Tag: Hideki Matsui
News and notes on Hideki Matsui being a future managerial candidate for the Yomiuri Giants.
Sanspo posted the following interview with Giants' chairman Tsuneo Watanabe:
[Hideki] Matsui retired.
Well, there is his age. He is younger than me though. Probably half my age. That is why he should return to Kyojin as soon as possible, to be after [Tatsunori] Hara-kun, we will of course have him do some coaching first, but he will then become a major manager for us. I think that is what everyone wants. Baseball fans... I think it is something everyone wants.
At his old team, Kyojin?
I think that should be the case. Would it not be strange for him to go to some other team? Are we are opening our mouths here and waiting for him.
So after Hara?
That would be the order. And if Matsui-kun can do it, then Yoshinobu Takahashi-kun or other options become available. After Hara-kun, there really is no one else to step in right away. Hara-kun will still manage the team, but having Matsui-kun come in after would be best. At least that is our feeling. It is about what Matsui-kun thinks. I will meet him after he returns [to Japan]. I will meet him and ask him.
Would he get some coaching experience first?
Of course. He could be a head coach or something. He was a hitter after all. Pitchers, he needs to learn what to do, see how things go. Like how to use pitchers.
Source: Sanspo 1/8/2013
According to report by Nikkan Sports, Watanabe may not have been entirely convinced that Matsui was the best candidate to become the next manager of the Giants after Hara (in August last year he said during a radio interview that he would pick Ichiro Suzuki over Matsui). It may have taken a conversation with Hara to change his mind (Hara may have told Watanabe that Matsui would do just fine if he had time to learn the ropes). Source: Nikkan Sports 1/8/2013
Junichi Tazawa will be getting a new uniform number: from sixty-three to thirty-six. The Red Sox reportedly asked him if there was a number he preferred. Said Tazawa, "I asked for the number thirty-six. I do not have a real connection to it, but I wanted a number with the six in it because my birthday is June 6." Source: Sponichi 1/4/2013
A Yu Darvish museum is scheduled to open in Kitano, Hyogo later this year in November. Source: Daily Sports 1/4/2013
A Hideki Matsui bat is heading to the Hall of Fame in Cooperstown. From ESPN's Andrew Marchand:
In that first game at Yankee Stadium, Matsui delivered, becoming the first Yankee ever to nail a grand slam in his Bronx debut.
... Now, the bat that Matsui used for that memorable moment will be in Cooperstown, according to Hall of Fame President Jeff Idelson's Twitter account. Idelson even provided a picture.
According to a report by Sanspo, Hideki Matsui is currently thinking about the following three things for his career after pro baseball:
Going to college - Before turning pro, he apparently thought about going to college, but put that option on the hold when he was drafted in the 1st round by the Yomiuri Giants. He could apply for colleges in either Japan or New York.
Making the US his main residence - He can speak English without too many difficulities and can read US newspapers. He likes living in New York and is thinking about applying for a Green card.
Becoming a high school manager - He feels managing high school ball could be the most fulfilling job for him. Returning to his Alma mater Seiryo High School is a possibility.
Source: Sanspo 1/1/2013
UPDATE @ 10:56pm - The New York Yankees may be thinking of giving Matsui a chance to manage their Rookie League team, perhaps as early as 2014. The Yomiuri Giants are also considering the possibility of naming Matsui a manager at some point in the future. Gaining experience in the US would only help improve his chances at managing in Japan. Source: Sponichi 1/1/2013, Sponichi 1/1/2013, Sponichi 1/1/2013
Hideki Matsui updates from December 29:
- Matsui's wife is due to give birth in some time in March. The two are expecting a boy. Source: Sanspo 12/29/2012, Daily Sports 12/29/2012
- Matsui could be presented with the People's Honor Award. Only two pro yakyu players have won the award: Sadaharu Oh (1977) and Sachio Kinugasa (1987). Source: Sanspo 12/29/2012, Sponichi 12/29/2012
- The Yomiuri Giants are thinking about holding some sort of retirement ceremony for Matsui. Another possibility is a ceremony during the World Baseball Classic. Source: Sanspo 12/29/2012
- The New York Yankees could be thinking about signing Matsui to a one-day contract next year. Some time during spring training is a possibility. Source: Sponichi 12/29/2012
- Matsui is scheduled to meet with Yomiuri chairman Tsuneo Watanabe after he returns to Japan. Source: Daily Sports 12/29/2012
- Matsui could make his debut as a TV commentator during the World Baseball Classic. Source: Sponichi 12/29/2012
Hideki Matsui news and notes from December 28:
Comments from various people:
Shigeo Nagashima -
I think he placed more important on maintaining the image fans have of "Hideki Matsui" instead of continuing to play the game he loves. The last two to three years, he struggled with his knees problems every day before facing pitchers. It must have been very difficult for him. The 2000 Nippon Series, the 2009 World Series... I see in my eyes, a big home run hitter that helped teams win games. Personally, I can still hear the sounds of the two of us swinging the bat every day. Up until now, I tried to hold back on comments with praise, but now that he is taking the uniform off, I want to say that he was one of the best home run hitters of the modern era.
Sadaharu Oh -
Since high school, he carried Japanese baseball on his shoulders and received a lot of attention as a big left-handed hitter. I think he fought through a tremendous amount of pressure each day.
I wanted to see him continue his career in Japan, but in taking on the challenge of playing for the well-known Yankees, his efforts had a great impact on the development of Japanese baseball. His 2009 World Series MVP was something we baseball players were especially proud of.
It may have been a difficult journey, but it was one that he selected. I am sure he does not have any regrets.
A very nice job.
Kojiro Shiraishi, Yomiuri Giants' owner -
I think there are many things [Matsui] will think about regarding what he does next. In speaking for the organization, we would like to do what we can help Matsui realize his wishes. If he wants to return to the Yomiuri organization, if he wants to put on the Yomiuri uniform at some point in the future to manage the team, we would be grateful and would welcome him."
Source: Nikkan Sports 12/28/2012
Isozaki Kubota, Mizuno bat-maker -
I first met Matsui in December 1992 when he visited the Mizuno Technics factory with his Seiryo High School manager Tomoshige Yamashita.
I still remember distinctly, details from that day. He was very big and calm. He was a young student, but he seemed to have a very strong center. When I saw his hands, the skin was thick and the joints were hard. [His hands] told me that he practiced very hard.
It has been twenty years since then. He left many records, but remained sincere with his feelings for baseball. He was always very respectful toward the equipment makers. I am extremely grateful to have met someone that used the bat so well.
Source: Daily Sports 12/28/2012
Ryozo Kato, NPB commissioner -
More than feeling sad, I feel what a waste. [Matsui] was a great home run hitter to come out of Japanese baseball. He was also very clutch. I think he was able to make it in New York and was accepted by teammates because of his virtue and personality.
Source: Nikkan Sports 12/28/2012
Ichiro Suzuki -
There were many times we just spoke for hours. [Matsui] has a different way of thinking about things that really interests me. In playing for the Yankees, I realize how important his accomplishment were, how difficult things must have been. He is the one player I knew about from junior high. That he is taking his uniform off now is very sad.
Source: Sanspo 12/28/2012
Kazuhiro Kiyohara -
[Matsui] was a productive clean-up hitter for the Giants and won a World Series MVP with the Yankees. To be missed by all these people after retiring. I think he had a great career and I want to applaud him. When I played baseball, I liked to take batting practice next to him. I did not see any hitters that could surpass what Matsui and I had during batting practice. There were no power hitters better than Matsui.
Source: Nikkan Sports 12/28/2012
Hiromitsu Ochiai -
In thinking about the Matsui I played with about twenty years ago, I remember his power. He was still rough around the edges, but his power made up for that. He played ten years in Japan and then ten years in Japan. I think you could say that he did all that he could do.
Source: Nikkan Sports 12/28/2012
Yoshihide Suga, Chief Cabinet Secretary
[Matsui] was an amazing player that gave the people of Japan hope and joy. I am surprised and saddened [by the news].
Fumio Kishida, Minister Foreign Affairs
As a pro yakyu fan myself, this greatly saddens me. [Matsui] gave baseball fans in Japan and the US courage, his achievements are really great.
Nobuteru Ishihara, Environment Minister
It is really too bad. I was really moved when he won the MVP during the World Series.
Source: Sanspo 12/28/2012
- About eighty members of the media were at Matsui's retirement press conference. There were also over ten TV cameras.
- Matsui did not want to use the word "retirement" (引退) during his press conference. He got some laughs when he said it was because he still planned to play sandlot baseball.
- Matsui has not made any decisions about what he plans to do next.
- Matsui retired because he was not able to take advantage of the many opportunities he got.
- Matsui decided not to continue his career in Japan because he felt too many fans would expect to see the player from ten years ago. He was not confident he could pull that off.
- The condition of Matsui's knees were also an issue.
- Matsui is planning to spend the New Year in New York.
- Matsui's wife is reportedly pregnant. Could explain why he plans to spend the New Year in the US.
Links to US news sites:
- Matsui, Star in Two Continents, Is Retiring (New York Times, 12/27/2012)
- Former Yankees slugger, and 2009 World Series MVP, Hideki Matsui to retire (New York Daily News, 12/27/2012)
- Reactions to Hideki Matsui's retirement from Hal Steinbrenner, Brian Cashman and Derek Jeter (New York Daily News, 12/27/2012)
- Former Yankees slugger Matsui retires (New York Post, 12/27/2012)
- Hideki Matsui, 2009 World Series MVP with Yankees, announces retirement (The Star-Ledger, 12/27/2012)
- Ex-Yankee slugger Hideki Matsui retires (Newsday, 12/27/2012)
- Godzilla says goodbye: Matsui calls it a career (MLB.com, 12/27/2012)
- Hideki Matsui, 'Godzilla' in two countries, calls it a career (USA Today, 12/27/2012)
- Photos: Japan's Favorite Son Hideki Matsui Retires From Baseball (Wall Street Journal, 12/27/2012)
According to at least two reports, Hideki Matsui is planning to announce his retirement during a press conference in New York on Thursday (US time).
According to a report by Sanspo, Hideki Matsui might be thinking about retiring based on the following observations:
- he ma have cut back on his workouts and may no longer be training as hard as he used to.
- he usually returns to Japan at the end of the year and stays until about mid-February. He has yet to set a timetable for his return this year and has not reserved his usual training facilities.
- he no longer seems to have that strong desire to continue playing.
- he started cleaning his storage unit.
- has said that retirement as an option is not 0%.
Source: Sanspo 12/27/2012
Kyuji Fujikawa's family will be moving to the US, but they may start things off by living in Los Angeles. Source: Sanspo 12/9/2012
Fujikawa stopped by the team store in front of Wrigley Field after his press conference on the 7th and purchased about forty items totaling about one thousand US dollars. Source: Daily Sports 12/9/2012
The Chicago Cubs and New York Mets are among teams interested in Hisanori Takahashi. Source: Nikkan Sports 12/9/2012
No new updates on Hideki Matsui. Some teams appear to be interested in him, but it seems like he is looking into teams that might be able to offer him an invite to spring training. Source: Nikkan Sports 12/9/2012
Koji Uehara signed a one-year deal with the Boston Red Sox. From ESPN's Gordon Edes:
The Boston Red Sox and free-agent reliever Koji Uehara struck an agreement on a one-year, $4.25 million deal Thursday, according to a major league source.
The deal is pending a physical.
Uehara also apparently turned down a one-year deal from the Milwaukee Brewers. Source: Daily Sports 12/7/2012
The Arizona Diamondacks may no longer be interested in Hiroyuki Nakajima because they signed Eric Chavez. From AZCentral.com's Nick Piecoro:
... That is, aside from infielder Hiroyuki Nakajima, who seems unlikely now that Eric Chavez is on board.
... The Chavez signing means the Diamondbacks are “less likely” to sign Hiroyuki Nakajima, Towers said.
There are apparently no teams interested in signing Kosuke Fukudome to an MLB contract. A minor league contract might be possible, but that may not be something he wants. Source: Sanspo 12/8/2012
Fukudome spoke to reporters on Friday and said that he needed a little more time to decide. Source: Nikkan Sports 12/7/2012
The Chunichi Dragons may have offered Fukudome a two-year deal worth 200 million yen sometime earlier this month. Source: Nikkan Sports 12/7/2012
Teenager that caught and auctioned off Hideki Matsui's 500th home run for 25,000 dollars decides to donate 2,500 to charity. From the Orlando Sentinel's Martin E. Comas:
A Windermere teenager who stretched out over a Major League stadium seat to snag a milestone home-run ball has turned the catch into a win for both himself and an Orlando charity.
"I wanted to do something that will help people rather than spend it all on myself," Michael Schultes, 16, said Monday, a day after he handed a check for $2,500 to the nonprofit Community Food & Outreach Center.
The money was part of the $25,000 the West Orange High School junior made after selling a baseball he caught in the stands at a 2011 game between the Detroit Tigers and the Oakland Athletics. It was the 500th home run hit by then-A's star Hideki Matsui as a pro.
The Philadelphia Phillies may have interest in Ichiro Suzuki. From CSNPhilly.com's Jim Salisbury:
Ichiro Suzuki is another outfielder worth watching. In fact, sources say there has been communication between his camp and Phillies officials. It’s unclear if the Phils have actual interest or whether Suzuki’s side reached out to the Phils.
If Ichiro returns to the New York Yankees, it may be in a platoon role in right. Source: Sanspo 12/6/2012
The Houston Astros see Hideki Matsui as a possible DH candidate. From the SFGate.com:
Porter confirmed Houston is considering Hideki Matsui for the new DH role, which the Astros didn't need in the NL.
Kyuji Fujikawa arrived in Chicago on the 4th. The Cubs have reportedly set aside the number eleven for Fujikawa. Source: Sanspo 12/6/2012
A number of teams, including the Padres, are reportedly interested in Daisuke Matsuzaka. Source: Sanspo 12/6/2012
Texas Rangers' manager Ron Washington called Koji Uehara on the 4th and spoke to him for about ten minutes. Twelve teams, including the Orioles, Brewers, and Red Sox, are reportedly interested in Uehara. Source: Sponichi 12/6/2012, Nikkan Sports 12/6/2012
Rangers are also interested in Yoshinori Tateyama. From ESPN's Richard Durrett:
Daniels said he's talked with Yoshi Tateyama's agent and that the club has some interest in bringing him back. He's also checked in with Koji Uehara, who continues to see what kind of market is available for him.