May spent four seasons in Japan, two each with the Hanshin Tigers and the Yomiuri Giants. May spent four years pitching in Japan. In 2001 he had his best season with 12 wins and a 2.95 ERA, and finished third in MVP balloting. Royals' General Manager Allard Baird, on a scouting trip in September 2001, was impressed by May's performance and signed him to a 1-year contract.
May struggled in 2002, but the Royals re-signed him for 2003. May responded by going 10-8 with a 3.77 ERA and leading the team in wins, ERA, innings pitched, strikeouts, complete games and games started.
Darrel May now coaches high school baseball at St. Andrew's School in Austin, Texas.