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2006 Hall of Famers Elected
The Selection Committee for Players has elected Hiromitsu Kadota, Morimichi Takagi and Hisashi Yamada, and the Special Selection Committee has elected Hiromori Kawashima and Yasumitsu Toyoda respectively into the Baseball Hall of Fame.

"KADOTA, Hiromitsu"

Born in Yamaguchi Prefecture on February 26, 1948.
Graduating from Tenri High School, he played for four years for a non-pro team in Okayama (1966-69). In 1971, his 2nd year at the Nankai Hawks, he batted third and achieved a splendid record:.300 BA, 31 HR, and 120 RBI (1st in the P.L.) Though the powerful hitter was sidelined with a severed Achilles tendon in 1979, he made a comeback in 1980 with 41 HR and in the following year he was a co-leader in home runs with 44. He was the solo leader in HR in 1983 with 40. His best year was 1988 when he appeared in all of the games batting .311 and led the P.L. in RBI (125) and HR (44). This was the best performance for a player aged 40 or more, and he deservedly won the MVP and the Shoriki Award. He also played for the Orix BlueWave (1989-90) and the Daiei Hawks (1991-92).

His career record: 23 seasons (outfielder, DH), 2,571 games, 8,868 AB, 2,566 H, 1,678 RBI, 567 HR (the 3rd in career record, following Oh and Nomura), and .289 BA. He has the P.L. record in most career BB (1,273), most season bases-loaded HR (4; 1983) and most BB in a game (5; 1988), and led in OBA in 1981, ’87, and ’88. He appeared 14 times in the All-Star Games and 7 times in the Best Nine and 8 times in the Top Ten in BA. He throws and bats left.

"TAKAGI, Morimichi"

Born in Nagoya on July 17, 1941.

The excellent second baseman at Gifu Commercial High School, distinguished for its record in the classic tournaments at Koshien Stadium, proved to be a triple-threat player even in pro baseball. Though he did not have that flamboyance catering to the spectators at large, his exquisitely polished fielding at second base and reliable batting was highly appreciated. Ever since he joined the Chunichi Dragons in 1960, he was famous for his impeccable defense with his backhand toss at the keystone.

He retired in 1980 and coached the team and its reserves for six years. After a few years as a commentator, he took the helm of the Chunichi Dragons in 1992, but had to quit the job early in the season of 1995.
His career record as a player: 21 seasons, 2,282 games, 8,367 AB, 2,274 H, 813 RBI, 236 HR, .272 BA. He led the C.L. in SB in 1963, ’65 and ’73. His memorable feat, 4 consecutive HR spanning 3 games in 1977, is still the Japan’s record. He appeared 4 times in the All-Star Games. He was 6 times in the Top Ten of BA and 7 times in the Best Nine (The most as second baseman in the 2-league era). He also won the golden glove award three times.
He throws and bats right.

"YAMADA, Hisashi"

Born in Noshiro City in Akita Prefecture on July 29, 1948.
After graduating from Noshiro High School, he pitched for a non-pro team in Iwate Prefecture for a few years. In 1969 he joined the Hankyu Braves as the first choice of the draft. In 1970 he notched 10 wins and ever since the formidable submarine pitcher was the mainstay of the then dominant Braves, as was proved by his 10 or more wins for 17 consecutive years and winning MVP for 3 consecutive years (1976,’77,’78). Also included in his splendid pitching in the 70s are: best WP in 1971,’76,’78,’79, best ER in 1971,’77, most wins in 1972,’76 (26 W),’79. He also pitched in the annual opener for 12 consecutive years, and pitched 200 innings or more 13 times including 8 consecutive seasons.

He retired in 1988 and coached the team for three years (1994-96). After coaching the Chunichi Dragons for three years (1999-2001), he managed the same team for two years (2002-03).

His career record as a player: 20 seasons, 654 games, 284 W, 166 L, 3,865 IP, 2,058 SO, 3.18 ERA. He was 14 times in the Top Ten of ERA, 5 times in the Best Nine, won the Golden Glove 5 times and appeared 13 times in the All-Star Games. He throws and bats right.

His career record as a manager: 2 seasons, 260 games, 128 W, 127 L, 5 ties with .502 WP.

"KAWASHIMA, Hiromori"

Born in Fukushima Prefecture on February 27, 1922.
Graduating from the faculty of law at Chuo University in 1942, he entered the Ministry of Home Affairs. After 1967, he successively held various posts, culminating in the Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary of the Tanaka Cabinet in 1973. On retirement, he became president of the Railway Construction Public Corporation in 1979. In 1984, he became the 4th president of the Central League and was in office for 14 years. In 1998, he succeeded to Ichiro Yoshikuni as the 10th Commissioner and served for two terms until 2004.
As early as in 1988, he took the initiative in revising the Japan-U.S Baseball Agreement. He tried to strengthen the ties between the NPB and the MLB and in the March of 2000 he succeeded in having the opening games of the MLB held in Japan. He had been keen on establishing a long-awaited cooperative relationship between pro baseball and amateur baseball, as was witnessed by his attendance at the opening ceremony of the National Invitational High School Baseball Tournament in 2003. He also helped hold a symposium, “Beyond the dream,” in which pro players and high school players participated. His signing of “A memorandum on the selection of rookies,” exchanged between the NPB and the Japan High School Baseball Federation in 2004, has greatly helped accelerate the thaw in the long feud between pro baseball and amateur baseball in Japan.

"TOYODA, Yasumitsu"

Born in Ibaraki Prefecture on February 12, 1935
On graduating from Mito Commercial High School in 1953, he joined the Nishitetsu Lions and secured himself the regular shortstop. His first year’s record was .281 BA and 27 HR, exceptionally good for a new high school graduate. His home run record as a high school rookie was to be broken as late as in 1986 when Kiyohara (Seibu Lions) belted 31 home runs. He contributed greatly to the three successive victories of the Nishitetsu Lions in the Japan Series (1956-58) by batting second, followed by Hiroshi Oshita and Futoshi Nakanishi (thus forming a formidable batting trio).
After playing for the Nishitetsu Lions for 10 years, he transferred to the Kokutetsu Swallows in 1963 and played there (the team’s name underwent changes afterwards) for 7 years. During these 17 years when he was in active competition, he was always a good clutch hitter in a decisive game.
After coaching the Kintetsu Buffaloes for a year (1972), his retired life has been occupied by writing for newspapers & magazines, and giving commentary on TV and radio. Last but not least, he is an ardent member of a society which has been campaigning to help grow aodamo used to make bats.

His career record: 17 seasons (infielder), 1,814 games, 6,137 AB, 1,699 H., 263 HR, 888 RBI and .277 BA. Rookie of the year 1953. Batting champion in 1956.He was 6 times in the Best Nine and appeared 9 times in the All-Star Games.He throws and bats right.

 

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