X's re-sign Inoguchi to play centerfield - KTIV News 4 Sioux City IA: News, Weather and Sports

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X's re-sign Inoguchi to play centerfield

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SIOUX CITY, IA – With their third signing of the 2013 season, the X's outfield is already beginning to take shape. The Sioux City Explorers announced today they have re-signed centerfielder, Yusuke Inoguchi, to a 2013 contract. Inoguchi will join Peter Barrows in the X's outfield for 2013.  This upcoming season will mark Inoguchi's second year with the X's.

The Kiryu City, Japan native started his professional baseball career in the States with the Sioux City Explorers in 2012, being signed out of the California Winter League by X's Field Manager, Stan Cliburn. In 96 games, Yusuke appeared at the plate 416 times, compiling a .287 batting average in 366 at-bats, while drawing 27 walks for a .342 on base percentage. The 27-year-old was a solid performer in the X's line-up last season, ranking 2nd in runs (57), doubles (20) and stolen bases (8), and 4th in hits (105) and runs batted in (40).

Defensively, Yusuke saw time at all three positions in the outfield during his debut season with the X's, but later settled in at centerfield for the second half. In 261 chances, the right-hander had 241 put-outs, 11 assists and 9 errors.

"We are excited about bringing our outfielder from the Far East back to Sioux City," stated Cliburn. "He brings excitement to the game with his aggressive play. He also reaches an entire new demographic for the organization and is a Japanese role-model for the Sioux City community."

Prior to his time in Sioux City, Yusuke played professional baseball in Japan from 2007-2010. During those years, he led the league in runs batted in twice (2007, 2008) and was named league MVP in 2009.

The Sioux City Explorers will kick off their 21st season on Saturday, May 4th when players report for Spring Training. The 2013 Home Opener will be Thursday, May 16th versus the Sioux Falls Pheasants.

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