Shigeo Nagashima, manager of Japan’s national baseball team, was diagnosed at a Tokyo hospital Friday as having suffered a stroke the previous day.

“I wouldn’t say his condition is not serious, but it’s not a life-or-death situation either,” Shinichiro Uchiyama, a professor at Tokyo Women’s Medical University, told a news conference.

Doctors said Nagashima underwent CT scans, and had experienced numbness on the right side of his body.

Uchiyama said Nagashima, 68, who is scheduled to travel to Athens for the Olympics in August, will not be undergoing surgery. He will be treated with medication, he said.

Uchiyama said Nagashima is conscious and able to converse.

“Yesterday, he didn’t wake up at the time he normally does,” Nagashima’s son, Kazushige, a former pro baseball player, told the same news conference.

“He was only half-conscious when he was carried away on a stretcher,” the son said. “All we can do as a family is pray that he’ll get better.”

Kazushige said Nagashima asked him what happened to the right part of his body.

Nagashima, popularly known as “Mr. Giants” for his dazzling fielding as a third baseman and enduring charismatic presence, was hospitalized Thursday, two days after speaking at a meeting of a business support group for the Yomiuri Giants.

He played for the team through the 1958-1974 seasons and managed between 1975 and 1980 and from 1993 to 2001.

Yomiuri Giants President Makoto Doi said in a statement: “Our team will do our best to support him. We believe he will fully recover.”

Nagashima guided the national team to victories over South Korea and Taiwan at the Asian Championships in November to secure a spot for Japan in the Olympics.


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