In a mere 151 at bats, Munenori Kawasaki became a cult hero in Toronto for his quirky interviews, funny dance moves and timely hitting. Wednesday, the Blue Jays recalled Jose Reyes after his stint on the disabled list and he’ll start against the Rays this afternoon in Tampa.
It means Kawasaki’s time North of the Border is over, for now, as the 32-year-old Japanese native was optioned to Triple-A Buffalo. Kawasaki left Toronto in classic fashion. When asked if he had a parting message for the Blue Jays fans, he didn’t wait for a translator and said this as reported by the National Post:
“I am now hungry.” And he laughed.
Kawasaki later added these remarks in his native Japanese via the Post:
“Well, it’s not as if I’ve died. I’m still a baseball player. It’s just that tomorrow the field will be different. But I’m still around, and I’m here to help the team when they need it. And it’s been a terrific experience, and I really appreciate everybody, and I love everybody.”
He will be missed, especially across the Internet. Where else but the ‘net can a .220-hitting middle infielder become the fan’s most favorite player?
Since he’s gone (for now) enjoy a couple of Kawasaki’s greatest hits:
Previously: Alison Brie Has Jumped on the Blue Jays Bandwagon
Previously: Munenori Kawasaki Busts a Move to Celebrate Blue Jays 11th Straight Win [GIF]
Previously: Munenori Kawasaki Says “Now I Am Canuck,” Starts to Sing “O Canada” [Video]