Tatsumi Murata

From BR Bullpen

Tatsumi Murata

  • Bats Left, Throws Left
  • Height 5' 10", Weight 162 lb.

Tatsumi Murata pitched 15 seasons in Nippon Pro Baseball and made three All-Star teams.

Murata fanned 18 one game in high school but lost the contest when the other team's pitcher threw a no-hitter. He played for Mitsubishi Motors Kawasaki in the industrial leagues after high school. The Kintetsu Buffaloes chose him in the second round of the 1974 draft.

Tatsumi debuted in 1975 with 11 runs (6 earned) in 20 innings over 11 games. He had a 3.90 ERA in 15 outings in 1977 then was 5-2 with a save and a 1.82 ERA in 1978, walking just 8 in 73 2/3 IP.

Murata went 12-8 with two saves and a 3.42 ERA in 1979 with 34 walks in 192 1/3 IP. He finished sixth in the Pacific League in ERA and made his first All-Star squad. He also tied for the league lead with three shutouts. He allowed two runs in 4 2/3 IP in the 1979 Japan Series.

In 1980, Murata fell to 7-7, 6.22 with two saves, giving up 165 hits and 57 walks in 136 innings. He was 0-1 with a 7.71 ERA In the 1980 Japan Series. With Kintetsu ahead of the Hiroshima Carp 3 games to 2, he started game six and was knocked out in a loss as the Carp went on to take the Series in seven games.

Murata rebounded to a 3.34 ERA in 1981 though he again was 7-7. He finished 7th in the PL in ERA, second among Muratas behind Choji Murata. In 1982, the left-hander slumped to 7-11 with a 4.27 ERA and two saves. He did make his second All-Star team.

In a reduced role in 1983, Murata was 2-6 with a 5.00 ERA in 25 games. He had a 4-9, 4.81 record in 1984. In 1985, Tatsumi was 9-14 with two saves and a 4.44 ERA, allowing 202 hits and 81 walks in 184 2/3 IP while striking out only 57. He still made his third and last All-Star team.

The Yokota native had a 14-10, 4.08 record in 1986. In 1987, Murata was 4-7 with a save and a 4.92 ERA; he led the PL with 9 hit batsmen. He had one last good season in 1988, going 10-3 with a 3.32 ERA and again showing good control (28 BB in 124 2/3 IP) as in the early part of his career.

Murata struggled in 1989 to a 4-6, 5.48 record. He allowed two runs in 1 2/3 IP in the 1989 Japan Series. Moving on to the Taiyo Whales in 1990, he gave up 3 runs in 7 2/3 IP to end his career.

Murata had a career record of 85-90 with 10 saves and a 4.19 ERA in 404 games.

After retiring as a pitcher, Murata has worked as a TV baseball commentator and a coach with the Buffaloes.

Source: Japan Baseball Daily