “It’s true that the topic has come up, but we’re only toying with the idea. We haven’t really had a full discussion.”
There are varying opinions from the dugouts of Central League teams.
Chunichi Dragons manager Morimichi Takagi said he doesn’t mind what happens, but DeNA BayStars pitching coach Yui Tomori was firmly opposed.
“I am adamantly against this. We’re not at a level where we can reveal our starting pitcher,” he said.
Hanshin Tigers manager Yutaka Wada said: “There are some positive aspects to it, but some managers might think that predicting starting pitchers is a game strategy, so it’s hard to say.”
Yakult Swallows manager Junji Ogawa said: “I think there are pros and cons, but it may lead to increased fan attendance considering some of the team’s circumstances. There could be positive effects.”
Hiroshima Carp pitching coach Yutaka Ono said: “I’ll obey the rules if it comes to it. If it happens I won’t have to worry about extra ruses (to hide who the starting pitcher is going to be.)”
The Central League experimented with announcing pitchers in 1994 in certain games such as on Sundays but later dropped the idea. Announcements have not been made before interleague matches since 2005.
- « Prev
- Next »