Kenta Maeda is a baseball player who is in a class of his own. The Japanese pitcher plays in the Major League Baseball (MLB) for the Los Angeles Dodgers. Before making the move, he played in his home country for the Hiroshima Toyo Carp of the Nippon Professional Baseball (NPB) where he has not only achieved a lot but has also set a good number of records. Since joining the MLB in 2016, he has become an important part of the Dodgers team.
Kenta Maeda’s Biography
Kenta Maeda was born on April 11, 1988, in Tadaoka, Osaka, Japan. Inasmuch as there is nothing much on how he was raised or his family, what has dominated his life and story is baseball which he started playing since he was a child.
By the time he got to high school, Kenta Maeda was already an excellent player. He played for the PL Gakuen High School which is popular in the annual Summer Koshien tournament. It was from there that he got drafted by the Hiroshima Toyo Carp in the NPB Draft of 2006.
Before getting the call to play in the top Japanese league, the pitcher spent the 2007 season playing for the for the Carp’s secondary team. In 2008, he got the call to play in the main team. He would record his best year in the league in 2010 when he made his first NPB All-Star before going on to make four more. He also won his first Best Nine Award (before adding two more), his first of five Golden Gloves Awards, and first of two Eiji Sawamura Awards.
In addition to all these, he when he took home the Sawamura Award, he became the youngest pitcher to make the pitching Triple Crown in the history of Japanese baseball.
In 2015, the Carp decided to take advantage of the posting system and make Kenta Maeda available for the Major League Baseball. He got signed by the Los Angeles Dodgers who offered him a 25 million deal that would keep him with the team for the next 8 years.
More so, the deal would also see him have incentives of up to $10 million each year, with everything adding up to over $90 million. On its part, the Hiroshima Carp got to make $20 million from the deal as the posting fee.
Maeda made his MLB debut in a game that saw the Dodgers getting the better side of the San Diego Padres at Petco Park. By the end of his first year, came after Corey Seager and Trea Turner to end third in the National League Rookie of the Year Award voting. He also had a good 2017 season, although it did not go as great as it could have gone after the Dodgers lost the 2017 World Series to the Houston Astros in seven games.
Apart from playing in the NPB and the MLB, the pitcher has also played for the Japanese Baseball team. He was part of the team that got the Bronze medal at the 2015 WBSC Premier12 international baseball championship.
Wife and Family
Inasmuch as not so much is known about how he was raised or his family, it is known that Kenta Maeda is a married man. The Dodgers man got married to Saho Narushima in 2012. At the time, Kenta was still in the NPB while Narushima was working as a TV personality.
According to reports, the couple first got to meet through a mutual friend who introduced them sometime in 2010 and soon afterward, they began dating. By 2011, they got engaged and the next year, they became man and wife after tying the knot in Hiroshima.
Apart from being a TV announcer, Saho Narushima also loves cooking which is evident by what she shares on her social media and in 2015, she published a cookbook.
The family had lived in Japan before finally moving to the United States. The couple has two children, a daughter and a son who was born in 2018.
Height, Weight, Measurements
A good-looking man, Kenta Maeda also has a good height and body build. In numbers, he stands at a massive height of 6 feet 1 inch (185 cm) and he has a body weight of 175 lb (79 kg). The general body measurements of the right-handed pitcher have not been provided, but it is obvious that he has good measurements.