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[9/30/2015] Hanshin Tigers: Kentaro Sekimoto announces his decision to retire

by on Sep.30, 2015 @ 8:07 pm, under NPB

Kentaro Sekimoto held a press conference at the team office in Nishinomiya, Hyogo earlier today to formally announce his decision to retire at the end of the year.

A few notes from various sources:

  • He felt he had a pretty good career, considering his abilities.
  • He started thinking this might be his last year after he got hurt for a second time this year.
  • He got into baseball as a kid because he loved it. He did not want to stick around until he could not hit anymore and started to hate baseball. He wanted to quit on his own terms.
  • There are a lot of things he wishes could have been, particularly winning a Nippon Series.
  • He was confident when he first joined the team and thought he would easily make it. He remembers being surprised (and humbled) when it took him three years to make it to Ichi-gun.
  • He feels he was able to have a long career because he learned how to adjust his expectations and goals.
  • He did not particularly enjoy with responsibilities that came with being the team's top bat off the bench. There were times he wished the team would win before his turn came around.
  • He was so focused on his at bats that he would not hear the cheers until after he stepped on first base on a hit.
  • Memorable moment: striking out against Daisuke Miura in his first trip to the plate.
  • A retirement ceremony will take place after a game against Hiroshima on October 4.

Source: official announcement, official announcement (retirement ceremony), Daily Sports 9/30/2015, Daily Sports 9/30/2015, Sponichi 9/30/2015, Nikkan Sports 9/30/2015

[UPDATE 10/5 @ 9:41am]

Sekimoto played in his last game on October 4. He entered the game against Hiroshima as a pinch-hitter in the bottom of the 8th and grounded out to the pitcher. He remained in the game as the third base man in the top of the 9th. The Tigers held a retirement ceremony for the veteran after the game. Takahiro Arai, Takashi Toritani, and his two sons presented him with flowers. Teammates tossed him into the air three times.

Source: Nikkan Sports 10/4/2015, Daily Sports 10/4/2015, Daily Sports 10/4/2015Sponichi 10/4/2015

Career Stats

Year Team G PA AB R H 2B 3B HR TB RBI SB CS SH SF BB IBB HBP SO DP AVG OBP SLG OPS
2000 Hanshin 2 5 5 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 0 .000 .000 .000 .000
2002 Hanshin 71 216 193 22 49 12 2 5 80 11 1 1 6 0 12 0 5 51 4 .254 .314 .415 .729
2003 Hanshin 36 74 67 13 18 4 0 4 34 12 2 0 0 1 6 0 0 15 4 .269 .324 .507 .832
2004 Hanshin 110 413 354 60 112 13 1 5 142 41 4 1 2 3 51 0 3 74 6 .316 .404 .401 .805
2005 Hanshin 97 266 229 37 68 13 1 0 83 24 1 1 11 2 23 2 1 46 4 .297 .361 .362 .723
2006 Hanshin 132 439 356 52 107 19 2 9 157 33 0 1 33 2 42 0 6 76 8 .301 .382 .441 .823
2007 Hanshin 131 433 358 38 87 12 1 7 122 25 0 0 29 2 39 6 5 67 10 .243 .324 .341 .665
2008 Hanshin 136 521 430 57 128 25 2 8 181 52 2 1 38 5 42 0 6 47 10 .298 .364 .421 .785
2009 Hanshin 113 462 377 45 102 18 2 3 133 44 3 4 34 2 36 0 13 56 7 .271 .353 .353 .706
2010 Hanshin 79 98 78 12 20 5 1 3 36 12 1 0 3 0 15 0 2 24 2 .256 .389 .462 .851
2011 Hanshin 100 255 224 15 59 7 0 2 72 16 0 0 0 0 28 1 3 55 9 .263 .353 .321 .674
2012 Hanshin 91 124 99 9 21 1 0 1 25 12 0 0 5 0 17 0 3 23 0 .212 .345 .253 .598
2013 Hanshin 56 55 43 4 12 3 0 0 15 5 1 0 2 0 8 1 2 10 1 .279 .415 .349 .764
2014 Hanshin 63 66 50 3 13 4 0 1 20 15 0 0 1 1 13 1 1 16 3 .260 .415 .400 .815
  1217 3427 2863 367 796 136 12 48 1100 302 15 9 164 18 332 11 50 562 68 .278 .361 .384 .745