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Tuesday, September 13, 2022

Japanese slugger Munetaka Murakami makes NPB home run history with 55th blast of 2022 season

Munetaka Murakami, a 22-year-old third baseman with the Yakult Swallows, tied Sadaharu Oh’s single-season Nippon Professional Baseball (NPB) home run record for Japanese-born players on Tuesday. Murakami homered twice, giving him 55 home runs on the season, and drove in four runs in a 9-7 loss against the Yomiuri Giants….

NPB’s overall single-season home-run record belongs to former Seattle Mariners outfielder Wladimir Balentien, who homered 60 times during the 2013 season. Balentien also played for the Swallows, meaning the path ahead of Murakami is similar to the one being traversed by New York Yankees slugger Aaron Judge. (Judge is attempting to break Roger Maris’ franchise and American League single-season record for home runs.)

Murakami entered Tuesday hitting .333/.469/.747 with 53 home runs, 128 runs batted in, and nearly as many walks (105) as strikeouts (108). He was averaging a home run every 8.2 at-bats; for reference, Judge is averaging one every 9.2 at-bats.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: September 13, 2022 at 10:35 AM | 13 comment(s)
  Beats: japanese baseball, npb

Sunday, September 11, 2022

Dragons veteran Kosuke Fukudome to retire after season

Kosuke Fukudome, a former big leaguer and the oldest active NPB player at 45, will retire at the end of the season, the Central League’s Chunichi Dragons said Thursday.

The left-handed hitter spent five years in the majors from 2008 with the Chicago Cubs, Cleveland Indians and Chicago White Sox, logging a total of 498 hits and 42 home runs in 596 games.

The outfielder joined the Dragons in 1999 as their top draft pick out of the corporate leagues and won the CL batting title twice as well as the league’s MVP award in 2006 before joining the Cubs as a free agent.

He returned to Japan in 2013 with the CL’s Hanshin Tigers before re-signing with Chunichi ahead of the 2021 season.

With less than a month left to go in the NPB season, Fukudome has a total of 2,450 hits in NPB and the majors combined. In NPB alone, he has batted .286 with 285 home runs and 1,078 RBIs in 2,022 games.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: September 11, 2022 at 10:14 PM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: kosuke fukudome, npb



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