The closer nicknamed "Daimajin" was overpowering in Japan and U.S.
Elected by the Selection Committee for Players
Tohoku Fukushi University
In 1990, he joined the Yokohama Taiyo Whales as its first draft choice. He turned a reliever in 1991 and was the best relief pitcher for four successive years (1995-98). In 1998 he notched 45 saves and led the team to its first victory in 38 years in the Japan Series. In 2000, he pitched for the Seattle Mariners. He notched 37 saves and won the Rookie of the year. The forkballer was nicknamed "DAIMAJIN" and compiled a combined 381 saves in Japan and U.S.