Takumi Kuriyama (栗山 巧)
- Bats Left, Throws Right
- Height 5' 10", Weight 187 lb.
Takumi Kuriyama has been a regular outfielder for the Seibu Lions for several years despite lacking the pop expected from a corner outfielder.
Kuriyama was a 4th-round draft pick of the Seibu Lions in 2002 and spent two years at ni-gun. He was 1 for 3 for Seibu in the 2004. Seibu had been rotating the right field job between Tatsuya Ozeki and Tomoaki Sato that season. Ozeki had struggled and Sato was injured the next year, so Kuriyama got a crack in 2005 and hit a strong .297/.357/.455 as a regular leadoff batter.
In 2006, Kuriyama battled Kazuki Fukuchi, G.G. Sato and Tomoaki Sato for time in right and hit .268/.350/.380 in 63 games. The next year, G.G. Sato won the right field job, but Kuriyama still saw significant playing time, getting 302 AB and batting .278/.380/.401.
In 2008, the 24-year-old replaced departed free agent Kazuhiro Wada in left field and responded very well, hitting .317/.376/.450. He had 31 doubles and stole 17 bases in 25 tries. Kuriyama was 4th in the Pacific League in batting average, trailing Rick Short, Hiroyuki Nakajima and Munenori Kawasaki. He tied Yasuyuki Kataoka for the PL lead in hits (176), tied Short and Tuffy Rhodes for 7th in doubles (31), was 10th in runs (76), tied for 3rd in sacrifice hits (23), tied Nobuhiko Matsunaka for second in sacrifice flies (8), was 7th in OBP and 9th in steals.