Red Sox pitcher Daisuke Matsuzaka has donated $1 million to the Japanese Red Cross Society through the Red Sox Foundation for relief efforts in Japan as the country recovers from the earthquake and subsequent tsunami that devastated the northeast coast on March 11.
“Our efforts on the field are dedicated to all who are suffering from this catastrophe. We are in this together, so we must overcome tragedy together.” Matsuzaka said in a video message released by the Sox earlier this month.
The Red Sox Foundation is the official team charity of the Boston Red Sox, and 100 percent of Matsuzaka’s donation will go to the Japanese Red Cross Society to fund ongoing relief efforts. So far, the Red Sox Foundation has raised more than $1.3 million from fans, Red Sox players (including Matsuzaka’s contribution), team partners and sponsors, and a $50,000 donation from the Foundation itself.
“Red Sox fans share a common language with the people of Japan through our shared love of baseball,” Red Sox Chairman Tom Werner said in an official release.
“We are grateful for the many gifts Japan has given to our team and to baseball here in the United States,” Werner added. ”We are proud of our veteran pitcher Daisuke Matsuzaka who, through this extraordinary donation also shows he is a charitable champion.”
Matsuzaka’s teammates and fellow countrymen Hideki Okajima, Junichi Tazawa and Itsuki Shoda have also made charitable donations through the Red Sox Foundation. Earlier this month, the four Red Sox pitchers joined team captain Jason Varitek and other members of the Red Sox staff to collect fan donations at the gates of two spring training games at City of Palms Park, where they collected more than $4,600 in fan donations.
“Our hearts and prayers go out to our friends in Japan as they struggle amid the devastation caused by this natural disaster,” Werner said. ”We are moved by the courage and resolve they are showing in the face of such enormous challenges and we are pleased to join Daisuke, Hideki, Junichi, Itsuki, our other players and partners, and the many generous fans of Red Sox Nation in offering our support at this time of great need.”
Fans can continue to help the victims of the disaster in Japan by making a donation to the Red Sox Foundation. To make an online donation, log on to www.redsoxfoundation.org. Checks should be made out to “Red Sox Foundation/Japan Relief” and sent to:
Red Sox Foundation
4 Yawkey Way
Boston, MA 02215.
100 percent of donations received will support the Red Cross relief efforts in Japan.