Yasuhiro Ogawa

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Yasuhiro Ogawa
20130929 Yasuhiro Ogawa, pitcher of the Tokyo Yakult Swallows, at Meiji Jingu Stadium.JPG
Tokyo Yakult Swallows – No. 29
Pitcher
Born: (1990-05-16) May 16, 1990 (age 24)
Bats: Right Throws: Right
Professional debut
April 3, 2013 for the Tokyo Yakult Swallows
Career statistics
(through 2014)
Win-Loss 25-10
Earned run average 3.21
Strikeouts 243
Teams
Career highlights and awards

Yasuhiro Ogawa (小川 泰弘 Ogawa Yasuhiro?, born May 16, 1990 in Tahara, Aichi, Japan) is a professional Japanese baseball player. He is a pitcher for the Tokyo Yakult Swallows.

Early Baseball Career[edit]

Born in Aichi Prefecture, he is the youngest of 5 siblings.[1] He started playing baseball in third grade. He joined the Akabane Junior High School's baseball club, and under his lead as the team's ace, he brought the team to the prefectural tournament.

He entered Seisho High School, and played in a Japan-US friendly match during his 2nd year, along with Taishi Nakagawa and Koji Fukutani. In his junior year, his team defeated Iwamizawa High School and advanced to the 2nd round of the 80th Japanese High School Baseball Invitational Tournament.[2]

Upon entering Soka University, he participated in the finals of the New Tokyo University Baseball League as a substitute to the team's ace who injured his left elbow, and beat soon-to-be Giants pitcher Tomoyuki Sugano of Tokai University.[3] In his sophomore year, he became the team's ace pitcher. He came upon Nolan Ryan's Pitcher's Bible, and he will be quoted later on that reading the book prompted him to change his pitching form.[3]

He showed further promise when he established a new league ERA record of 0.12 in his 3rd year, and became the 8th pitcher in league history to achieve a no-hit no-run in his senior year.[4] Ever since he developed his new pitching form, he went on a 21-game winning streak without injuries.[5] He racked up a total of 36 wins and 3 losses throughout his university career, an overall ERA of 0.60, and five League MVP awards.

Tokyo Yakult Swallows[edit]

Ogawa's unique pitching form(Meiji Jingu, 2013)

He was the Swallow's 2nd pick in the 2012 draft, next to Taichi Ishiyama (industrial league). On November 28, he signed a contract with the Swallows for an annual salary of 12 million yen, with an additional signing bonus of 70 million. He was assigned the jersey number 29.[6]

2013

He pitched 6.2 scoreless innings in his first official match on April 3, and secured his first victory when the Swallows beat the Carps by 4 runs, the first among his fellow rookie pitchers to do so.[7] It was also his mother's birthday on that day.[8] His second win came a week later, when he pitched 7 innings against the Chunichi Dragons without surrendering any runs, and gave up only a single hit to Hector Luna.[9]

By mid-season, he pitched his first shutout win,[10] and became the first rookie in franchise history to record his seventh victory before the end of June.[11] He again tossed another shutout a few days later. His pitching prowess showed no signs of stopping when he became the 2nd Swallows pitcher, and the 8th rookie pitcher in NPB history to record a win during the All-Star Series.[12] He then went on a 7-game winning streak (the first Swallows rookie to do so), and his win tally already reached 12 by early August.[13]

Even though the Swallows finished in the rear, Ogawa gave the fans a reason to celebrate in what has otherwise been a very disappointing season. He led the Central League in wins, going 16-4 with a 2.93 ERA in 26 appearances, and received the 2013 Rookie of the Year award.[14]

By December, he still kept on breaking the record books when the Swallows gave him a 44 million yen raise, to make 56 million yen on 2014. This was the highest salary for a Yakult player after their first year, beating Ryo Kawashima's 42 million in 2004.[15]

Playing Style[edit]

His unusual pitching form, most notably his leg kick, earned him the nickname "Ryan" for it was fashioned after the style MLB Hall of Famer Nolan Ryan.[16] Listed at 171 cm (5 ft 7 in), he may lack the advantage of having longer limbs for extra power, but his form has a slower rhythm to it, making his pitches more difficult to time.[4][17] With an overhand delivery, he throws a four-seam fastball typically at high-80s mph (tops out at 150 kph or 93 mph).[18] He can throw decent two-seamers and cutters, sliders, and forkballs.[19]

Personal Info[edit]

Ogawa enjoys reading at cafes on his day off. He likes Italian food and wine.[20]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "燕・小川、新人一番星!母誕生日に決めた". SANSPO.COM. 2013-04-04. p. 2. Retrieved 2013-04-04. 
  2. ^ "成章が新装甲子園「1番星」". Nikkansports.com (日刊スポーツ). 2008-03-23. Retrieved 2012-10-21. 
  3. ^ a b 佐伯要. "アマチュア野球情報最前線". 週刊ベースボール (ベースボール・マガジン社) (2012年4月2日号): 91. 雑誌20441-4/2. 
  4. ^ a b "オリのドラフト候補に"和製ライアン"". DAILY SPORTS ONLINE (デイリースポーツ). 2012-07-24. p. 1. Retrieved 2014-11-18. 
  5. ^ "ライアン小川10勝!新人がセ一番乗り!". スポーツ報知. 2013-07-14. Retrieved 2013-07-14. 
  6. ^ "小川仮契約「新人王」だ". Nikkansports.com (日刊スポーツ). 2012-11-28. Retrieved 2013-05-18. 
  7. ^ "小川6回無失点で新人初勝利". Nikkansports.com (日刊スポーツ)date=2013-04-03. Retrieved 2013-04-04. 
  8. ^ "燕・小川、新人一番星!母誕生日に決めた". SANSPO.COM(サンケイスポーツ). 2013-04-04. p. 3. Retrieved 2013-04-04. 
  9. ^ "ライアン小川 球団新人初2戦2勝!両リーグ唯一防御率0・00". Sponichi Annex (スポーツニッポン). 2013-04-11. Retrieved 2013-04-11. 
  10. ^ "ヤクルト小川、今季新人一番乗りのプロ初完封 リーグトップタイ7勝目". MSN産経ニュース(産経新聞). 2013-06-22. Retrieved 2013-06-23. 
  11. ^ "Default". Nikkansports.com (日刊スポーツ)date=2013-06-23. Retrieved 2013-06-23. 
  12. ^ "菅野→ライアン→石山→藤浪 ルーキー4投手リレーは球宴初". Sponichi Annex (スポーツニッポン). 2013-07-21. Retrieved 2013-07-21. 
  13. ^ "ライアン小川12勝 小川監督「いなかったら借金40くらいか」". Sponichi Annex (スポーツニッポン). 2013-08-04. Retrieved 2013-08-04. 
  14. ^ "Swallows’ Ogawa begins preparations for season". The Japan Times. 2014-01-04. 
  15. ^ "ライアン小川は5600万円「最大限の評価をしていただいた」". Sponichi Annex (スポーツニッポン). 2013-12-10. Retrieved 2013-12-10. 
  16. ^ Jason Coskrey (2013-08-05). "Balentien, Ogawa keep Swallows in spotlight". The Japan Times. 
  17. ^ "ヤクルト・小川泰弘はライアンではなく野茂英雄だ!". web Sportiva. 2013-07-14. Retrieved 2014-11-19. 
  18. ^ "小川9勝ヤ 自己最速150キロ8回1失点". Nikkansports.com (日刊スポーツ). 2014-09-28. Retrieved 2014-09-28. 
  19. ^ 中村和久 (野球). "Professional Report 2012". 週刊ベースボール (ベースボール・マガジン社) (2012年7月23日号): 98–99. 雑誌20444-7/23. 
  20. ^ "Default". Sanspo. 2013-07-28. 

External links[edit]