Hideki Matsui stood in his sparkling new white No. 55 Athletics jersey offering quite a contrast to the dark skies and pouring rain around him.
With a huge crowd gathered under a covered area at Papago Park, Godzilla took repeated slow-motion swings, then tossed a baseball into his glove over and over again—all part of a Japanese commercial shoot for a company that makes heavy machinery.
Matsui arrived in the desert late Friday after being delayed and spent Saturday working on non-baseball activities, though he was eager to get started at spring training with the team he long admired as a kid.
Oakland’s first full-squad workout is Monday, but the team’s new designated hitter planned to visit the clubhouse Sunday to say hello when position players were due to report.