The Nippon-Ham Fighters won the rights to negotiate with high school slugger Kotaro Kiyomiya in a much-anticipated pro baseball draft held in Tokyo on Oct. 26.

Kiyomiya launched 111 home runs during his three-year career at Tokyo’s Waseda Jitsugyo High School, gaining the attention of a trove of teams in this year’s draft.

Seven teams expressed interest in Kiyomiya, and they entered a lottery to decide which lucky franchise obtained the rights to negotiate a contract with the 18-year-old first baseman.

Nippon-Ham is looking for a slugger to fill the large shoes of Shohei Otani, the right-handed starting pitcher who also occasionally filled in as designated hitter for the Pacific League team. Otani has indicated he plans to play in the major leagues next year.

The other teams expressing interest in Kiyomiya, who bats left, were the Lotte Marines, Yakult Swallows, Yomiuri Giants, Rakuten Eagles, Hanshin Tigers and Softbank Hawks.

Kiyomiya ties the record of seven teams naming a high school player in the draft set in 1995 by Kosuke Fukudome, who would later play for the Chicago Cubs.

The record among all players is eight teams. The first time that happened was in 1989, when Hideo Nomo was chosen by eight of the 12 teams in Nippon Professional Baseball.

After a brilliant career with the Kintetsu Buffaloes, Nomo joined the Los Angeles Dodgers, blazing a trail for a host of Japanese stars to move to the major leagues.