Shiro Takegami

From BR Bullpen

ShiroTakegami.jpg

Shiro Takegami (Fighting Shiro)

  • Bats Right, Throws Right
  • Height 5' 7", Weight 160 lb.

Biographical Information[edit]

Shiro Takegami spent almost a decade in Nippon Pro Baseball and was a four-time All-Star.

After college, Takegami played for Kawai Musical Instruments in the industrial leagues. He was an 8th-round draft pick by the Sankei Atoms in 1966.

In 1967, he hit .299/.331/.380. He was 6th in the Central League in average, right ahead of Lou Jackson. He hit just 3 homers, but his first was an inside-the-park job; no rookie before had ever gotten their first homer in such a manner. He was named the CL's Rookie of the Year.

Takegami batted .283/.331/.358 in 1968 and made his first CL All-Star team. He hit .250/.325/.435 in 1969 with a significant rise in power production with 21 home runs; he made his second All-Star team. In 1970, Shiro's batting line was .265/.332/.357 and was again an All-Star. He hit .272/.314/.410 and his last All-Star team in 1971.

In 1972, Takegami hit .279/.342/.408. The 32-year-old produced at a .211/.275/.306 rate in 1973. His batting line was .260/.331/.333 in 1974. He fell to .229/.315/.332 in 1975, his final season.

Overall, Takegami hit .266/.325/.375 in 977 games in NPB. He was known for stealing signs and being a fiery player.

Shiro became manager of the Yakult Swallows (successor to the Atoms) in 1980. His club went 68-52-10 to finish second that year, but fell to 56-58-16 and 4th place in 1981. From there, the team finished last in 1982 (45-75-10) and 1983 (53-69-8). After a 4-13-1 start in 1984, he was let go in favor of Masayuki Dobashi.

Takegami coached for the Yomiuri Giants from 1995 through 1999. He also became a TV commentator.

As an administrator, Takegami was known for his thoughtfulness, sending birthday gifts to the parents of his players.

Source: Japan Baseball Daily by Gary Garland

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