The Opening Day lineup for Friday night's game against the Carp has been anounced.
It's been posted by yakyubaka and Nikkan Sports.
Here is the lineup and my thoughts on it:
CF Yohei Oshima - He's had a good preseason and it's once again his job to lose. I don't think he will.
2B Masahiro Araki - I've seen enough of Araki, but he's been with the team for a long time. Let him start the first game then sit him on the bench the rest of the season.
3B Hector Luna - Hopefully he can get off to a hot start like he did last year.
RF Ryosuke Hirata - He's earned his spot.
1B Masahiko Morino - Michihiro Ogasawara and Alexis Gomez are other options, but Morino is the logical choice. Gomez didn't show enough in the preseason and Ogasawara will probably be in more of a pinch-hitting role. I think Morino will get most of the time at first at least to start the season.
LF Kazuhiro Wada - Still crushing the ball at the age of 41, hit .382 for the preseason.
SS Anderson Hernandez - Veteran player, seems to do things the right way in the field. Too early to tell how useful he'll be at the plate. I'd like to see him at second and Naomichi Donoue at short in the early season. Donoue has a much higher upside than Araki though he hasn't put it together at the plate yet. Hopefully Shuhei Takahashi will be in the mix sooner rather than later as well.
C Motonobu Tanishige - Like he would sit himself on Opening Night.
P Kenshin Kawakami - A bit of surpise pick as Yudai Ono looked like he'd pitched his way into this start. I like the choice though, Kawakami has done a lot for the Dragons and I wouldn't be surprised if this was his last season.