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Hiroyuki Nakajima is back in the U.S. and the Diamondbacks are after him

Nov 20, 2012, 9:50 AM EDT

Hiroyuki_Nakajima AP

Yankees fans will remember Hiroyuki Nakajima. He’s the Japanese infielder who, last year, was posted by the Seibu Lions and whose negotiation rights were won by the Yankees.  The team and player couldn’t come to an agreement, however, so Nakajima returned to the NPB and Seibu. He had a good year too, hitting .311/.382/.451 with 13 home runs, 74 RBI and seven stolen bases.

But now he’s an unrestricted free agent and he’s looking to come to Major League Baseball once again. Patrick Newman reports:


Last year when the Yankees were taking to him, the go-to comp was Tsuyoshi Nishioka. Which isn’t the most inspiring thing in the world. But man, there is no way this guy can be that bad. No one can, right?

  1. Old Gator - Nov 20, 2012 at 11:19 AM

    If Gamera the Brave is out there, I wonder if this guy is related to the immortal Haruo Nakajima, the “guy in the Godzilla suit.” I don’t know if he was much of an infielder, but he could fill out a kaiju costume and take his lumps. After surviving heat prostration and dehydration in the early, unventilated Godzilla suit, and having passed out several times on the set while wearing it, Nakajima thought that he was in hog heaven when handed the much lighter and slightly ventilated Rodan suit – only to have a cable snap during a flying scene and breaking some ribs falling onto one of Eiji Tsurabaya’s miniature city sets.

    If I’m not mistaken, I think Nakajimi finished up his career tending the executive bowling alley in the basement of the Toho Studios headquarters. That would be the Japanese equivalent of going from batting cleanup for the Borg to being the bench coach for the Feesh.

    • Gamera the Brave - Nov 20, 2012 at 5:51 PM

      Haruo Nakajima (if sources are correct) is Japanese for “f-ing rockstar in rubber suit”.
      That sh!t will get you thoroughly laid in Japan.
      Rather less so in the States, as I walk around various Bay Area cities in my rubber turtle suit…

  2. uwsptke - Nov 20, 2012 at 12:33 PM

    They have to pray that his skills more closely resemble Aoki than Nishioka.

  3. badintent - Nov 20, 2012 at 11:54 PM

    2 cali rolls, 1 spicy tuna roll, 2 Dynamite rolls, 3 yakitora sticks and a bigass bowl of yakisoba noodles with shrimp ! Order up.

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