Masakazu Seike (清家 政和)
- Bats Right, Throws Right
- Height 5' 11", Weight 167 lb.
- High School Yanagawa Shogyo High School
Infielder Masakazu Seike spent 9 seasons in Nippon Pro Baseball, mostly as a backup.
Seike was a third-round pick of the Hanshin Tigers in 1977. He went 6 for 11 with a double, 4 runs, RBI and 2 walks in a stellar 8-game stint with the big club as a rookie in 1981 then was 0 for 2 in 1982. He was then dealt to the Seibu Lions for Takeshi Yamakawa. In 1983, the 23-year-old was 0 for 3, then 0 for 2 in 1984. He was 1 for 12 with a walk in 1985 then 8 for 20 in 1986. He was 0 for 1 in the 1986 Japan Series, in which Seibu beat the Hiroshima Carp.
In 1987, Seike played 72 games and hit .224/.256/.263 in 174 plate appearances. He was Seibu's starting shortstop in the 1987 Japan Series, going 2 for 16 with a home run - he had not hit a regular season homer to that point in his career. He replaced Hiromichi Ishige at short, as Ishige had moved to third base. In a career-high 94 games and 205 plate appearances in 1988, the Kitakyushu native produced at a .193/.254/.287 rate with a career-best 12 doubles, 19 RBI and his only regular season triple and home run. He was 0 for 1 in the 1988 Japan Series, backing up at third base (Ishige was back starting at short) and Seibu beat the Chunichi Dragons. Seike was 0 for 3 in the 1989 season, back on the pine. He did not play for the big club in 1990. He moved to the Yakult Swallows next, spending a year in the minors then going 6 for 20 in 1992 to end his career.
Overall, Masakazu Seike batted .222/.269/.281 in 459 plate appearances over 228 games in NPB. He had 41 runs, 36 RBI, 18 doubles, 1 triple, 1 home run, 2 steals (in 5 tries), 24 walks and 72 whiffs.
- Japanbaseballdaily by Gary Garland
- Japanese Wikipedia entry