Japanese shortstop Hiroyuki Nakajima finally realized his dream of playing for a Major League Baseball team after he opted to become a free agent and signed with the Oakland A's. Nakajima comes to the MLB from the Seibu Lions, where he was an aggressive hitter who hit for power and had speed. He holds the bat like a Shinkendo sword.
The news will break the hearts of many in Japan, where he was adored by female and gay male baseball fans for his good looks. Women groped Nakajima so often that he had to wear a cup at press conferences. Nakajima is also known for having something of a temper and saying strange things in public, most recently that Oakland A's General Manager Billy Beane was "extremely cool and sexy."
Oakland is one of the least-valuable teams in the MLB, with the league's lowest payroll. Co-owner Lew Wolff is notoriously tight-fisted and runs his team on a shoestring budget. So it's a good thing that Beane, whose life story was made into the movie Moneyball, is a master at crunching the numbers to find the best players for the least money.