Hideki Matsui was the first player ever to play 10 seasons at the top levels of baseball in both Japan and America, and according to reports he’s finally ready to retire.
Word of Matsui’s impending retirement was first reported by 47 News in Japan, and later confirmed by ESPN sources.
The 38-year-old spent part of last season with the Tampa Bay Rays, spending time as the team’s designated hitter before finally being waived and released midseason. He’s perhaps best remembered in America for leading the Yankees to their 2009 World Series championship, winning the World Series MVP.
In his ten seasons in MLB — also spending a year with the Angels — Matsui hit 175 home runs, finishing his career with a .822 OPS. In Japan Matsui played for the Yomiuri Giants, hitting 332 home runs, including 50 in his final season in 2002. He’s still noted as one of the best players in the history of Nippon Professional Baseball.
Photo via Flickr/Keith Allison