YOKOHAMA – The Yokohama DeNA BayStars on Friday announced the appointment of former Yomiuri Giants batting coach Kiyoshi Nakahata as their first manager under the ownership of DeNA Co.
Nakahata took the job that was about to be filled by former Seibu Lions pitcher Kimiyasu Kudo, whose talks with general manager Shigeru Takada broke down earlier this month over the team’s plans for 2012.
“I’ve always wanted to pay my debt of gratitude to baseball by managing,” Nakahata said. “The position of manager is the most challenging in the game. I’m just shaking out of excitement.”
Nakahata spent all of his 14-year playing career through 1989 with the Giants, hitting .290 with 171 homers and 621 RBIs.
At the 2004 Summer Olympics in Athens, he guided Japan to a bronze-medal finish as acting manager in place of Shigeo Nagashima, who was unable to travel to the Greek capital after suffering a stroke.