Baseball: Former MLB pitcher Yoshii to manage Marines

Masato Yoshii, who pitched in MLB with the New York Mets, Colorado Rockies and Montreal Expos, will manage the Lotte Marines next season, the Pacific League club announced Friday.

The 57-year-old Yoshii, who had been serving as the Marines' pitching coordinator, replaces another former major leaguer, Tadahito Iguchi, who announced his resignation Sunday.

"Very simply, I was taken back by this," Yoshii said in a statement released by the team. "I want to increase the players' performance and strength as human beings."

"The bottom line is winning, and the goal is to be standing on the big stage in October."

Yoshii, whose pitching career stretched from 1985 to 2007 and who spent five seasons in MLB, has served as a coach for the PL's Nippon Ham Fighters and SoftBank Hawks.

With the Fighters, Yoshii worked with two-way star Shohei Ohtani. With Lotte, he has played a role in the careful handling of 20-year-old phenomenon Roki Sasaki, who this year became the youngest pitcher to throw a perfect game.

© Kyodo News