The Nikkei business daily said Nissan aims to take advantageof the strong yen by importing the cars back to Japan, and willcut new vehicle development by 20 percent in the next five years. Nissan spokeswoman Yuko Matsuda said she could not comment onthe firm's future product plans. Toyota shares rose 2.8 percent to 2,920 yen by midday, morethan double a 1.3 percent rise in the benchmark Nikkei average.N225 Nissan shares edged up 0.3 percent to 315 yen. (Additional reporting by Nichola Groom; Editing by MichaelWatson) Stocks Bonds China Russia.
By the time the 2009 baseball amateur draft concluded last June, the Washington Nationals had added 50 players to their minor league system. But really, other than the first two Stephen Strasburg and Drew Storen the other 48 were unknowns who would quietly slip into the anonymity of the low minor leagues, likely never to be heard from again. A player’s first year can be very telling regarding his hopes of making it to the major leagues. Let’s take a look at the “lower 48” and see how they did in 2009: SecondRound: Jeff Kobernus (2B) Cal Berkley Batted .220-0-2 in 10 games for the Vermont Lake Monsters. Hopefully, his .273 on-base percentage and .244 slugging average are the result of a small at-bat sampling. His father was a minor league player in the 1980’s. Kobernus batted .341-8-17 his junior year before being drafted by the Nationals. ThirdRound: Trevor Holder (RHP) University of Georgia Overall, Holder was 4-3, 6.97 in 11 starts. Holder had an up-and-down season in 2009 and fell to the Nationals in round three. General Manager Mike Rizzo believes that Holder will one day be a middle-of-the-rotation starter for Washington. FourthRound: Anthony Morris (RHP) Kansas State University Though Morris went 0-3 in 10 starts with the Gulf Coast Nationals and Low-A Hagerstown, he had a very impressive 3.38 ERA, allowing 9.3 hits, 1.7 walks and 8.4 strikeouts per 9 innings. Morris was the Big-12 Pitcher of the Year in 2009, going 14-1, 2.09 with 100 strikeouts. He has a 92 mph fastball and a “plus” slider. FifthRound: Miguel Pena (LHP) La Joya High School, Texas Pena didn’t sign with the Nationals, opting to play for San Jacinto Junior College instead. SixthRound: Michael Taylor (SS) Westminster Academy, Fla. Taylor had planned to attend the University of North Florida but was swayed by the Nationals offer of a six-year contract.
He signed quickly on June 11 but it looks like he has yet to make his professional debut. He played for the Nationals’ Instructional League team in Florida last month. SeventhRound: Andrew Weaver (RHP) University of Georgia A teammate of Trevor Holder, Weaver split his first season between the Gulf Coast Nationals and Vermont Lake Monsters of the New York-Penn League. In 10 games, he was 0-1, 3.55 with two saves, allowing 9.9 hits, 2.8 walks and 7.1 strikeouts per 9 innings. Weaver was the closer for the Bull Dogs, saving 10 games while going 4-2, 3.60 in 29 games. With Drew Storen as the team’s future closer, Weaver’s status long-term is uncertain. EighthRound: Roberto Perez (SS) Dorado Academy, Puerto Rico Perez signed in late August and has yet to make his debut with the Nationals. He is considered a defensive shortstop with some pop in his bat.
He was going to attend Oklahoma State before signing with Washington. Former big league shortstop Dickie Thon is his uncle. NinthRound: Taylor Jordan (RHP) Brevard Community College, Florida Jordan started six games for the Gulf Coast Nationals, going 2-0, 3.63. He allowed just 6.5 hits and 2.3 walks per 9 innings while striking out 8.6. 10thRound: Paul Applebee (LHP) Cal State Riverside Applebee played for the GCL Nationals and Vermont, going 0-2, 3.24 while allowing just 8.4 hits and 1.1 walks per 9 innings, striking out 7.5. 11thRound: Justin Bloxom (LF) Kansas State University Bloxom, teammate of fourth-round pick Anthony Morris, batted .228-3-24 in 228 at-bats for Vermont. He had a decent .346 on-base percent, though. 12thRound: Nathan Karns (RHP) Texas Tech University Karns signed just before the deadline and has yet to play for the Nationals. In 13 starts for the Red Raiders, Karns went 4-5 with a 4.20 ERA. Obviously, his talent doesn’t show in his college stats. 13thRound: Patrick Lehman (RHP) George Washington University Lehman was outstanding for Vermont and low-A Hagerstown, going 4.2, 1.97, allowing 6.5 hits, 0.3 walks and 4.6 strikeouts per 9 innings. Wait, 0.3 walks per 9 innings Wow. However, there were some exceptions: 21stRound: Mitchell Clegg (LHP) University of Massachusetts Amherst Clegg was very impressive for the Vermont Lake Monsters this past season. In 10 starts (13 total games), he went 2-4, 2.20, allowing 8.8 hits, 2.0 walks per 9 innings while striking out 4.7. Those are good numbers for even a third or fourth round pick.