Hideki Matsui was born on June 12, 1974.

Matsui was a very successful outfielder and designated hitter for Yomiuri Giants, where he played from 1993-2002. During his stint in the Nippon Professional Baseball, Matsui won three MVPs and three Japan Series titles.

He gained the attention of the American media during his first trip to the Japan Series, due to the 1994–95 Major League Baseball strike. Media outlets were covering the Series, which was referred in Sports Illustrated as "the" Fall Classic.

In December 2002, Matsui signed a contract with the New York Yankees, where he quickly became a fan favorite, retaining his nickname "Godzilla."

In the 2009 World Series, Matsui helped the Yankees defeat the defending champion Philadelphia Phillies, making history as the first full-time designated hitter to win the MVP award. He hit .615 (8 for 13) with three home runs and eight RBI.

Check out more famous birthday sports history in Throwback on ThePostGame.

Story continues below