Jeremy Guthrie Reconnects with Long Lost Family in Japan
By David Hill
The annual All-Star trek to Japan to play a series against the Japanese League All-Stars certainly has a lot of added perks for the players and the sport. Those players who choose to take the trip get to enjoy Japan, and potentially get an idea as to what it is like to face the next top player to come stateside. Likewise, in Japan, it is a chance for these players to face off against major league talent, allowing them to see how they would stack up should one be considering such a move.
For Jeremy Guthrie, this journey to Japan had an added perk – it allowed him to connect with a side of his family that had been out of touch for over forty years. There had been attempts to mail one another, but nothing came of them and, thirty years ago, both sides just gave up. However, for Guthrie, once he realized he was heading to Japan, it was a chance to attempt to reconnect.
Enlisting the aid of a friend in Japan, Jeremy Guthrie was able to do just that. That friend was able to track down Guthrie’s third cousin once removed, asking numerous questions to ensure the link was really there. Finally, on Wednesday, Guthrie met this cousin, Akio Toshikiyo, and established that they were, in fact, related.
Guthrie’s rediscovered branch of the family tree was in attendance during his outing on Saturday. While Guthrie lost the game 4-0, as the American side was the victim of a combined no-hitter, that loss may have mattered even less than it normally would have for an exhibition game. Despite losing the game, Guthrie had gained a new family.
With the holidays fast approaching, thoughts go out to family gatherings and reconnecting with friends and family that one has not seen for some time. Everyone wants to get together, relive the good times and enjoy those family traditions that have been passed down from time immemorial. It seems as though Jeremy Guthrie picked the right time to reconnect with that branch of his family.
Jeremy Guthrie has always considered himself to be a Japanese-American. Now, he will get to know that Japanese side a little bit better.