On Friday, Shingo Takatsu became the third closer to be elected to the Japanese Baseball Hall of Fame, following Tsunemi Tsuda and Kazuhiro Sasaki. Takatsu was, for a time, Japan’s career saves leader, and is now second with 286 behind future Hall of Famer Hitoki Iwase’s 407.
Takatsu’s support has been slowly building over the years, unlike Sasaki, is third all-time and who shot in with relative ease. I mentioned Tsuda, but his selection was a sentimental one, owing more to his tragic death at the age of 32 than the quality of his career.
Continue reading Saves in Japan
It’s time for this year’s Japanese Baseball Hall of Fame Players division ballot, and in a few weeks we’ll know who my colleagues and I have elected.
As an immigrant in Japan, I’m fairly sensitive to how imports are treated, and want to see them all get their due respect for the contributions they made to the quality of Japan’s game. As many old players will remind us, it is Japan’s game–but it wouldn’t be as good without these guys who leave their homeland in pursuit of careers abroad and made this game better. Saying they don’t belong is like saying the competition is not worthy of belonging to.
Continue reading No snubs at this inn