SI: Who's your favorite American ballplayer? Igawa: I have a tremendous respect for all big leaguers. I do not have a particular favorite.
SI: How about a personal hero? Igawa: The goalkeeper for Belgium's national soccer team.
SI: And your favorite historic figure? Igawa: Mitsukuni Tokugawa, a feudal ruler known for his political influence in the early Edo Period.
SI: Tokugawa was a gourmand who claimed to be one of the first Japanese to eat ramen. What's the most exotic food in your fridge? Igawa: Water.
SI: What has been the greatest embarrassment in your life? Igawa: I've lost my wallet four times. I got it back every single time.
SI: What do you like most about New York City? Igawa: The energy. People are filled with pride.
SI: And dislike? Igawa: No manners in driving. Lots of horns.
SI: What did you spend your first paycheck on? Igawa: In Japan, I bought candy. In the U.S., I left tips at the St. Regis.
SI: What kind of hitters give you the most trouble? Igawa: Fast-running singles hitters. They make me throw a lot of pitches.
SI: What kind do you most like to face? Igawa: Free-swinging power hitters.
SI: What impresses you most about the American game? Igawa: The greatness of your baseball tradition. I'd like to learn the culture itself.
SI: What's the worst thing that has ever been written about you? Igawa: Ask the Japanese media.
SI: Your favorite film actor? Igawa: Ken Watanabe of The Last Samurai and Letters from Iwo Jima.
SI: Do you have a secret ambition? Igawa: That's secret.
SI: What is the question are you most asked at parties? Igawa: "When did you start playing baseball?"
SI: Your favorite book? Igawa: The Chrysanthemum and the Bat, Robert Whiting's book about Japanese baseball.
SI: What's the coolest part of your job? Igawa: Pitching complete games.
SI: And your motto? Igawa: Quest.