The Japanese government decided to give Hideki Matsui the National Honorary Award. Now he has been to Tokyo to attend the ceremony of this award. Yesterday I watched the TV program about his achievement in MLB.
As I wrote in the entry “Goodbye My Good Old Yankees,” I really love the Yankees in the 1990s. They were the best baseball team that I ever have seen.
All members of the team were tough physically and mentally and devoted to the win of the team. They knew and really did what each of them should do. Shortly, they were just professional. At that time, Paul O’Neill was the symbol of the Yankees. He couldn’t hit thirty home runs in a year, but he was a real clutch hitter.
In the 2000s, the Yankees had changed. In 2001, Paul O’Neill was retired, and after then the Yankees hadn’t won the world champion. In 2004, A Rod was traded to the Yankees, and he hit over fifty home runs in 2007, but the Yankees even didn’t win the divisional title.
Matsui joined the Yankees in 2003. The fans of the Yankees supported him, because he played like Paul O’Neill. He was tough physically and mentally and devoted to the win of the team, too. He also was a real clutch hitter.
In 2009, the Yankees won the world champion, and Matsui got MVP of the World Series. Although he did a great job in the World Series, he was traded to Angels after the season.
I was really impressed that all of audience and the Yankees welcomed him at Angels’ first game in the Yankee stadium in the next season. I remember that Tino Martinez also welcomed in the Yankee stadium after he was traded to Cardinals in 2002. Fans loved Matsui and Martinez from the heart. On the contrary A Rod was always booed in the franchises where he used to belong to.
In the TV program about Matsui, Joe Torre said, “He is trustworthy,” and Derek Jeter said, “He is the Yankee.”