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Rhodes and Kiyohara Not To Be Retained

Discussion in the NPB News forum
Rhodes and Kiyohara Not To Be Retained
Sources close to the Yomiuri Giants said Tuesday that the Giants are unlikely to re-sign first baseman Kazuhiro Kioyhara and outfielder Tuffy Rhodes.

Baseball critics point to the negative influence the two players have had on the team as the reason for their release. Kiyohara was unhappy about team policy, but eventually relented, pledging to support manager Tsuneo Horiuchi in a meeting with club officials who had attempted to trade him.

Rhodes lashed out at fielding coach Sumio Hirota and was fined 2 million yen. Rhodes was critical of his teammates, and refused to take part in a customary hero interview.

Kiyohara has a career .273 average, 514 HR's, and 1,491 RBI's. Rhodes has a career .285 average, 360 HRs (foreign best), and 993 RBI's (foreign best). [Full Story - Japan Ball]

As for Rhodes, I don't excuse his attitude as it was truly uncalled for this year. Though I truly feel sorry that Rhodes signed with the Giants. I think Rhodes should have stayed with Kintestu or picked another team to play with, anybody except Yomiuri. If Rhodes' MRI is fine, he will be a perfect fit for the Buffaloes in my opinion. He was a star player with the Kintestu Buffaloes, a popular player, and gives them a big bat, too. Rakuten would be another great place for Rhodes, as it gives them the big star they need.

As for Kiyohara, I can't understand all the hate on Kiyohara by some. Kiyohara has had a great career, one that is HOF material. If Kiyohara decides to play next year, I think Orix or Rakuten would also be a great place for him.
Comments
Re: Rhodes and Kiyohara Not To Be Retained
[ Author: Christopher | Posted: Aug 31, 2005 11:02 AM | HAN Fan ]

The dislike of Kiyohara seems to be mostly restricted to this board. Among the Japanese baseball public he is revered as a truly great player. A year or two ago he could have perhaps moved to Tigers and finished his career with them on a high note, but now I don't see even Rakuten or Orix going for him. His loyalty was always to the Giants and his desire was always to play for them. It's a sad end to a great career.

I have a suspicion that Rhodes' career in Japan has also finished. His attitude was a major problem this year and that kind of thing counts a lot with Japanese coaches and management.
Re: Rhodes and Kiyohara Not To Be Retained
[ Author: matteo | Posted: Sep 2, 2005 10:40 PM ]

Last week I found a copy of the Gendai Sports paper on the train. Little did I know (until I turned to the middle page) that it was one of those porno/gossip salaryman papers. I'm sure I received many strange looks by the surrounding passengers, however there was an article saying that there was a chance that Rhodes, Kiyohara, and Nakamura could all play for the Buffaloes next season. They sighted the friendship between Rhodes/Nakamura and Nakamura/Kiyohara as the main reason. I wasn't aware that Nakamura and Kiyohara were friends, but I suppose that when they played in the Nichi-Bei series together, or against each other in all star games they may have become close.

Does anyone think that there is any possibility for all three to be playing for the Buffaloes next season, or was it just a puff piece for the rumour mill?
Re: Rhodes and Kiyohara Not To Be Retained
[ Author: mijow | Posted: Sep 3, 2005 7:44 AM | HT Fan ]

- I wasn't aware that Nakamura and Kiyohara were friends, but I suppose that when they played in the Nichi-Bei series together, or against each other in all star games they may have become close.

Remember that Kiyohara was with the Seibu Lions in the Pacific League for most of his career, so he often played against Nakamura.
Re: Rhodes and Kiyohara Not To Be Retained
[ Author: Guest: John Brooks | Posted: Sep 3, 2005 7:51 AM ]

- Does anyone think that there is any possibility for all three to be playing for the Buffaloes next season?

I'm not too sure if any will play next year at all. I doubt if Nakamura will play with the Buffaloes. If I remember right, he asked to be posted because he was displeased with the merger. Rhodes' attitude was seen as unacceptable (but Orix might still be a good fit for him if his MRI is OK). But I'm leaning against him getting signed. Finally, Kiyohara, I think, will retire (Orix might sign him, but I doubt it - they were interested in him last year, but it looks like he will retire).
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