When Yokohama senryokugai Shigeo Yanagida was let go for the second time during his career, he knew it was time to retire. After graduating from high school, he decided to play in the Industrial League with Duplo. He had a hard time fitting in and quit when he was nineteen. He joined the Nomo Baseball Club in 2003 after spending a little over a year away from baseball. He was drafted by Chunichi in 2005 and then released in 2013. He got offers from a number of teams and picked Yokohama because they were the first to approach him. He was happy with his decision because for the first time during his career, he felt like he belonged. When the Bay Stars let him go this year, they offered him a job in the organization, which he accepted.
Shinji Iwata struggled with right shoulder problems the last few years. His shoulder felt better this year, but he still failed to make the active roster. When the Chunichi Dragons informed him in the September that he was not a part of the team’s plans in 2017, he decided to retire. He initially turned down Chunichi’s plans for a retirement game/ceremony, but was later convinced to have one. He is now working in the Dragons’ front office.0 Comments
Thirty-six-year-old Yudai Kawai and and twenty-nine-year -old Shinji Iwata held a press conference at Nagoya Dome today to announce that this will be their last years. The two will make their final appearances during the last two homes games of the season on September 24 and 25.
Yudai joined the Chunichi organization as their fourth round pick during the 2004 draft. His registered name was originally Kawai Susumu. He changed it to Kawai Yudai in 2009 and then Yudai in 2012. He set a franchise record by starting the 2009 season with an eleven-game winning streak. He recorded twenty-eight wins and thirty-eight losses in ninety-nine games. He won an MVP of the Month award in June 2009 and made it to the All-Star Games in 2009.
Iwata was selected by Chunichi in the fifth round of the 2008 draft. He led the Western League (Ni-gun) in wins and ERA in 2010. Motonobu Tanishige once said he could not catch his forkball, aka the “no spin fork” and the “magical fork.” He won nine and lost fifteen in forty-eight games.0 Comments