Motonobu Tanishige held a press conference at Nagoya Dome on September 21 to announce that he was retiring as a player.
A few notes taken from various sources:
- There are times he thinks "the time for retirement has come," and other times when he thinks "the time for retirement has already come?" He wishes he could play until he was sixty.
- He knew this might be his last season while preparing for the season during the winter.
- He made his final decision to retire in early September.
- He struggled with injuries from the start of the season (left calf, right shoulder, lower back).
- His biggest reason for retiring was his body not being able to take the grind any more and wearing down.
- He never thought his career would last twenty-seven years when he first started playing professionally.
- He was able to keep going because he wanted to win and was always trying to think of ways of keeping opponents down.
- Over the years, he did feel that catching was hard on the body (although he could not be sure since he never played another position professionally), but never once thought about quitting.
- He figures there is no one in Japan has caught as many pitches as he has. He thinks his bigger and thicker left hand is proof of that.
- He is grateful to the Dragons for giving him the opportunity to be a player/manager.
- He plans to pencil himself into the starting line-up for the last game at Nagoya Dome this season on September 24. His last official game will most likely come on September 26, when Chunichi plays Yokohama at Yokohama. Yokohama is where he started his career.
- He is currently set to return as full-time manager of the Dragons next year.
- He remembers the press conference when he was first introduced to the media. He remembers how happy his parents looked.
- Memorable moment: winning a championship with Yokohama in 1998. Memorable moments with Chunichi include no-hitters by Kenshin Kawakami (August 1, 2002), Masahiro Yamamoto (September 16, 2006), and Daisuke Yamai (June 28, 2013); the combined no-hitter with Yamai and Hitoki Iwase (November 11, 2007); and his walk-off hit against Yakult at Nagoya Dome on September 24, 2011.
[UPDATE 9/24 @ 11:37pm]
Tanishige played in his last game at Nagoya Dome on September 24. He made the starting line-up at catcher and batted eight. He went 1-for-1: 1B7 one RBI. He was replaced by a pinch-runner after his hit in the 2nd inning. Kosuke Fukudome and singer/songwriter Chiharu Matsuyama presented him with flowers. Teammates tossed him into the air five times after the game (he initially turned them down). Source: Daily Sports 9/24/2015, Sponichi 9/24/2015, Sponichi 9/24/2015
[UPDATE 9/27 @ 1:22am]
Tanishige played in the last game of his career on September 26. He made the starting line-up at catcher and batted eighth against the Yokohama Bay Stars at Yokohama Stadium. He grounded out to short in his one at bat and removed himself on defense in the 2nd. His three sons and Daisuke Miura presented him with flowers. Players from both teams tossed him into the air five times after the game. Source: Sponichi 9/26/2015
[UPDATE 9/27 @ 6:23pm]
Tanishige was taken off the active roster on September 27.
[UPDATE 10/2 @ 9:28pm]
The Hiroshima Carp held a mini retirement ceremony for Tanishige before their game at Mazda Stadium on October 2. Coach Takuro Ishii presented Tanishige with flowers.
Source: Nikkan Sports 10/2/2015
- Best Nine: 1998
- Golden Glove: 1998, 2006-2007, 2009, 2011, 2012
- All-Star Games: 1993, 1997-2002, 2005, 2007, 2012-2014
- Nippon Series Outstanding Player: 2004
- Holds record for: most games as a catcher (2,922; as of 9/21), most games (3,019; as of 9/21), most consecutive seasons with at least one hit (twenty-seven, 1989-2015), most consecutive seasons with at least one home run (twenty-seven, 1989-2015)