Yu Darvish: Nippon Professional Baseball’s Acclaimed Best Pitcher
In baseball, there are only two ways on how a team would outscore its opponent: either through a solid defense that does not let batters move through bases or a strong offense that guarantees scoring.
While going for the latter may only requires a single player every time, that is, the hitter, an almost impenetrable defense may require more than just a single player, primarily headed by the pitcher.
What makes a strong defensive pitcher? One that throws a ball so hard, the opposing batter either find it hard to make a hit at the ball thrown at him or, better yet, not make a hit at all.
In Japan, no other name perhaps embodies the icon as the league’s greatest pitcher than the half-Iranian, half-Japanese professional baseball player, Yu Darvish.
Unlike other baseball players who may not have realized their passion towards the sport early in life, Yu knew his love towards baseball as early as elementary. As a player for the Habikino Boys back as a 2nd-grader, Darvish is credited for helping bring his team to the quarter-finals of the national tournament and placing third in the international tournament.
Committed to pursuing his interest in the sport for high school, Darvish chose to attend the reputable school for baseball players in northern Sendai, Tohoku High School. The very same school that produced prominent NPB players, Kazuhiro Sasaki and Takashi Saito.
With a knack for throwing balls, Yu Darvish has the making of a great pitcher, a trait that was corroborated by the fact that the still budding baseball player earned the position as Tohoku High’s ace pitcher.
(Born and raised from the land of the rising sun, see Yu Darvish’s Japan national team baseball jersey here at Boriz Jersey!)
Thanks partly to his prolific throwing skills, Tohoku High School’s baseball team has had four straight appearances in national tournaments, twice in junior and another two in his senior year.
However, despite his accomplishments that are known mostly to his peers, Yu’s pitching skills was not highlighted until he made a no-hitter record against Kumamoto Technical High School during 76th National High School Baseball Invitational Tournament. Darvish was already at his senior year in high school at the time.
While Darvish’s stellar throwing skills alone was not sufficient for his team to get to championship, his performance at that time was something the league considers as one of the best, if not the best ever.
As of 2004, Yu Darvish was considered as among high school baseball players’ best pitcher.
With a building reputation that is getting attention not just across Japan but overseas as well, Yu was highly-scouted by a number of Major League teams.
But even before Darvish decided to fly for another country and play for a foreign league in 2012, Yu had been a player for the Hokkaido Nippon-Ham Fighters in Japan in 2005 until 2011.
In the present, Yu Darvish remains an active member of the Texas Rangers in the Major League Baseball.
(Interested in getting a baseball jersey patterned after Yu Darvish’s uniform back with Japan national team? Get one for your size here at Boriz Jersey!)