Daisuke Yamashita

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Daisuke Yamashita

Biographical Information[edit]

Daisuke Yamashita played 14 seasons for the Taiyo Whales. The infielder was a four-time All-Star who won 8 Gold Gloves. He later became an announcer, coach and manager.

Yamashita led the Tokyo Big Six University League in average in the spring of 1973. He began his Nippon Pro Baseball career in 1974, hitting a meek .181/.265/.271 in 92 games. He still made his first Central League All-Star team. In 12975, he improved to .248/.324/.360 and was again an All-Star. During 1976, he batted .276/.349/.392 and won his first Gold Glove (then known as Diamond Glove) at shortstop.

Yamashita had a big year in 1977, hitting .260/.338/.442 with 18 home runs and 77 runs. He won his second straight Gold Glove. He also started a streak of 302 consecutive chances without an error, which would continue into the next season.

In 1978, Daisuke hit .253/.342/.393 with 8 triples and won a Gold Glove. He made his third All-Star team. In 1979, he improved his batting line to .282/.355/.426 and he picked up his 4th Gold Glove. During 1980, the Taiyo shortstop won his 5th Gold Glove and hit .265/.312/.399; he also stole 15 bases in 21 tries.

Yamashita batted .278/.347/.443 in 1981 with 31 doubles and 16 home runs. He made his final All-Star team and won his 6th Gold Glove. He led the CL in two-baggers. He made his only Best Nine as the top shortstop in the league, benefiting in part from an off-year by Yoshihiko Takahashi.

In 1982, Yamashita hit 18 home runs and scored 79 times. He hit .277/.350/.434 and won his 7th consecutive Gold Glove. His final Gold Glove came in 1983, when the veteran also hit .269/.357/.410 with 73 runs and 33 doubles. He led the CL with 575 plate appearances and also tied Kenichi Yazawa for the most doubles in the league.

Yamashita declined from there and hit .247/.304/.305 in 1984. He rebounded somewhat, hitting .280/.340/.399 in 1985 and .265/.310/.367 in 1986. He finished up in 1987 with a weak .186/.215/.267 line.

Overall, he played 1,609 games in NPB, with a .262/.332/.393 batting line. The defensive wizard at shortstop hit 245 doubles and 129 homers and scored 657 runs. He walked (642) more times than he struck (534). He stole 95 bases but was caught 62 times.

Yamashita was an announcer from 1989 through 1992 then coached for the Yokohama BayStars from 1993 through 2000. In 2001-2002, he was back in the booth. He coached for the Japanese national team that won Bronze in the 2002 Asian Games.

Yokohama DeNA BayStars minor league head coach Daisuke Yamashita in 2013.

In 2003, he became the first person from Shizuoka Prefecture to manage a NPB team when he took over the reigns of Yokohama from the legendary Masahiko Mori. The club was a miserable 45-94-1 to finish 22 1/2 games out of 5th and 42 1/2 out of first, well in the cellar, in his first year. In 2004, Yokohama improved to 59-76-3 but they again finished last, costing Yamashita his job.

Yamashita was hired to coach with the AZL Dodgers in 2009.

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