Former Lotte All-Star Kobayashi closes out career

 
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OSAKA, Nov. 1 (20:00) Kyodo

 
Former All-Star closer Masahide Kobayashi retired Tuesday after
recording 234 career saves in Japanese baseball and the majors
combined.

The 37-year-old Kobayashi will become a coach with the Orix
Buffaloes, who he made just six appearances for without recording a
single save this season.

Kobayashi played two seasons with the Cleveland Indians from
2008 to 2009, saving six games with a 5.10 ERA in 67 appearances. He
closes out his career with 228 saves in Japan -- fourth on the
all-time list -- and a 2.93 ERA.

''It's been a very rewarding, fantastic 13 years,'' Kobayashi
said. ''Up until now, I've thought about baseball only for my
personal gain. It's time to think about baseball for the good of
other people from hereon.''

Kobayashi was the Lotte Marines' No. 1 draft pick in 1999. From
the 2001 season, he had seven straight 20-save seasons, leading the
Pacific League in the category in 2005.

Kobayashi played for the Yomiuri Giants last season upon
returning to the country from Cleveland before landing at Orix.
 


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