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Baseball: Daisuke Matsuzaka returning home to Seibu Lions

Daisuke Matsuzaka (Kyodo)

TOKYO (Kyodo) -- Pitcher Daisuke Matsuzaka, who left the Seibu Lions to pitch in the majors 13 years ago, is in line to rejoin the Pacific League club, an official source with knowledge of the matter said Saturday.

The 39-year-old Matsuzaka, who was named Nippon Professional Baseball's comeback player of the year for 2018, pitched in just two games this year for the Chunichi Dragons and was released. The right-hander has a 114-65 record in Japan, with most of those results coming with the Lions, for whom he pitched from 1999 to 2006. He went 56-43 in the major leagues, mostly with the Boston Red Sox.

Matsuzaka returned to Japan in 2015 with the PL's SoftBank Hawks, but appeared in just one game with them over the course of his three-year contract. He joined the Central League's Dragons in 2018, and went 5-4 with a 3.74 ERA in 11 starts.

The PL's rookie of the year in 1999 after a stellar high school career made him a household name in Japan, Matsuzaka was also named the Most Valuable Player in the first two World Baseball Classics, both won by Japan.

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