‘Japanese Babe Ruth’ set to take MLB by storm

first_imgKiss-and-tell matinee idol’s conquests: True stories or tall tales? Japan’s Shohei Ohtani follows a double in the seventh inning during the international friendly baseball match between Japan and the Netherlands at the Tokyo Dome on November 13, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / KAZUHIRO NOGIShohei Ohtani is a 100-mile-an-hour fastball pitcher and home-run slugger who once dreamed of skipping the Japanese leagues to head straight for the big time stateside.Hailed in the US media as “Japan’s Babe Ruth”, the 23-year-old is the hottest Japanese export since Hideki Matsui and Ichiro Suzuki took the Major Leagues by storm in the early 2000s.ADVERTISEMENT Phivolcs records 2 ‘discrete weak ash explosions’ at Taal Volcano Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Coco’s house rules on ‘Probinsyano’ set Jake says relationship with Shaina ‘goes beyond physical attraction’ At the starting lineOhtani has wowed fans with stellar successes both at the plate and on the mound, supported by his stoic self-discipline.After five seasons in Japan, Ohtani has a career earned-run-average of 2.52 and 624 strikeouts in 85 game appearances as a pitcher. He also boasts a career batting average of .286 and has smashed 48 home runs in 403 game appearances as a batter.Ohtani’s brilliance led the Fighters to their first championship in 10 years in 2016, catapulting him to global fame.He was crowned the most valuable player of the Pacific League in 2016 and was chosen as the league’s best pitcher and designated hitter.Ohtani’s discipline drove him to his success, Fighters manager Hideki Kuriyama, said in a recent magazine interview.However, he advised Ohtani, who weighs 97 kilogrammes (213 pounds), to bulk up his physical frame.“It’s like I see both Ichiro and Hideki Matsui in Shohei Ohtani,” Kuriyama said.“At the Fighters, he fulfilled tasks that many said were impossible,” he said. 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Bulls end 10-game skid with OT win over Hornets LATEST STORIES View comments It’s too early to present Duterte’s ‘legacy’ – Lacson “There has never been a player who has performed two ways and reached his great height,” Masa Yamamoto, retired Japanese baseball pitcher, wrote for the Nikkei newspaper.“He is the best talent in Japanese baseball. Without exaggerating, he is a talent seen only once in a century,” he wrote.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSRedemption is sweet for Ginebra, Scottie ThompsonSPORTSMayweather beats Pacquiao, Canelo for ‘Fighter of the Decade’SPORTSBrian Heruela arrival bolsters Phoenix backcourt, defenseOn Friday, Ohtani agreed to sign with the Los Angeles Angels capping a frenzy of courtship and speculation that had surrounded the player’s move to the US major leagues — and fulfilling his childhood dream of playing stateside. The Angels, who must pay the $20 million posting fee to Ohtani’s Japanese club the Hokkaido Nippon-Ham Fighters, have until December 22 to complete the deal. OSG plea to revoke ABS-CBN franchise ‘a duplicitous move’ – Lacson MOST READ “He will continue to get better. He is only standing at the starting line,” he said.Be number oneOhtani moves to MLB after surgery in October for an ankle injury, with the Fighters announcing that he will regain full fitness by mid-January.He also tore his left hamstring in the 2017 season. While Ohtani insists on playing two ways, observers say he will eventually have to focus on one skill-set — most likely pitching.Yu Darvish, a former Fighter who moved to the Texas Rangers in 2012 before joining the Dodgers, advised Ohtani to focus on his pitching in the US.“If he wanted to go to the Majors, it (the two-way approach) would absolutely work against him,” Darvish said in a 2014 interview on TV Asahi.“He is a pitcher. There are powerful batters everywhere. Ones with good shoulders and speed. Fundamentally, it is extremely difficult to compete with them,” he said.“But pitching gives him an opportunity to be the number one. You must choose the opportunity to be the number one,” said Darvish. A strapping 6-foot-4 (1.93 metres) from rural Iwate in northern Japan, the baby-faced Ohtani originally wanted to join the US big leagues straight from high school after dominating at that level, passing over Japan’s professional league.However, that could have proved costly for Nippon Professional Baseball, fearing a disastrous precedent that might doom one of Asia’s oldest sporting leagues.Ohtani relented after the Fighters, based in Sapporo on the northern-most Japanese island of Hokkaido, offered to let him play as a designated hitter in games he was not pitching — a rare feat in both Japan and the US.Armed with pitches clocking faster than 160 kilometres (roughly 100 miles)-per-hour and with dozens of home runs to his name, he has drawn comparisons to Babe Ruth, the American baseball icon who began his career as a pitcher but is best remembered as a New York Yankee home-run artist.Unlike legendary Ruth, however, Ohtani is still an evolving talent after only five professional seasons, and Japanese media have treated the nickname as a validation of his talent among US baseball fans.ADVERTISEMENTlast_img read more

Putu Mining Pumps US$3M to Support 2015 Social Programs

first_imgPutu Iron Ore Mining (PIOM) on Monday disclosed that it has contributed about US$3 million into government coffers, as part of its annual responsibility to implement social programs in three counties in the Southeastern part of the country beginning 2015.The chief executive officer (CEO) of PIOM, Christian Messurenko, named Grand Gedeh, Sinoe and RiverGee as the counties that would benefit from his company’s annual social responsibility to government.“In September 2014, PIOM’s annual social contribution in the amount of US$3 million was paid into government coffers through the Liberia Revenue Authority (LRA),” Messurenko further disclosed.Explaining further about his company’s settlement of its financial obligation with government, Messurenko disclosed that “We can confirm payment of all our financial obligations to government for fiscal year 2014/2015 in the tune of US$5 million and we look forward to resuming full activity within the new year of 2015.”He made the disclosure on Monday, when he presented an Earth Lab equipment valued as US$50,000 to the  mining, engineering and geology departments of the University of Liberia (UL) in a short presentation ceremony held at the university’s Fendell Campus, outside of Monrovia.Presenting the lab, the PIOM boss added that it was in fulfillment of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) entered into by his company and the university in 2013, to support mining, engineering and geology studies at the university.He said, procurement and installation of the earth lab is fully funded by his company.“Putu has consistently demonstrated commitment to honoring its corporate social responsibility and all other obligations under the MOU,” he emphasized.Commenting further on his company’s contribution in the country’s education sector, Messurenko noted that they also contributed an amount of US$200,000 into a General Education Fund as was provided for in the Mineral Development Agreement (MDA) also singed between his company and the government.“This education fund which is launched today,” he added” will be used to provide scholarship  and vocational training to students from the South East Counties of Grand Gedeh, Sinoe and River Gee, in order to equip them with marketable skills in the areas of construction and to prepare them for careers in mining, engineering and geology.”Messurenko assured his company’s commitment to carry out mining project in Liberia, admitting “We have been experiencing difficulties since we obtained our mining license from government in July 2014.”He made specific reference to the escalation of the deadly Ebola virus disease (EVD).“While the company was about to begin its construction phase of its project, we were faced with the prevailing health situation, which has caused some of our major foreign contractors to suspend their activities,” he stated. “As a consequence,” he continued, “the company has been constrained to slow down its operations and as a result, we would regrettably begin reducing staff from November through December 2014.“We want to use the opportunity to assure government and its international partners that we will continue to remain with you people combat the deadly virus,” he said, promising his company’s commitment in the Ebola virus fight.He added that they have demonstrated, over the past months, by providing material and financial support to the Ebola Task Force in Grand Gedeh and Sinoe Counties respectively.“We have equally supported the efforts of Medicines Sans Frontieres by providing five (5) mobile offices for use at the ELWA medical facility,” he said.He continued, “We want to reassure partners that the constructions phase of the project, which was to have started in 2014 to 2017, we are anticipating starting next year.”Receiving the equipment on behalf of the university, Dr. Emmet Dennis, president of the UL lauded the company for the assistance that would help to improve leaning activities especially for engineering students in his university.Commenting on the scholarship assistance, Dr. Dennis said that only deserving students would benefit from it.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Ex-GOL Officials Risk Weah’s Wrath

first_imgPres. Weah asks former officials still with government issued vehicles to return in two weeksPresident issues 2 weeks Ultimatum to turn government properties in or else…Some former government officials who did not heed the order of President George Weah to return government vehicles that were assigned to them could face his wrath after his two weeks’ ultimatum expires.Though President Weah did not indicate how many vehicles are involved, he said some former officials of the Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf-led administration are still in possession of vehicles assigned to them while serving in government.He warned them to turn over those vehicles, an order he had stated prior to his inauguration.President Weah declared this after he returned home after his three-leg successful visits to Senegal, Morocco, and France.Speaking at an intercessory service held for his safe return home at the Dominion Church in Congo Town, Monrovia, President Weah said, “Our government is having a problem and these are just simple problems.“People who worked with the former government are hiding and scrapping vehicles they used in the past government. They are stealing all the cars leaving this new government with the burden to buy new vehicles. What is a car that you cannot be honorable enough to leave behind?“All of you who took government properties, you have two weeks to bring them back. If not, we will come for them. You have two weeks.”He added: “We have to be true to our government. I am glad that I am saying it in a church. You got two weeks or we will come for them to be used for the benefit of our country.”The ultimatum comes amid efforts by the Director General of the General Services Agency (GSA), Mary Broh and her team to retrieve GOL vehicles and other properties from past officials.This is the second of such an ultimatum as the GSA had initially issued a similar caveat for those former officials to turn in government properties. The initial call might have fallen on deaf ears, but the reiteration by the President seems to add some weight, many officials say.Many believe that President Weah is gradually realizing that, in spite of his overwhelming victory, it will take tough decisions and measures, sometimes against his own kith, if his administration is to succeed.Weah’s declaration comes amid speculations about his tenacity, ability and courage to make tough decisions.  Although some have considered him politically strong but ineffective, others say his success would definitely boil down to radical decisions and measures.The President accused some of these former officials of damaging the vehicles and or stealing them while others were hiding the vehicles in bushes. He warned that his government will go for these vehicles if said former officials don’t honorably return them.Afraid that his government will be accused of witch hunting, he indicated, “We don’t want people to start to accuse us of witch hunting, so the best thing to do is to bring government’s property back. I am not a professor. I am a practical person. I am not here to make the news but to make an impact if I am given the chance.”“Enforcement only becomes necessary when it becomes unavoidable. Remember, it is initially diplomacy, then sanction, and then force when such a remedy becomes unavoidable,” a top government official told the Daily Observer on Friday.“Are these stubborn officials saying that all their money and lots of gas slips they benefited from can’t be used to buy their own cars? They should have parked these cars immediately when they were replaced. They are taking this government for a joke, but we will teach those people some lessons,” he added, though he did not mention how many vehicles are involved or who are those still holding on to the vehicles.Liberians Are Our Own ProblemPresident Weah also noted that no nation or people should be blamed for the underdevelopment of the Liberian state as the nation is what it is because of greed and corruption.He blasted critics who believe that Liberia has benefited nothing from her historic and long existing relationship with the United States.The US Government, Weah indicated, has always assisted Liberia but past governments failed to make these benefits trickle down to change the lives of other Liberians.“There is no way you can suggest that the US is our problem. America is our ally and France is America’s ally so the friends of America are our friends.“How can we blame America when we have failed to manage billions of dollars given to this country by America? Why do we want to blame people when we are in charge? Let us change our attitude. Everything that comes in is for the Liberian people.”He added: “We want to succeed and we want Liberians to succeed. We want our people to benefit so we cannot blame America, China, and France for our setbacks.”The President called on officials of his government, who have been given the opportunity to serve to do it with diligence. “Those of you with the opportunity to serve, you need to do due diligence and for Liberia to change we must change our attitude,” he said.Meanwhile, many Liberians have indicated that if the President is to realize his good intentions that are summed up in his ‘Pro-Poor Governance’ mantra, he has to be tough as Liberian government officials always behave like “spoiled children.”“Weah has to do what he has to do to establish a lasting legacy. But being lenient may make things difficult for him to move forward,” one of his staunch supporters, notedShare this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

LBGT community hosts human pride march

first_imgScores of Guyanese on Saturday joined a march organized and executed to mark the end of the LGBT Pride Week in Guyana.Despite threats from the Georgetown Ministers’ Fellowship on Friday, hundreds turned up to the Pride Festival and Parade organized by the Guyana LGBT community.The march, according to the organiser, Managing Director of the Society Against Sexual Orientation Discrimination (SASOD), Joel Simpson, was really a protest and an opportunity for the LGBT community to continue its empowerment work.The march was also held to show the LGBT community’s concern over Government’s non-fulfillment of its 2015 campaign promise, he said.Speaking with Guyana Times at the rally was former Education and Human Services Minister, Priya Manickchand, a member of parliament for the PPP/C.Manickchand said her party does not support discrimination against minority groups, and Guyanese are committed to tolerance and inclusionary democracy.On Thursday last, the Religious Fellowship, at a press conference, said: “The Christian community, which makes up more than 60 per cent of the population, is concerned by efforts to pressure the Government to legalize buggery.”The Fellowship demanded that Government make known where its support lies in regard to decriminalisation of homosexuality, and threatened to withhold votes for the APNU/AFC administration.Pastor Desmond Rogers had asserted that with the LGBT community being only a mere 10% of Guyana’s population, their political support — which is also being used as leverage against Government — should not place pressure on the administration to “legalise buggery.”According to him, his Fellowship will not support this move, as it is deemed “immoral.”But the march was more about human rights and dignity. There were no calls for the legalisation of same sex marriages, but for the decriminalisation of same sex intimacy among consenting adults, and for an end to discrimination.last_img read more

Trackers go 2-and-2 at Kamloops Thanksgiving tournament

first_imgKAMLOOPS, B.C. – The NEBC Yukon Trackers notched their first pair of wins this season in Kamloops at the Thanksgiving International Classic Midget Tier 1 tournament.As of Sunday, the Trackers had gone 2-and-1 at the tournament, losing their first game against North Vancouver 3-2. Nick Vander Ploeg and Connor Bowie both scored goals in that game, helped by Garyn Waldie and Aiden Craig-Steele.The Trackers pumped up the jam on Saturday, winning game 2 against the Delta Hockey Academy 7-4, and game three blanking Ridge Meadows 1-0. In those two games, Connor Bowie notched 2 goals, while Waldie, Vander Ploeg, Craig-Steele, Logan Kimmie, Curtis Hammond, and Keenan Halverson each scored once. Kimmie and Jayden Picket each notched two helpers in Games 2 and 3, while Halverson, Nathan Bragg, Joel Bourgeois, and Jeridyn Loewen also tallied assists.- Advertisement -On Sunday, the Trackers took to the ice against the Nanaimo Clippers for their final game of the Round Robin. Things looked good initially, as both Nicholas Vanderploeg and Cooper Beamish put the Trackers up 2-0 by the end of the first. Joel Bourgeois assisted on both goals, along with Jeridyn Loewen and Aiden Craig-Steele. In the 2nd period, Nanaimo made it a 2-1 game 8:00 into the frame, but Logan Kimmie responded for the Trackers with 2:00 left in the period, assisted by Craig-Steele and Jayden Piket. In the third period, things took a turn for the worse as the Clippers managed to put the Trackers on their heels with a trio of goals in less than four minutes to take the lead 4-3. After pulling netminder Brandon Clark for the extra attacker, the Clippers sealed the deal to knock the Trackers out of the tournament.The Trackers will be playing their first two games of the Northern Alberta Midget Hockey League this coming weekend, after their season opener in Grande Prairie on October 1st was cancelled due to heavy snow. The Trackers will be taking on the Leduc Roughnecks on Saturday, October 15th at 1:45 p.m. for their home opener. On Sunday, the Trackers are back in action on home ice when they host the Strathcona ACT Warriors at 10:00 a.m.last_img read more

BREAKING: GECOM to halt H2H Registration

first_imgThe Guyana Elections Commission, moments ago, announced that it will be concluding the House to House Registration process on August 31, 2019 instead of October 20, 2019.Please see full GECOM statement below: The Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) has acknowledged that the no-confidence motion passed in the National Assembly on 21st December, 2018 triggered a number of legal challenges in the local Courts and concluded with a ruling by the Caribbean Court of Justice.Cognizant of all that has transpired over the past months, GECOM has an obligation to produce a credible Official List of Electors (OLE) in the first instance and ultimately credible elections within the shortest possible time.After considerable deliberations at the Commission on the way forward regarding the conduct of General and Regional Elections, Chairperson of the Guyana Elections Commission, Justice Claudette Singh, S.C., C.C.H at the Statutory Meetingof the Commission held on 27th August, 2019 has instructed the following:1. House to House Registration must be brought to an end. As such, Order 25 of 2019 published in the Official Gazette should be amended for the exercise to conclude on 31st August, 2019 instead of 20th October, 2019.2. Based on the ruling of the Chief Justice on 14th August, 2019 that House to House Registration is not unlawful and is constitutional, the data garnered from that registration exercise must be merged with the existing National Register of Registrants Database (NRRDB).3. In this regard, the Commission will move to an extensive Claims and Objections Exercise (C&O) before extracting the Preliminary List of Electors (PLE).The Commission will continue to further deliberate on other matters of importance for the holding of General and Regional Elections within the shortest possible time and Secretariat will continue to implement a number of operations activities, in particular training of polling day staff and procurement of non-sensitive materials.last_img read more

Saudi, UAE football teams denied neutral venues for Qatar clashes

first_imgSaudi Arabia, UAE, Bahrain and Egypt in June imposed a total air, land and sea blockade on Qatar after accusing it of backing extremist groups. Qatar has categorically denied the charges.The four nations had also imposed a travel ban on Qatari citizens and barred their nationals from travelling to Qatar, which will host the 2022 World Cup finals.The Asian Football Confederation (AFC) ruled all matches would be played on a home-and-away basis as planned, after Saudi Arabia had called for fixtures against Qatari teams to be shifted to a neutral country.AFC said the decision to maintain the home-and-away format was made after an independent safety and security assessment was completed. Based on the AFC decision, “the Saudi Federation will facilitate the participation of Saudi clubs in the competition,” said a statement by the Saudi federation on Sunday.It however expressed “strong reservation” at the way the AFC decision was made, saying it was not neutral and had been influenced by head of the competitions committee who is from Qatar.The UAE Football Federation issued a similar statement in which it said its clubs will play in Qatar but also expressed reservation at the way the AFC decision was adopted.Both Saudi and UAE federations said they will coordinate with AFC to ensure the safety of their teams when they play in Qatar. Saudi authorities previously insisted that their clubs would only play against Qatari sides on neutral territory amid reports they may boycott the tournament. With the AFC ruling that “clubs from Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates should be played on a home and away basis in 2018 as per the AFC Regulations”, Saudi club football teams are due to travel to Qatar for away matches beginning next month.AFC Secretary General Windsor John told AFP that Saudi Arabia has not lifted the travel ban imposed on its nationals against going to Qatar.Saudi Arabia’s Al Hilal have been placed with Qatar’s Al Rayyan in Group D of the AFC Champions League beginning February 12. Qatar’s Al Sadd are in Group C along with the UAE’s Al Wasl, while in Group B Qatar’s Al Duhail are pitted against the UAE’s Al Wahda. The AFC Asian Champions League is the top continental competition for football clubs in Asia.0Shares0000(Visited 3 times, 1 visits today) 0Shares0000Saudi Arabia’s Al Hilal have been placed with Qatar’s Al Rayyan in Group D of the AFC Champions League, meaning they will play home-and-away fixtures despite the kingdom’s travel ban on its Gulf neighbour © AFP/File / Ali AL-ARIFIDubai, United Arab Emirates, Jan 28 – Saudi and UAE football authorities said on Sunday their teams will play Asian Champions League away matches in Qatar despite a travel ban they have imposed on their Gulf neighbour.The decisions by the Saudi Arabian and United Arab Emirates football federations came after the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) decided overnight in Kuala Lumpur that their teams were required to play in Qatar and also host Qatari teams.last_img read more

BC Oil & Gas Commission completes aerial survey on decommissioned wells

first_imgFORT NELSON, B.C. – The B.C. Oil & Gas Commission has recently completed an aerial survey that looked at 104 decommissioned gas wells east of Fort Nelson.As part of a mandate to ensure the integrity of decommissioned wells, the Commission says they have been conducting aerial surveys for the past three years using a laser-based methane detector mounted on the underside of a helicopter.By using the detector, it allowed for easy access to sites in difficult and inaccessible terrain, in a fast, cost-effective manner.- Advertisement -The OGC says the long-term goal of this program is to obtain a representative sampling of decommissioned wells throughout Northeast B.C.During a survey in July, the OGC says they were able to identify four well sites where methane was detected. Following the detection, the OGC took the required actions to ensure that they are not leaking.The Commission says it intends to continue the aerial inspection program annually,focusing on different areas throughout the Northeast.Advertisementlast_img read more

PRRD awards contract to Tetra Tech to carry out assessment of Old Fort

first_imgFORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – At a Peace River Regional District board meeting on Thursday, November 28, Directors received a report regarding a study on the Old Fort. – Advertisement -The Board has now approved Tetra Tech to carry out the assessment at a cost of $192,250. Since no submissions were accepted during the bidding process in July, Staff recommended that the Board awards a contract to Tetra Tech to conduct a steep slope hazard assessment in the Old Fort Area. Back in April, the Board passed a resolution to retain a geotechnical expert through a public procurement process to carry out a geo-hazard assessment of the Old Fort area, to determine whether there is an opportunity to move forward with future development in the area. The cost of the assessment will be covered through the Development Services function.last_img read more

Spurs have no chance against Arsenal and Liverpool to rule Merseyside – according to talkSPORT fans

first_img Liverpool are being tipped to comfortable beat Everton on Saturday 1 After the brief intermission of the Capital One Cup, attentions have once again returned to the Premier League and a weekend dominated by two huge derbies.In Saturday’s early fixture Liverpool take on Everton at Anfield, with both sides performing well below expectations. Kop boss Brendan Rodgers is hoping that victory on Merseyside will act as a catalyst for his side’s season and it seems as though the majority of players of talkSPORT’s Premier League Predictor game agree, with 50.2 per cent punting for a Liverpool win, with 2-1 the most popular scoreline.It makes bleak reading for Roberto Martinez with just 8.6 per cent believing Everton can cause an upset, but it’s not the most damning prediction of the weekend.That award goes to Tottenham, with just 3.2 per cent of ALL Predictor players believing Spurs will beat Arsenal in the North London derby – live and exclusive on talkSPORT from 5pm.According to a huge 76.4 per cent of players, Spurs have no chance, with Arsenal heavily backed to romp to victory – 2-1, once again being the most popular scoreline.It looks as though there will be no further slip ups for Man United though and despite Louis van Gaal facing a defensive crisis ahead of the visit of West Ham, 72 per cent of players expect the Red Devils to get back on track.Make sure you sign up to talkSPORT’s Premier League Predictor game for your chance to WIN £1m! Click here to register.last_img read more