Tsuyoshi Shimoyanagi

From BR Bullpen

Tsuyoshi Shimoyanagi (下柳 剛)

BR register page

Biographical Information[edit]

Tsuyoshi Shimoyanagi had spent most of his career as a left-handed reliever (though not a LOOGY), for the Daiei Hawks and Nippon Ham Fighters, before joining the Hanshin Tigers in 2003. Hanshin began using Shimoyanagi full-time as a starter at age 35 (he had been making more frequent starts with Nippon Ham); he was 10-5 with a 3.73 ERA that year and helped lead the team to their first Japan Series since 1985. That year Shimoyanagi became Scott Boras's first Japanese client. When Major League Baseball teams showed little interest, Shimoyanagi returned to Hanshin. In 2005 in Japanese Baseball he was dominant as the Tigers' ace, going 15-3 with a 2.99 ERA. He tied for the Central League lead in victories and would have been second in ERA had he made the qualifiers; at 37 he had his best season ever. He became the oldest pitcher in Nippon Pro Baseball to lead the league in wins.

Shimoyanagi missed a portion of the 1995 season due to a car accident. Two years later he broke Ichiro Suzuki's NPB record of 216 straight plate appearances without a strikeout.

Shimoyanagi was 10-8 with a 4.11 ERA in 2007.

Overall Shimoyanagi is 103-80 with 22 saves in 549 games (167 starts) in 17 years in Nippon Pro Baseball. A 4-time All-Star, he led his league twice in appearances before becoming a starter.

Shimoyanagi's website