Rookie duo from ‘surprise breakout’ ranks 1-2 in most hits.

In Nippon Professional Baseball, a pair of rookie hitters from socialized baseball are making waves by leading the league in hits in exhibition games. The two players, who both went 4-for-4 to earn their spots in the lineup, are both social baseball players who went undrafted in their senior year of high school.

As of Nov. 23, Ryuki Watarai, 21, a rookie for the Yokohama DeNA BayStars, leads the team with 20 hits in exhibition games. Yomiuri Giants rookie Sasaki Sasaki (24) is tied for second with 17 hits, along with Seiya Hosogawa (Chunichi) and Teruaki Sato (Hanshin).

Watarai is 4-for-7 (29 for 48) with an OPS of .930 in 15 games. Sasaki is 4-for-5 (17-for-41) with an OPS of .981 in 15 games. While neither player has played a full plate appearance, they are first and second in batting average among players with 30 or more plate appearances.

Watarai started in right field against Nippon Ham on March 23 at Eskon Field in Sapporo, Japan, and went 2-for-4 with a pair of multi-hit games.

In his first two at-bats, 안전놀이터 he was stranded on a fielder’s choice and a grounder to first base, respectively, but in the sixth inning, with the bases loaded and two outs, Watarai singled to right field. It was the game-winning hit and Yokohama won 1-0. Watarai added an RBI single to right field two batters later in the eighth inning.

It was Watarai’s second consecutive multi-hit game, following a game against Nippon Ham on Feb. 22.

He has now hit in 16 consecutive games in the starting lineup, a streak that began on Feb. 21 in a scrimmage against Hiroshima. His strong shoulder in the outfield defense also allows him to play consistently as a top-hitting right fielder.

Yomiuri Sasaki has also secured his position as the top-hitting center fielder with a blistering performance in the exhibition games. Sasaki started in center field against Rakuten at the Tokyo Dome in Japan on March 23 and went 0-for-3 with no hits.

After striking out swinging in the first inning and being retired on a fielder’s choice in the third, Sasaki drew three foul pitches with runners on first and third in the fifth inning and hit a seven-pitch sacrifice fly to right field on a 1-2 pitch. It was Yomiuri’s only run of the day and tied the game 1-1.

Sasaki didn’t record a hit until the seventh inning, when he grounded out to first base. With the no-hitter, Sasaki dropped from 4-for-4 to 4-for-5.

New Yomiuri manager Shinnosuke Abe has quickly become a staple of the team, to the point that he has announced his intention to start Sasaki in the outfield on Opening Day.

A Yomiuri rookie hasn’t been in the opening day lineup since Abe started the opening game as a rookie in 2001.

This year, Sasaki will break the 23-year record.

Watarai went undrafted as a senior at Yokohama High School and joined the ENEOS of social baseball, where he played three seasons. There was a reason he chose the highly competitive social baseball team over a college team.

“If you go to college, you can go to the draft again after four years,” Watarai says. In social baseball, you have a chance to be drafted after three years of playing, so I wanted to go pro a year earlier,” he says.

During his three years with the ENEOS, he gained strength in his bat and improved his contact rate. Playing in the outfield as well as the infield, 카지노사이트 추천 he improved both his shoulder and speed. Watarai was drafted first overall by Yokohama in last year’s draft, after three other organizations battled for the top spot.

Sasaki also went undrafted out of high school. Sasaki joined the Hitachi Factory, a social baseball organization, where he continued his career and was drafted third overall by Yomiuri in last year’s draft.

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