Akitada Niiyama

From BR Bullpen

Akitada Niiyama

  • Bats Right, Throws Right
  • Height 5' 10", Weight 165 lb.

Akitada Niiyama pitched eight seasons for the Nankai Hawks.

Niiyama was 21-13 in college with 9 walkless complete games, tying a Tokyo Big Six University League record. He was 1-1 with a 3.64 ERA in 1962 with 56 hits allowed in 41 1/3 IP. In 1963, the Kobe native went 4-1 with a 2.85 ERA, walking only 13 in 98 innings.

Niiyama had his busiest season in 1964, pitching 50 games and going 10-9 with a 3.07 ERA. He appeared in games 3 through 5 in the 1964 Japan Series and won game four. He tossed five shutout innings in the event, allowing only two hits as Nankai won the event.

In 1965, the right-hander improved to 11-4, 2.87 for his best season in terms of wins. He allowed one run in two innings in the 1965 Japan Series, which Nankai lost to the Yomiuri Giants, starting their 9-Series run under Sadaharu Oh and Shigeo Nagashima.

Niiyama was 7-5 with a 2.25 ERA in 1966 for his peak ERA. He allowed only 79 hits and 28 walks in 104 innings. He tossed one shutout inning in the 1966 Japan Series, as the Hawks again fell to Yomiuri. Akitada was 4-6 with a 3.80 ERA in 1967. He was 1-3 with a 3.89 ERA in 1968. Niiyama was roughed up for 20 runs and 26 hits in 18 1/3 IP in 1969 to end his career.

Overall, Niiyama was 38-29 with a 3.19 ERA in 267 games in Nippon Pro Baseball. He later coached the Hawks, the Hankyu Braves and Hanshin Tigers as well as the French national team.

Source: Japanbaseballdaily.com