Beware of The Monster
Daisuke Matsuzaka's impending arrival has Red Sox Nation in a frenzy, but his fans in Japan will be sad to see him go.
Editor's Note: This story appears in the Dec. 4 edition of ESPN The Magazine.
Daisuke Matsuzaka smiles and a host of cameras flash. It's a lightning storm inside the ballroom of the Takanawa Prince Hotel in Tokyo, where some 200 journalists are gathered on Nov. 1 for Matsuzaka's "posting," the official announcement that his negotiating rights are up for bid. The 26-year-old Seibu Lions righthander, the best pitcher in Japan and the biggest star in all of Japanese professional sports, sits ...
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The Matsuzaka File
26 (Sept. 13, 1980)
No. 1 pick by Seibu Lions ('98)
1999 Pacific League Rookie of the Year
2001 Sawamura Award (top pitcher in Japan)
2006 World Baseball Classic MVP
All with Seibu Lions
• Kurkjian: Posting process needs to be fixed
• Allen: D-Mat signing double-edged sword for Japan
• Neyer: Japanese players ... go west
• Law: Matsuzaka strengthens Sox rotation
• Olney: Boston brilliant with D-Mat deal
• Gammons: Red Sox get D-Mat their way
• Poll: Is he worth the hype?
• Karabell: Matsuzaka's fantasy value
• Gammons: Show Matsuzaka the money
• Allen: Matsuzaka keeps Japan waiting
• Neyer: Red Sox's new math doesn't add up
• Crasnick: Sign Matsuzaka or Zito?
• McAdam: Red Sox can't cry anymore
• Allen: A stunner in Japan
• Red Sox bid $51.1 million
• Crasnick: Respecting "Mr. Matsuzaka"
• Gammons: Boston's investment plan
• Vote: Is Matsuzaka worth it?
• Law: Top 40 free agents
• Kurkjian: How much pressure he'll face
• Bobby Valentine's Matsuzaka experience
• Daisuke strikes a deal
• Breaking down Matsuzaka deal
• Is Daisuke finally the one?
• Matsuzaka headed for Boston
• Interview with Scott Boras
• Is Matsuzaka worth $51.1M?
• Peter Gammons: Red Sox got a bargain
• Terry Francona: No language issues
• Buster Olney: Boston's great offseason
• Tim Kurkjian: Yanks still own AL East
• Keith Law: A big-game pitcher
• SI.com's Jon Heyman
• Dan Patrick and Keith Olbermann