Dunking on an All Star Baseball Player


Those of you who don’t follow baseball may not know Shigetoshi Hasegawa, a retired relief pitcher who achieved the status of All Star in 2003 when he was playing for the Mariners. Even those of you who know him from baseball probably didn’t know that he is also a best-selling author, a Japanese television personality, and an investor in both stock and real estate.

Through personal connections in the Japanese community in Seattle, I was introduced to Mr. Hasegawa last Friday at his office in Irvine. I had a chance to chat with him for two hours. Lucky, I guess.

Speaking to him, it was most interesting to realize that he views his baseball career, while extremely successful, as the beginning steps to his career. I had somewhat expected that retired professional athletes viewed their athletic career as their glory days, but Mr. Hasegawa proved me wrong.

You could tell that he was clearly excited about his future. He spoke excitedly of how his success in baseball opened up opportunities for him to meet almost anybody he wants to.

He reads a lot of books. He loves Warren Buffet. He can’t keep his eyes off of the financials on companies, and gets really excited when talking about business opportunities surrounding athletic stadiums.

The highlight of my visit to his office was hanging out with him in the back room of his office, with athletic equipment and a netted pitching area (three stories high). I was dunking a basketball with him on an 8 ft hoop at one point, and at another, was chipping a golf ball back and forth with him.

I made a new friend, yay. Moral of the story: if you have an opportunity to meet someone successful, take it.


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