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Shigeru Fujio

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Shigeru Fujio

  • Bats Right, Throws Right
  • Height 5' 8", Weight 165 lb.

Shigeru Fujio played for 12 seasons for the Yomiuri Giants.

Fujio debuted in 1953, going 2 for 12 with five walks in 16 games. He hit .191/.221/.322 in 54 games as the backup to Jyun Hirota in 1954, then .286/.357/.435 in 60 contests in 1955. By the 1955 Japan Series, he was splitting time with Hirota and went 3 for 17 with a triple and a home run as Yomiuri beat the Nankai Hawks in seven games.

Shigeru succeeded Hirota as starter in 1956 and hit .276/.316/.436 with 14 homers and 12 steals (in 14 tries). He made the Central League All-Star team and was picked to the Best Nine as the league's top backstop. He was 5th in average behind Wally Yonamine, Tetsuharu Kawakami, Kenjiro Tamiya and Yoshio Yoshida. He was 5 for 19 with a double and triple in the 1956 Japan Series but Yomiuri lost to the Nishitetsu Lions.

In 1957, the Nishinomiya native put up a .256/.314/.414 line and was again an All-Star and Best Nine. He was just 1 for 13 with 7 strikeouts in the 1957 Japan Series as Yomiuri was swept by the Lions. 1958 was his best season for OPS (.283/.323/.451) and he again had double-digit home runs (11) and steals (14, but caught 8 times). He made his third straight All-Star team and Best Nine and was 5th in average behind Tamiya, Shigeo Nagashima, Yonamine and Yoshida. Fujio hit .280/.333/.320 in the 1958 Japan Series but Nishitetsu again beat the Giants.

Fujio batted .264/.321/.413 with 13 homers and 70 RBI in 1959, making his last All-Star team and Best Nine. He was 2 for 12 in the 1959 Japan Series, when Nankai swept Yomiuri. With Masahiko Mori succeeding Fujio, Shigeru moved to the outfield in 1960. He hit .245/.300/.430 with 15 homers and 13 steals (withotu getting caught).

Returning to catcher as Mori's backup, Fujio hit only .186/.293/.267 in 1961, then was 0 for 5 with a run in the 1961 Japan Series. He was 9 for 55 with two walks, three steals and a home run in 1962, 13 for 47 with two walks in 1963, 0 for 5 with three whiffs as Yomiuri beat Nishitetsu in the 1963 Japan Series and 8 for 62 with 4 walks, two doubles and a homer in 1964.

Overall, Fujio batted .253/.307/.400 in 868 games in NPB. He ran a resort after his baseball career ended.

Source: Japan Baseball Daily

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