Motoji Takuwa

From BR Bullpen

Motoji Takuwa

  • Bats Right, Throws Right
  • Height 5' 10", Weight 147 lb.

Motoji Takuwa starred briefly in Nippon Pro Baseball.

Takuwa burst onto the scene as a rookie with the Nankai Hawks in 1954, going 26-9 with a 1.58 ERA, .183 opponent average and 0.95 WHIP. He won the first pitching Triple Crown in Pacific League history and led the PL in innings (329 2/3), wins (26, tied with Fumio Tanaka), strikeouts (275), hit batsmen (14) and ERA. He won Rookie of the Year honors but still lost Best Nine honors at pitcher to Sadao Nishimura.

In 1955, the young right-hander had a 24-11, 2.43 record and .206 opponent average. He tied Hisafumi Kawamura for the league lead in appearances (58), led in wins again and led in homers allowed (23). He fanned 205, 20 behind leader Kawamura. He made the PL All-Star team and missed the top 10 in ERA by .04. During the 1955 Japan Series, the 20-year-old lost game one in relief against the Yomiuri Giants and had no-decisions in starts in games three and five. Nankai won the Series in seven games. He allowed 14 hits, 6 walks and 7 runs in 7 innings in his rough work.

All that work his first two years did a number on the slender hurler's arm and he never reached 100 innings again. He still did okay (6-5, 2.29) in 24 games in 1956 but surrendered 8 walks and 9 runs in 9 2/3 IP in 1957. He had a 4.38 ERA in 11 outings in 1958 and lost his only game in 1959 (4 H, 2 R in 3 IP). Moving to the Kintetsu Buffalo, he pitched badly in 1960 (10 R in 11 IP) and 1961 (15 R in 8 1/3 IP) to end his career.

Overall, Takuwa was 56-26 with a 2.29 ERA and .205 opponent average in 168 games (67 starts). He later was a commentator for Mainichi Broadcasting.

Source: Japan Baseball Daily