Mitsujiro Sakai

From BR Bullpen

Mitsujiro Sakai (酒井光次郎)

  • Bats Left, Throws Left
  • Height 5' 8", Weight 158 lb.

Mitsujiro Sakai has been a professional baseball player, coach and scout.

Sakai tossed 80 1/3 consecutive scoreless innings during his college days. He was drafted by the Nippon Ham Fighters in the first round in 1989. As a rookie, Sakai had his best year, going 10-10 with a 3.46 ERA and 149 hits in 171 2/3 innings. He tied for the most shutouts in the Pacific League (3) and was 7th in ERA.

In 1991, the southpaw fell to 6-12, 3.71. He had a 4-9, 4.34 record in 1992 and was 2-4 with a save and a 4.87 in 1993. A full-time reliever in 1994, he was 1-0 with a 6.23 ERA. He did not pitch for Nippon Ham the next year and had a 0-1, 2.89 record in 7 outings in 1996. Moving to the Hanshin Tigers in 1997, he gave up one run in two innings. Overall, he was 23-36 with a 4.07 ERA in 171 games in Nippon Pro Baseball.

Sakai then became the pitching coach for the Taiwan national team. He worked for them in the 1999 Asian Championship, 1999 Intercontinental Cup, 2000 Haarlem Baseball Week, 2001 Asian Championship, 2001 Baseball World Cup, 2002 Asian Games, 2002 Intercontinental Cup, 2003 World Port Tournament, 2003 Asian Championship and 2004 Olympics.

From 2005 until April 2007, Sakai was pitching coach for the Uni-President Lions. In 2008, he became a scout for the Yokohama BayStars.