Matsui, Kazuo 松井 稼頭央 (まつい・かずお)
Rakuten Eagles | #7 | OF
Born: 10/22/1975 (age 43)
Height: 177cm
Weight: 85kg
Bats: B
Throws: R
Blood Type: O
Hometown: Osaka
Draft: 1993, 3rd Round
History: PL学園高(甲)-西武-メッツ-ロッキーズ-アストロズ-ロッキーズ-3Aコロラドスプリングス
Roster Changes: removed 06/10/2016, added 08/05/2016

[9/26/2018] Kazuo Matsui to retire at the end of the season

The media learned on September 25 that forty-two-year-old Kazuo Matsui is planning to retire at the end of the season. The Seibu Lions are expected to make some sort of an announcement soon.

Matsui has been limited to twenty-three games this year. He has been traveling with the team since he was taken off the active roster on September 15 to make room for a starting pitcher.

Source: Sanspo 9/26/2018, Nikkan Sports 9/26/2018, Daily Sports 9/26/2018, Sponichi 9/26/2018

[UPDATE @ 11:21am]

The Lions announced that Matsui is planning to retire at the end of the season. He is scheduled to hold a press conference at MetLife Dome on September 27.

Source: Nikkan Sports 9/26/2018, Sponichi 9/26/2018, Sports Hochi 9/26/2018


[11/17/2017] Kazuo Matsui to return to the Seibu Lions

The Seibu Lions announced that Kazuo Matsui will be returning to their organization as a player/technical coach. He was assigned his old uniform number 7. Matsui will wear the Seibu uniform again for the first time since 2003. The media is reporting that the two sides agreed to a one-year contract worth an estimated forty million yen.

Source: Seibu 11/17/2017, Tokyo Sports 11/17/2017, Sponichi 11/17/2017, Sports Hochi 11/17/2017

See also:


[9/23/2017] Kazuo Matsui wants to continue playing in 2018

Forty-one-year-old Kazuo Matsui told reporters on September 22 that he wanted to continue playing next year. He said that he still had the desire to play and that that was the reason why he was still working hard.

Matsui is 16-for-76 with a slash line of .211/.277/.342 in forty-four Ichi-gun games this year. He is currently at Ni-gun. He started at designated hitter and batted third against Yakult on September 22. He went 0-for-5 with five strikeouts.

Source: Nikkan Sports 9/23/2017, Nikkan Sports 9/23/2017

[UPDATE 10/12 @ 11:35pm]

Matsui might be willing to leave the Eagles to keep his career alive.

Source: Nikkan Sports 10/12/2017

[UPDATE 10/13 @ 1:50am]

The Eagles offered Matsui a coaching position, but he turned it down because he wants to keep playing.

Source: Sanspo 10/12/2017

[UPDATE 10/14 @ 1:20am]

Matsui could end up back with his old team, the Seibu Lions.

Source: Tokyo Sports 10/13/2017, Sponichi 10/13/2017

[UPDATE 10/22 @ 10:16pm]

The Eagles are trying to keep Matsui in the organization by offering him a job (staff, front office, coach). The veteran is not ready to retire and will most likely leave the team for playing time.

Source: Daily Sports 10/22/2017, Tokyo Sports 10/22/2017

[UPDATE 10/25 @ 3:48pm]

The media learned on October 24 that Matsui has decided to leave the Eagles to pursue playing time with another team. He has already asked the team for his release. Rakuten is expected to make an official announcement within the next few days.

Source: Sports Hochi 10/25/2017, Nikkan Sports 10/25/2017, Sponichi 10/25/2017, Daily Sports 10/25/2017

[UPDATE 10/28 @ 3:38am]

The Eagles officially announced on October 27 that they were not going to sign Matsui to a contract for the 2018 season. The Lions are interested in the veteran. Sponichi is reporting that they might offer him a oosition as player/coach.

Source: Rakuten 10/27/2017, Nikkan Sports 10/27/2017, Sponichi 10/27/2017

[UPDATE 11/5 @ 11:38am]

The Lions might offer Matsui his old uniform number 7.

Source: Sponichi 11/5/2017

[UPDATE 11/16 @ 11:13pm]

The Lions could make an announcement about Matsui on November 17.

Source: Nikkan Sports 11/16/2017, Daily Sports 11/16/2017


Kazuo Matsui: Did You Know

Matsui blasted the 200th home run of his career on April 22 and became the 100th player in NPB history to reach the milestone. At forty-one years and five months, he joined George Altman (forty-two years and three months) as the only players to hit their 200th after turning forty. The previous high for a Japanese player was Atsuya Furuta at thirty-eight years and ten months.

Matsui also joined Hiromi Matsunaga as the only switch-hitters in NPB history to hit 200 or more home runs.

Source: Sports Hochi 4/23/2017, Sponichi 4/23/2017, Nikkan Sports 4/23/2017


[9/13/2016] Kazuo Matsui not ready to retire

Forty-year-old Kazuo Matsui believes he can still play and is not ready to retire. He would like to continue playing for the Rakuten Eagles. He is currently in the final year of a two-year deal. The Eagles are expected to sit down with Matsui after the season to discuss the possibility of a contract for 2017.

Source: Nikkan Sports 9/13/2016, Sanspo 9/13/2016


[4/26/2016] Kazuo Matsui could be used as a reliever

The Rakuten Eagles could look to Kazuo Matsui as an emergency reliever.

Four of Rakuten’s last six games have gone into extra innings. The bullpen is overworked and Matsui could end up pitching if they run out of arms. The veteran is prepared to do what he can to help the team.

Masataka Nashida started thinking about using Matsui as an emergency reliever during an extra inning game on April 23 against the Seibu Lions at Seibu Prince Dome. Eight pitchers were available and he called on the eighth pitcher in the twelfth inning. Nashida told Matsui he might have to take the mound if the eighth pitcher was unable to make it out of the inning.

Source: Sponichi 4/26/2016


[4/13/2016] Kazuo Matsui returns to the starting line-up

Kazuo Matsui hurt his right knee when he ran into Zelous Wheeler while playing defense during a game against Lotte at QVC Marine on March 29. He returned to the starting line-up on April 13 for the first time since the injury.

Source: Daily Sports 4/13/2016

Matsui’s home run in the fourth inning was his first of the season.