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Early Japanese Baseball.

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  • #31

    Photos taken at Kusanagi Stadium in Shizuoka the day that the legendary Eiji Sawamura pitched against the mighty All American team led by Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig. Although the All Japan team lost 1-0 on a 7th inning home run by Gehrig, the game would go down as the most important baseball contest in Japanese baseball history. Sawamura was a mere 17 year old boy at the time, and yet he held the Americans in check for the entire game. The high point of Sawamura's performance was when he struck out Hall of Famers Charlie Gehringer, Ruth, Gehrig and Jimmy Foxx in succession. For this feat, he would be forever enshrined as Japan's greatest.- 1934
    Last edited by JACKIE42; 03-18-2005, 04:42 PM.


    • #32

      These very large cards, published in December 1933, were given to purchasers of the January 1934 issue of Yakyukai (Baseball World). During this era, the Big Six University baseball league was the top league in Japan, as professional baseball had not yet begun in that country. These large portraits of Big Six University stars are printed on somewhat thin cardboard stock and are blank backed. This near set includes players Fuma, Miura and Wakahara-Waseda U., Katsukawa, Miyake and Ogawa-Keio U., Kajiwara-Tokyo U., Matsui-Meiji U. and Yamashiro-Rikkio U.


      • #33

        The immediate postwar period included some very lean times for much of the Japanese populace. On occasion, baseball stars, who were not particularly well paid at the time, received very much needed items for their families as rewards for stellar play. Frequently, these rewards consisted of food. Kozuru is shown here accepting a large fish from a kimono clad presenter in front of a full house of enthusiastic fans. 1948


        • #34

          1949 SF Seals Japan Tour -Lefty O'Doul w/Sumo Yokozuna Maedayama & Sotaro Suzuki.
          Last edited by JACKIE42; 03-18-2005, 05:00 PM.


          • #35

            The photos used for this set are the standard "stock shots" that the San Francisco Seals sent to Japan prior to the Tour. We have seen these photos often in magazines, and occasionally in other bromide sets. But this is the first time we've encountered cards from this particular set. Players include Elmer Singleton (only Japanese Seals Tour card), Roy Partee, Jack Brewer, Con Dempsey, Mickey Rocco, Gene Brocker and a player identified only as "coach," who is Del Young. 1949
            Last edited by JACKIE42; 03-18-2005, 05:16 PM.


            • #36

              Tetsuharu Kawakami (HOF)

              Known as the God of Batting, Kawakami was the greatest Japanese hitter of his generation. His greatest season came in 1951, after a meeting with Joe DiMaggio about batting. He used the Yankee Clipper's advice, which enabled him to bat .377 while striking out only six times. In 1956, Kawakami hit .364 during the Brooklyn Dodgers Japan Tour. He won three MVP awards and five batting championships. After retirement as an active player, he became Japan's all time greatest manager, leading the Yomiuri Giants to 9 consecutive Japan series titles.
              Last edited by JACKIE42; 03-18-2005, 05:22 PM.


              • #37
                Japanese born Korean pitcher Masaichi Kaneda amassed 400 wins and 298 losses over his 20 year career--the only Japan League pitcher to ever win 400 games and only the third in the world to do so (behind Cy Young and Walter Johnson). He also holds the Japan League record with 4490 strikeouts. After playing for the weak Kokutetsu Swallows for 15 years, he finished his career with the Yomiuri Giants, helping them to win five consecutive Japan Series championships.

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                • #38

                  Six members of the pitching staff that faced the San Francisco Seals in 1949 are depicted on this card in their All Japan Tour uniforms. Foremost among these players is Victor Starffin, the Russian immigrant who pitched against Babe Ruth & Co. during the 1934 Japan Tour and was later the first Japanese pitcher to win 300 games. Also shown are HOFers Hideo Fujimoto, who is the all time ERA leader, and Hiroshi Nakao. Also pictured is Tokuji Kawasaki.
                  Last edited by JACKIE42; 03-19-2005, 05:06 AM.


                  • #39

                    Victor Starffin- 1948


                    • #40

                      The 1949 Giants won the pennant by a whopping 16 games! Included on this card are HOFers Hideo Fujimoto (all time career ERA leader), Takehiko Bessho (300 game winner) and Hiroshi Nakao. Others are Tokuji Kawasaki and Fukuzo Tada. The other card depicts HOFer and Orions pitching ace Atsushi Aramaki and is a rookie card.
                      Last edited by JACKIE42; 03-19-2005, 08:53 AM.


                      • #41

                        Victor Starffin in his All Japan uniform, pitching against the San Francisco Seals in late 1949.
                        Last edited by JACKIE42; 03-19-2005, 10:01 AM.


                        • #42

                          Makoto Kozuru (HOF) & Kikuji Hirayama

                          Kozuru is the first Japanese player to hit 50 HR in a season, and he is also the holder of the single season RBI record. Hirayama was a Giants outfielder from 1937 to 1949.
                          Last edited by JACKIE42; 03-19-2005, 10:07 AM.


                          • #43

                            1922 US All Star Tour of Japan Shipboard B&W Photo

                            Most of the players who participated in this Japan Tour are pictured, including Casey Stengel, Herb Pennock and George Kelly.
                            Last edited by JACKIE42; 03-19-2005, 10:13 AM.


                            • #44

                              Yale University was one of several US college teams to Tour Japan during the 1930s. By far, the best known member of the Yale touring party was baseball coach Smokey Joe Wood, who is in the upper left side- 1935
                              Last edited by JACKIE42; 03-19-2005, 10:19 AM.


                              • #45

                                One card shows HOFer Fumio Fujimura in his All Japan uniform taking a lead off first base in a game against the San Francisco Seals with Jim Moran holding him on. The other three cards show Fujimura batting, Takehiko Bessho (HOF) in a close-up portrait, and Noboru Aota in a fielding postion. 1950
                                Last edited by JACKIE42; 03-19-2005, 05:06 PM.


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