League V in the first year of inauguration, the first five years of Japan’s most glorious in 2016
Nippon-Ham announced on the 16th that Hideki Kuriyama will retire for this season only. He has been in office for 10 consecutive years, surpassing Keiji Osawa, who was called the “boss,” and is the longest in the history of the team, and has 678 wins in total (as of 16th), surpassing Mr. Osawa in the history of the team. Since he has no experience as a coach, he won the Pacific League championship in 2012, his first year in office, and in 2016 he became the best in Japan for the first time in 10 years. He has achieved enough results to be evaluated as a great general.
However, from the year after the number one in Japan, it will be 5th, 3rd, 5th and 5th. The possibility of advancing to the Climax Series (CS) has already disappeared this season, and the battle that lost the goal continues. In my later years as a director, I heard various questions. I would like to look back on the “merits and sins” that I have shown over the last 10 years.
Director Kuriyama retired from active duty only in 1990, and then moved to the media such as television. Even though he had no experience as a coach, there were concerns and doubts about his sudden appointment as a coach. Among them, 2012, the first year of his inauguration, is the first year of the major league transfer of Yu Darvish (currently Padres) who has been active as an ace. I needed a new axis. Yuki Saito, who will retire only this season, will be appointed as the opening pitcher. Furthermore, it was pitcher Mitsuo Yoshikawa (currently Seibu) who was worried about controlling the ball.
Yoshikawa, who has not won in the past three years, has been selected as the Pacific League MVP with 14 wins and 5 losses this year and an ERA of 1.71. Director Kuriyama urged Yoshikawa to backwater, saying, “If it doesn’t work this season, I can take off my uniform.” In addition, Sho Nakata, an outfielder who placed the center of the batting line, continued to profess that he would hit No. 4 as long as I was the director, and Nakata also lived up to that expectation. With a batting average of .239, he hit 24 home runs, 77 RBIs, and got a chance to molt to the main gun, and later won the RBI king three times. He wrote a “letter” to the opening pitcher every year and gave him a favorite book. He put his expectations into words and encouraged him to inspire.
It is also worth noting that Shohei Ohtani (currently the Angels), who joined the team in 2013, supported the play of “dual wield pitching” and established a methodology for actually using it. When he joined Otani, the team assumed that he would be faster as a fielder. In fact, he started in the opening round of the first year with a right fielder. I waited for the pitcher’s debut until I got a body.
During the Nippon-Ham era, Otani had a rest day before and after the pitching game to prevent him from participating in the game at all. He continued to stubbornly defend the outfielder’s voice, saying, “The team may have been sacrificed for the players.” From the following year, he was appointed as a designated hitter, judging that the burden would still be heavy. The promise to use Otani as a dual wield was also passed on to the Angels, who later transferred.