Posted at 6:26 a.m., Friday, June 1, 2007
Former major leaguer Cromartie to try pro wrestling
Associated PressTOKYO -- Former major league baseball player Warren Cromartie is coming back to Japan to take a shot at professional wrestling.
Cromartie was a fan favorite in Japan when he played for the Yomiuri Giants between 1984 and 1990. He led the Central League in batting in 1989 with a .378 average and was also named league Most Valuable Player that year.
Now aged 53, Cromartie will step into the ring at Saitama Super Arena on June 17th in a pro wrestling event called Hustle Aid.
"He's really excited about returning to Japan and is training very hard," said Hustle Aid media relations director Chiyo Kishimoto. "He's taking it very seriously."
Cromartie, whose nickname is Crow, was quite a showman in Japan and often led the Yomiuri faithful with cheers of "Banzai" from his position in the outfield.
He played in the major leagues for 10 seasons, nine with the Montreal Expos.
After leaving Japan, Cromartie managed the Japan Samurai Bears in the Golden Baseball League in 2005.
Hustle would not confirm who Cromartie will face in the ring, but media reports in Japan have speculated that it could be either Tiger Jeet Singh or Abdullah the Butcher.