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Daisuke Matsuzaka donates $1M

Boston Red Sox pitcher Daisuke Matsuzaka donated $1 million to help victims of the earthquake and tsunami in his Japanese homeland, the team announced Friday.

"Our efforts on the field are dedicated to all who are suffering from this catastrophe," Matsuzaka said in a videotaped message released by the Red Sox earlier this month. "We are in this together, so we must overcome tragedy together."

Fellow Japanese Red Sox pitchers Hideki Okajima, Junichi Tazawa and Itsuki Shoda also made donations. In total, the Red Sox said they raised $1.3 million for the relief effort, which includes Matsuzaka's sum.

"Red Sox fans share a common language with the people of Japan through our shared love of baseball," Red Sox chairman Tom Werner said, via a news release. "We are grateful for the many gifts Japan has given to our team and to baseball here in the United States. We are proud of our veteran pitcher Daisuke Matsuzaka who, through this extraordinary donation also shows he is a charitable champion."

Earlier this month, Matsuzaka, Jason Varitek and other Red Sox staffers stood at the gates of City of Palms Park before a spring training game collecting donations from fans.

A native of Tokyo, Matsuzaka is making his donation to the Japanese Red Cross through the official team charity of the Boston Red Sox, the Red Sox Foundation. The donations will go to support the Japanese Red Cross Society's relief efforts.