Japan’s all-time best

The king, Sadaharu Oh, and I at a Meikyukai game at Tokyo Dome. Mr. Oh wore No. 1 and is No. 1 in two of the three separate rankings used to evaluate this overall ranking.

The following list is my estimate — based on my best application of Bill James’ win shares formulas to players active between 1946 and 2019.

It is an amalgamation of three ranks borrowed from the New Bill James Historical Baseball Abstract.

Total Career Value

Career value: Total win shares in NPB and the major leagues (for Japanese players). MLB win shares probably should be weighted more, but they aren’t. Tough. NPB win shares are adjusted to account for the time period they occurred and the degree to which talent appears to be spread out in a given year.

Peak Value

The total value of the most productive five-year period in each player’s career.

Maximum Season Value

This is the average value of the player’s three most valuable seasons.

Although the latter two are related and often overlap, all three are treated equally in the overall ranking which is calculated as the cube root of the product of the three rankings.

The category “HOF” lists the year the player in question was inducted into the Japanese Baseball Hall of Fame. “Players” indicate someone currently on the hall’s players division ballot, while “experts” indicates someone on the current expert’s division ballot.

Top 300.xlsx

jballallen.com's rankings of the top 300 players in NPB history -- includes MLB performance for Japanese players but not imports.
Name RName JLast YearPosHOFOveral RankRank WSRank Peak 5Rank Best 3
Sadaharu Oh王 貞治19801B19941112
Ichiro Suzuki鈴木 一朗2019OF2247
Kazuhisa Inao稲尾 和久1969P199333621
Shigeo Nagashima長嶋 茂雄19743B19884855
Katsuya Nomura野村 克也1980C198953717
Masaichi Kaneda金田 正一1969P198866911
Hiromitsu Ochiai落合 博満19981B201175819
Kazuhiro Yamauchi山内 一弘1970OF2002871310
Hideki Matsui松井 秀喜2002OF2018911616
Takehiko Bessho別所 毅彦1960P19791020154
Isao Harimoto張本 勲1981OF19901141924
Tomoaki Kanemoto金本 知憲2012RF201812101315
Koji Yamamoto山本 浩二1986OF200813121119
Kosuke Fukudome福留 孝介2019RF14131814
Yuki Yanagita柳田 悠岐2019CF1514038
Masayuki Kakefu掛布 雅之19883Bexperts1642266
Kazuo Matsui松井 稼頭央2018SS17152026
Shinnosuke Abe阿部 慎之助2019C18182221
Nobuhiko Matsunaka松中 信彦20151B19391713
Jyuzo Sanada真田 重蔵1956P199020146174
Shigeru Sugishita杉下 茂1961P198521831112
Keishi Suzuki鈴木 啓示1985P200222173728
Takashi Toritani鳥谷 敬2019SS23212732
Michihiro Ogasawara小笠原 道大20153B24252239
Hiromitsu Kadota門田 博光1992OF20062597134
Tetsuto Yamada山田 哲人20192B261501510
Yasumitsu Toyoda豊田 泰光1969SS200627273336
Kazuhiro Kiyohara清原 和博20081B28163952
Hayato Sakamoto坂本 勇人2019SS29343430
Koichi Tabuchi田淵 幸一1984Cexperts30522628
Tuffy Rhodesタッフィー・ローズ2009CFplayers31326623
Atsuya Furuta古田 敦也2007C201632236732
Fumio Fujimura藤村 富美男19583B197433772333
Kihachi Enomoto榎本 喜八19721B201634197842
Hiroyuki Nakajima中島 裕之2019SS35632639
Kazuhiro Wada和田 一浩2015LF36294747
Koji Akiyama秋山 幸二2002OF201437284066
Yoshihiro Maru丸 佳浩2019CF381212822
Ryohei Hasegawa長谷川 良平1963P200139953026
Yutaka Fukumoto福本 豊1988OF2002401454104
Atsunori Inaba稲葉 篤紀2014RFplayers41434345
Yoshio Itoi糸井 嘉男2019RF42643242
Tadahito Iguchi井口 資仁20172B43264870
Hisashi Yamada山田 久志1988P200644314762
Makoto Kozuru小鶴 誠1958OF198045745329
Tetsuharu Kawakami川上 哲治19581B196546554152
Norichika Aoki青木 宣親2019CF47473279
Tokuji Iida飯田 徳治19631B198148385066
Futoshi Nakanishi中西 太19693B1999491012947
Kenji Jojima城島 健司2012Cplayers50604752
Hiromi Matsunaga松永 浩美19973B51465064
Hiroshi Oshita大下 弘1959OF198052654256
Tadashi Sugiura杉浦 忠1970P1995531525121
Norihiro Nakamura中村 紀洋20143Bplayers54416379
Hiroki Kokubo小久保 裕紀20123Bplayers55377084
Masaaki Koyama小山 正明1973P200156308590
Hirokazu Ibata井端 弘和2015SS57766348
Shogo Akiyama秋山 翔吾2019CF581553843
Yoshio Yoshida吉田 義男1969SS199259539060
Masahiko Morino森野 将彦20173B601076642
Hiromichi Ishige石毛 宏典19963B61516399
Taira Fujita藤田 平1984SS62448686
Takeya Nakamura中村 剛也20193B63689060
Shinichi Eto江藤 慎一1976OF201064498095
Hideo Fujimoto藤本 英雄1955P1976651735739
Wally Yonamine与那嶺 要1962OF1994661244473
Masahiro Doi土井 正博1981OF6724134123
Akira Eto江藤 智20093B68676399
Yoshinori Hirose広瀬 叔功1977OF1999695480102
Roberto Petagineペタジーニ20101B702163562
Alex Cabreraカブレラ20121B711058256
Tetsuya Yoneda米田 哲也1977P20007235137102
Tsuyoshi NishiokaTSUYOSHI2018SS731695554
Takuro Ishii石井 忠徳2012SSplayers744893113
Alex Ramirezラミレス2013LFplayers75848375
Michio Nishizawa西沢 道夫1958P 1B197776908175
Minoru Murayama村山 実1972P1993779211254
Tom O'Malleyオマリー19961B782523763
Kenjiro Tamiya田宮 謙次郎1963OF2002791106684
Tatsunori Hara原 辰徳19953B2018805785126
Shigeru Chiba千葉 茂19562B1980811287070
Sachio Kinugasa衣笠 祥雄19873B19968222165184
Shuichi Murata村田 修一20173B838611370
Hideto Asamura浅村 栄斗20192B841537560
Kensuke Tanaka田中 賢介20192B851307870
Kenjiro Nomura野村 謙二郎2005SSplayers86899386
Hideji Kato加藤 英司19871Bexperts8756110117
Atsushi Nagaike長池 徳士1979OFExperts881257281
Noburu Aota青田 昇1959OF200989879095
Giichiro Shiraki白木 義一郎1952P903436335
Takahiro Ikeyama池山 隆寛2002SS918875117
Akinori Iwamura岩村 明憲20143Bplayers921339373
Michiyo Arito有藤 道世19863B9345134155
Yoshitomo Tsutsugo筒香 嘉智2019LF942185776
Yutaka Enatsu江夏 豊1984P9550122155
Choji Murata村田 兆治1990P20059679102126
Tsutomu Wakamatsu若松 勉1989OF20099758104172
Nobuhiro Matsuda松田 宣浩20193B9882118108
Daryl Spencerスペンサー19721B993377045
Kazuyoshi Tatsunami立浪 和義20092B201910033145230
Masaki Saito斎藤 雅樹2001P20161019813784
Robert Roseボッビ・ローズ20002B1021677592
Kenichi Yazawa谷沢 健一19861B10366130142
Tyrone Woodsタイロン・ウッズ20081B1042975379
Randy Bassバース19881Bexperts1053406360
LeRon Leeリー1987OF10611595120
Takeshi Kuwata桑田 武19703B10716811073
Atsushi Kataoka片岡 篤史20063B1081429899
Boomer Wellsブーマー19921B10915810491
Seiya Suzuki鈴木 誠也2019RF1103757852
Akinobu Mayumi真弓 明信1995SS11178125164
Yoshinobu Takahashi高橋 由伸2015RF11271176131
Yukio Tanaka田中 幸雄2007SS113108119131
Naoki Takahashi高橋 直樹1986P114156101110
Takao Kajimoto梶本 隆夫1973P200711585152141
Shoichi Busujima毒島 章一1971OF11675152160
Yu Darvishダルビッシュ 有2011P11713598133
Masayasu Kaneda金田 正泰1957OF118138130113
Kazuhiko Kondo近藤 和彦1973OF119109118160
Atsushi Aramaki荒巻 淳1962P1985120159142102
Shoichi Ono小野 正一1970P121185121104
Hiroyuki Yamazaki山崎 裕之19842B12259191215
Yoshihiko Takahashi高橋 慶彦1992SS123111148152
Kazuo Kageyama蔭山 和夫19593B124237101113
Takumi Otomo大友 工司1960P12532410581
Warren Cromartieクロマティ1990OF12628411287
Suguru Egawa江川 卓1987P127223101123
Kaoru Betto別当 薫1957OF198812824490127
Tomonori Maeda前田 智徳2013LFplayers12972275145
Tatsuhiko Kimata木俣 達彦1982C13069169252
Leon Leeレオン19871B131145157131
Takumi Kuriyama栗山 巧2019CF132104128222
Mutsuo Minagawa皆川 睦男1971P2011133100225136
Masaji Hiramatsu平松 政次1984P201713497240132
Katsuo Osugi大杉 勝男19831B199713562209238
Takahiro Arai新井 貴浩20183B13670176259
Koichi Ogata緒方 孝市2009RF137134128190
Yasunori Oshima大島 康徳1994OF13861250215
Leo Gomezゴメス20023B1393699595
Tsuguhiro Hattori服部 受弘1958C140291107110
Tokuji Kawasaki川崎 徳次1957P OF14117921490
Munenori Kawasaki川﨑 宗則2017SS142174118168
Haruki Nishikawa西川 遥輝2019CF14325598139
Hiromu Matsuoka松岡 弘1985Pexperts144103142242
Masayuki Dobashi土橋 正幸1967P145259134108
Motonobu Tanishige谷繁 元信2015C14640301309
Yutaka Takagi高木 豊19942B147117168190
Takeshi Yamasaki山﨑 武司20131Bplayers14894237168
Ryosuke Kikuchi菊池 涼介20192B149304125105
Osamu Higashio東尾 修1988P201015080315164
Hisayoshi Chono長野 久義2019CF151234128141
Noboru Akiyama秋山 登1967P2004152165165160
Takashi Nishimoto西本 聖1993P153151152190
Daichi Suzuki鈴木 大地2019SS154269121136
Kosuke Tanaka田中 広輔2019SS15543311490
Kinji Shimatani島谷 金二19823B156141152215
Seiichi Uchikawa内川 聖一20191B157106184234
Manabu Kitabeppu北別府 学1994P2012158127184199
George Altmanアルトマン1975OF159231125164
Toshio Naka中 暁生1972OF16091233222
Koji Minoda簑田 浩二1990OF161177168168
Hideo Nomo野茂 英雄1993P2014162122225190
Masaaki Ikenaga池永 正明1970P163407110120
Makoto Matsubara松原 誠19811B16493233252
Masahiro Tanaka田中 将大2013P165341134120
Kazuyoshi Yamamoto山本 一義1975OF166157142252
Akio Saionji西園寺 昭夫19703B167196170172
Hiroo Ishii石井 浩郎20021B168309137136
Takeshi Doigaki土井垣 武1957C169181145222
Jiro Noguchi野口 二郎1953OF170416107131
Katsuya Kakunaka角中 勝也2019LF171280139152
Toru Sugiura杉浦 享1993OF172129161293
Akira Nakamura中村 晃2019LF173348118149
Tadayoshi Kajioka梶岡 忠義1955P17428322099
Takanori Suzuki鈴木尚2008OF175254145168
Masumi Kuwata桑田 真澄2006SPplayers176163203190
Kazuhiko Endo遠藤 一彦1992P177188184193
Katsumi Hirosawa広澤 克実20031B178126187286
Yuichi Honda本多 雄一20182B179202148225
Kyuji Fujikawa藤川 球児2019P180206161204
Yasuo Fujii藤井 康雄20021B181144305156
Steve Ontiverosスティーブ19851B182427148108
Kazuto Yamamoto鶴岡 一人19523B1965183378156117
Hiroji Okajima岡嶋 博治19673B184203178196
Ken Suzuki鈴木 健20073B185176229179
Isao Shibata柴田 勲1981OFexperts18673287346
Kazunori Shinozuka篠塚 利夫19942B187136209267
Akinobu Okada岡田 彰布19952B188137261215
Wladimir Balentienバレンティン2019LF189235225145
Victor Starffinスタルヒン1955PHall of Fame190315209117
Yasuo Yonegawa米川 泰夫1959P191296191139
Daijiro Oishi大石 第二朗19972B192112255279
Yutaka Wada和田 豊20012B193154191273
Gene Bacqueバッキー1969P194423156123
Morimichi Takagi高木 守道19802B200619581267388
Yasushi Tao田尾 安志1991OF196207191215
Yohei Oshima大島 洋平2019CF197213229177
Satoshi Sugiyama杉山 悟1960OF198222176222
Goro Toi遠井 吾郎19771B199171187273
Isami Okamoto岡本 伊三美19632B200265165204
Norihiro Akahoshi赤星 憲広2009CFplayers201289176177
Tomoyuki Sugano菅野 智之2019P202364139177
Takao Katsuragi葛城 隆雄1970OF203170203267
Norihiro Komada駒田 徳広20001B204164203279
Yang Zhong-shou陽 岱鋼2019CF205288184179
Yuya Hasegawa長谷川 勇也2019RF206293176184
Chico Barbonバルボン19652B207325194152
Koichi Hori堀 幸一20092B208118287286
Shigeru Kurihashi栗橋 茂1989OF209189225234
Jose Fernandezフェルナンデス20131B210236156271
Fumio Narita成田 文男1982P211183246222
Junichi Kashiwabara柏原 純一19881B212172184320
Masaru Uno宇野 勝1994SS213123229362
Koichiro Yoshinaga吉永 幸一郎2003C214232184252
Shigeru Kobayashi小林 繁1983P215264178230
Akitoshi Kodama小玉 明利19693B216119265346
Toshikazu Kodama児玉 利一19583B217318161215
John Sipinシピン19802B218266220190
Tony Blancoブランコ20161B219421165160
Tokuzo Harada原田 徳光1958OF220217214240
Matt Murtonマートン2015LF221458168145
Kenta Kurihara栗原 健太20131B222357161199
Masao Morishita森下 整鎮19663B223253214215
Kohei Sugiyama杉山 光平1966OF224246246193
Kiyoshi Hatsushiba初芝 清20053B225184287222
Daisuke Yamashita山下 大輔1987SS226215203271
Shigeya Iijima飯島 滋弥1955OF227277220199
Nobukazu Miyake三宅 伸和19673B228274156286
Dave Robertsロバーツ19731B229414176172
Makoto Sasaki佐々木 誠2000OF230212225264
Yasuaki Taiho大豊 泰昭20021B231219272215
Sadayuki Tokutake徳武 定之19703B232344203184
Tomohiro Nioka二岡 智宏2013SS233238214259
Yoshitomo Tani谷 佳知2015RF234161272302
Zaichi Hayashi林 義一1958P235364203184
Yoshiro Sotokoba外木場 義郎1979P2013236258360147
Sho Nakata中田 翔20191B237256194279
Toshiya Sugiuchi杉内 俊哉2015P238211250271
Saburo Hirai平井 三郎1957SS239285220230
Hiroki Kuroda黒田 博樹2016P240120326373
Junji Nakatani中谷 準志19573B241303209234
Bobby Marcanoマルカーノ19852B242200240320
Akihiro Yano矢野 燿大2010C243204255302
Teruyuki Takakura高倉 照幸1970OF244139310381
Kiyoshi Oishi大石 清1970P245383220195
Seiji Sekiguchi関口 清治1963OF246242240286
Hiromasa Arai新井 宏昌1992OF247116403362
Shigeo Ishii石井 茂雄1979P248226301252
Mitsuhiro Adachi足立 光宏1979Pexperts249143360334
Tsuneo Horiuchi堀内 恒夫1983P2008250166305340
Noburu Inoue井上 登19672B251194246362
Toshiaki Imae今江 敏晃20193B252187352264
Tsutomu Ito伊東 勤2003C201725396427434
Kentaro Imanishi今西 啓介1955P254511194184
Kenji Koike小池 兼司1974SS255287237271
Akiteru Kono河野 旭輝1967SS256205360252
Yutaka Ono大野 豊1998P2013257102396464
Mitsuo Motoi基 満男19842B258114396418
Chusuke Kizuka木塚 忠助1959SS259228214388
Kiyoshi Sugiura杉浦 清1953SS260336187302
Orestes Destradeデストラーデ19951B261581237139
Kimiyasu Kudo工藤 公康2010P201626299535373
Kazumi Takahashi高橋 一三1982P263190373279
Bunjiro Sakamoto坂本 文次郎19613B264395233215
Isamu Fujii藤井 勇1958OF265272294259
Ralph Bryantブライアント1995OF266354257230
Koji Uehara上原 浩治2018P267131410390
Yukio Ozaki尾崎 行雄1973P268507246172
Aarom Baldirisバルディリス20153B269445203238
Luis Lopezロペス20021B270534209193
Kazuya Fukuura福浦 和也20191B271149301482
Takao Sato佐藤 孝夫1963OF272251343252
Motoshi Fujita藤田 元司1964P1996273426315164
Jitsuo Mizutani水谷 実雄19851B274182310396
Toshizo Sakamoto阪本 敏三1980SS275240275346
Shosei Go呉 昌征1957OF1995276316277264
Tatsuro Hirooka広岡 達朗1966SS1992277262265334
Hisashi Iwakuma岩隈 久志2011P278180427309
Tomehiro Kaneda金田 留広1981P279307279279
Kenta Maeda前田 健太2015P280227267396
Chuck Manuelマニエル1981OF281506203238
Makoto Shimada島田 誠1991OF282225255434
Kazuhiko Ishimine石嶺 和彦1996OF283257255381
Daisuke Miura三浦 大輔2016P284132410464
Hatsuhiko Tsuji辻 発彦19992B285195301434
Daisuke Matsuzaka松坂 大輔2019P286193360368
Yasuyuki Kataoka片岡 易之20162B287321265302
Toru Ogawa小川 亨19841B288148384453
Tomio Tashiro田代 富雄19913B289260310320
Akio Saito斉藤 明雄1993P290178343424
Masahiro Yamamoto山本昌2015P291113507468
Michinori Tsubouchi坪内 道典1951OF1992292451209293
Teruo Namiki並木 輝男1968OF293392277259
Kazunori Yamamotoカズ山本1999OF294175415388
Hideyuki Awano阿波野 秀幸2000P295537301177
Yozo Nagabuchi永淵 洋三1979OF296461246255
Hitoshi Tamura多村 仁志2015LF297281460225
Kuo Yuen-chih郭 源治1996P298210352396
Makoto Kaneko金子 誠2014SSplayers299186392402
Toshihisa Nishi仁志 敏久20092B300221343388

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

writing & research on Japanese baseball

css.php