The Nippon Ham Fighters announced today that thirty-seven-year-old Yuya Ishii will retire after the season. They also posted the following statement from Ishii:
I am grateful for the opportunity to be a professional baseball player for fourteen years. I learned about mental strength and perseverance through tough practices while playing for the Chunichi Dragons, under people like Hiromitsu Ochiai, Shigekazu Mori, and others.
After the Bay Stars, I became a members of the Fighters. I was impressed by the warm fans. Their cheers became my strength. I am grateful to Hideki Kuriyama because even in difficult jams, he had faith in me and kept playing me. I was lucky to have a lot of great people around me and I was happy to be a member of the Fighters.
Thank you for the fourteen years.