Hideki Matsui: Japanese ambassador extraordinaire

Robert Whiting wrote about the remarkable equalizing power of athletes such as Matsui, Ichiro, and Matsuzaka in the FCCJ.

A choice selection from the article:

Then there was also the fact that every year during spring training, Matsui took the Yankees-beat writers out to dinner, perhaps the only Yankee in the history of the franchise to do such a thing. And at the end of the first such dinner, he handed out gifts to each of the correspondents, including items from his personal collection of adult videos. New York writers can be merciless, especially to newcomers who do not live up to their hype. But when Matsui, hailed as the Babe Ruth from Japan, struggled in the early going, the New York press was less vitriolic than one might have expected. Perhaps it was the porn effect.

Another enjoyable read by Robert Whiting even if he does refer to Yomiuri as the “Tokyo Giants”. Head on over and read the rest.

About Christopher Pellegrini

Christopher is a budding sabermetrician and long-time supporter of Tokyo's more lovable team, the Swallows. He has publicly volunteered, several times, that he plans to buy the team at some point in the future. When he finally runs the joint, it is likely that he will fine any player who swings at the first pitch or sac bunts (unless it's a pitcher, of course). Follow him on Twitter: @chrispellegrini

  • Garrett DeOrio

    Whiting does have the irritating habit of calling Yomiuri the “Tokyo Giants” as do a few other Anglophone writers writing largely for an overseas audience. I think it’s to let people know where the team’s from or it’s kind of like “Hideki Matsui” as opposed to “Matsui Hideki” – giving people a team name in a format they’re used to, e.g. city + nickname.

    To be fair, there have been times during Whiting’s long baseball writing career when Yomiuri have worn “Tokyo” jerseys.

    We all know who the real Tokyo are, though.