Category Archives: History

articles about Japanese baseball history

WBC Jeopardy

Today I’m going to run you through a simulated game of “Jeopardy,” although you’ll have to forgive me if I get parts of it wrong. It used to be one of my favorite American TV shows, but I have only seen a handful of episodes since moving to Japan in 1984, including those in which a friend and former Daily Yomiuri coworker played and won a considerable sum of cash.

I suspect some of this will be new to some of you. I hope you enjoy it, although there’s no cash involved and no home version as a consolation prize.


WBC controversies

  • An umpire who cost Japan a chance to bring in MLB closer Akira Otsuka with a late lead in the first game of the 2006 Anaheim quarterfinal round by overturning the correct safe call on an appeal play in favor of the USA.
  • An umpire who cost Mexico a home run in the final game of the 2006 Anaheim quarterfinal round against the USA, when he ruled a ball hit off the foul pole to be a ground rule double.
  • A country that was eliminated from a playoff to advance to the quarterfinals in 2017 after MLB announced it would play in the tie-breaker playoff.
  • A country whose players union threatened to boycott the first three WBCs.
Continue reading WBC Jeopardy

NPB news: Jan. 25, 2023

On Tuesday night we learned that Hiromitsu Kadota, whose 567 career home runs are third most in Japanese pro baseball, was found dead in his home on Monday at the age of 74.

Kadota was famous not just for his home run total but for the shape of his career. Prior to his age 31 season, he hit one homer per 21.8 at-bats. He then missed most of the 1979 season with an Achilles tendon tear, before having the comeback to end all comebacks, with one home run per 12.7 at-bats through his final season at the age of 44.

Continue reading NPB news: Jan. 25, 2023