Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Brewers nearing one-year deal with Saito?

According to Japan's Nikkan Sports, the Brewers are nearing a one-year contract with right-hander Takashi Saito worth around $3 million.

Saito posted a quality 2.83 ERA, 1.07 WHIP and 69/17 K/BB ratio over 56 relief appearances for the Braves this past year. He's battled some shoulder problems recently, but the 40-year-old right-hander is very reliable when healthy and should do well in an eighth inning role for Milwaukee. That $3 million price tag includes performance-based incentives.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Samurai spirit: Liberated Japanese lasses turn seductresses in name of country

Nikkan Gendai Jan. 1This may be the Year of the Rabbit, but Nikkan Gendai (Jan. 1) predicts that Japanese women will not be satisfied nibbling on mere carrots.

The evening tabloid says that the rise of nikushokukei joshi (肉食系女子), or carnivorous women, will continue to pick up steam in 2011. Fuzoku writer Yukio Murakami explains that women are increasingly viewing themselves differently.

“Women believe that they too should be able to freely enjoy sex just as men do,” the sex scribe says. “Even with steady boyfriends they’ll still approach men at train stations as the evening’s last train approaches. The rationale behind such behavior is rooted in simple sexual desire that occurs right before their menstrual period or the thought that it’s better to stay at a love hotel than going home.

“Most of these ladies, aged in their late 20s to late 30s, do not ask for financial compensation,” Murakami continues. “They are simply looking for excitement.”

A similar type of woman can be spotted in the youth Mecca of Shibuya, specifically the Center-gai area.

“Girls with flexible jobs roam around during the day and give signs, such as a wink, to handsome guys,” comments a female writer. “They approach boys of their liking by saying, ‘I don’t need money so let’s go straight to a love hotel.’ Unlike a prostitute, it’s not for quick cash so they won’t pick up just any guy.”

Of course, the question is: Why is this unfolding now?

“While they say it is due to sexual liberation, that is nominal,” asserts Murakami. “The reality is that they see the unease with North Korea and China’s aggression and find it worrisome. Their maternal instinct is making them aggressive in wanting to leave behind more offspring.”

The article surmises that this is similar to the samurai eras of shoguns Oda Nobunaga and Toyotomi Hideyoshi, when similar scenes took place just as their regimes were about to crumble.

2011 could be a dream for womanizers, drools Nikkan Gendai, but the challenge is for you, dear reader, to up your game if you want to be a player. (K.N.)

Source http://www.tokyoreporter.com/2011/01/06/samurai-spirit-liberated-japanese-lasses-turn-seductresses-in-name-of-country/

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Japan football players want bigger rewards: report

Japan's football stars are considering boycotting international matches unless the national association improves bonuses and other conditions, a daily said Saturday.

Lawyers for the Japan Football Association and the Japan Pro-Footballers Association (JPFA) have been negotiating without progress on players' demands, the Nikkan Sports said.

The FA has yet to give a "concrete answer" to the demands, which were in place before this year's World Cup in South Africa, JPFA lawyer Taisuke Matsumoto told the daily. "We must think about our next move."

Matsumoto said the players cannot walk out on World Cup qualifiers and other official tournaments. But the daily said it is highly possible that they would boycott international friendlies.

The lawyer is to hold a meeting with the players on December 27 to discuss their next move when they start a training camp at home for the January 7-29 Asian Cup in Qatar, the Nikkan Sports said.

They are also seeking salary guarantees for injury sustained in internationals, as well as their image rights.

Japan's players are paid no appearance money but are given a daily allowance of 10,000 yen (120 dollars) for taking part in an international. A win or draw gives them a bonus payment which is decided on the ranking of the opponents.

The bonus was 150,000 yen each for the 1-0 friendly win over Paraguay on September 4 and 200,000 yen for the historic 1-0 upset of powerhouse Argentina on October 8, both at home, the daily said.

It was 50,000 yen for the October 12 goalless away draw with South Korea.

The Japanese players would have pocketed 100,000 yen each if they had won the match, compared with a victory bonus set at three times that for the South Koreans, the Nikkan Sports said.

"The FA hasn't changed the amounts of payments since the 2002 World Cup," an anonymous veteran international was quoted by the daily as saying.

"Of course, everyone tries to work hard for the country and themselves. But everyone is a professional and they are staking their life on every match. I want the FA to rate us as other countries do."

Source http://www.google.com/hostednews/afp/article/ALeqM5guy93msVVAhtFvRRgpXCoPNPc1Hg?docId=CNG.9771ea7b2bd897ef76fdca4c0de58582.611