SS Shuta Tonosaki, C Tatsuyuki Uemoto and IF Naoto Watanabe were interviewed in regards to the new year of 2016, which is the year of the monkey in the zodiac. All three of them were given a Q&A. Here is what they said. Thank you very much again to @shiba_scope for the translation help.
Do you know what you three have in common?
Uemoto: "[We were born in the year of the] Monkey."
Note: 2016 is year of monkey in the zodiac, so those who were born in 2004, 1992, 1980 and 1966 are in that year. Watanabe and Uemoto were born in 1980 while Tonosaki was born in 1992.
Q: What were you doing in the previous year of monkey in 2004?
Uemoto [then 24]: "[It was my] 2nd year of NPB and sometimes [I] took part in games at ni-gun, but
[I] more strongly remember that I used to keep doing supplementary training after games such as the "duck walk" along the fence."
Tonosaki [then 12]: "I lived in Aomori, where in winter you cannot play outside [due to heavy snow] and [was] always practicing without using balls, which was quite tough."
Watanabe [then 24]: "I played working in a company aiming for winning national amateur championship. Our team won in the previous year and I was busy in working, training and playing in the games with high motivation."
Q: [What is] this year's goal?
Uemoto: "Keep focusing on my own achievement without caring too much about others, because the time I can play is getting limited and I don't want to have any regret when regretting. This year, I want to get fully prepared for a great performance in the season."
Tonosaki: "I could not get good results in 2015, which caused [an] inconvenience to team. So this year, I will try hard to exceed last year's performance."
Watanabe: "Simply to win a championship. I have come to an age to be called as a "veteran," but physically still too young to age. On the other hand, I know that in my age poor performance is not overlooked. So by getting good results, I want to contribute to team."
Q: What will the next year of the monkey (2028) be for you?
Watanabe: "I always have goals/dreams throughout the previous 35 years, so even when I am 48, I want to have something I can concentrate on, something which gives enjoyment to my everyday life."
Tonosaki: "Hard to imagine, but seeing [players older than me] playing hard at the age of over 30, I would like to be like them."
Uemoto: "Let's just say that I will have lost my hair (laugh). I am not sure what I will be doing, but wherever I am, I would like to give back what I have been given to society, to the Lions if I am still with them, or to the sport of baseball."
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