Masaki Yoshihara

From BR Bullpen

Masaki Yoshihara (also transliterated as Yoshiwara)

  • Bats Right, Throws Right
  • Height 5' 5", Weight 145 lb.

Catcher Masaki Yoshihara was a high school teammate of Tetsuharu Kawakami. In the spring of 1938, hitting .265/.390/.382 and he followed with a .194/.297/.202 season in the fall for the Tokyo Giants. In 1939, the 20-year-old batted .241/.337/.306. He hit .230/.391/.276 in 1940 and led the Japanese Professional Baseball League with 83 walks. He also stole 30 bases, two shy of league leader Masayoshi Ishida. The young backstop hit .250/.368/.331 in 1941 and was drafted into the military the next year. For his career, Yoshihara hit .237/.362/.297 and was called Yomiuri's greatest catcher ever by Shigeru Chiba. Yoshihara was known for his strong arm.

Yoshihara died of disease in Burma while serving in the Japanese army as an artilleryman. 34 years later, he was inducted into the Japanese Baseball Hall of Fame.

Source: Japanbaseballdaily.com by Gary Garland