Katsuya Nomura

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Katsuya Nomura
野村 克也
Catcher/Manager
Born: (1935-06-29) June 29, 1935 (age 78)
Kyōtango, Kyoto, Japan
Batted: Right Threw: Right
Professional debut
NPB: June 17, 1954 for the Nankai Hawks
Last professional appearance
October 3, 1980 for the Seibu Lions
NPB statistics
Batting average .277
Hits 2901
RBIs 1988
Teams

As player

As manager

Career highlights and awards
Inducted 1989

Katsuya Nomura (野村 克也 Nomura Katsuya?, born June 29, 1935 in Amino, Takeno District (Present: Kyotango), Kyoto prefecture, Japan) was one of Nippon Professional Baseball's (NPB) greatest players as a catcher and was also a long-time manager for the Yakult Swallows, the Hanshin Tigers, and the Rakuten Golden Eagles of NPB's Pacific League.

Career[edit]

He lost father in three years old, and mother and brother grew him in poverty. He couldn't attend national tournaments in high school age, but he was given the chance from the Nankai Hawks as a trainee without salary.

During a career that spanned four decades from 1954 to 1980, Nomura hit 657 home runs and led the Pacific League in homers eight straight seasons. (However, it should be taken into consideration that his home park, Osaka Stadium, measured only 276 feet until 1972 and 300 feet from 1972 onward down the lines, and 380 feet to straightaway center-tiny dimensions by today's standards.)[1] He finished his career with 2901 hits.[2]

In 1965, Nomura won the league's first Triple Crown.[3] He was a player-manager between 1970 and 1977.[4] He played for 26 years, the longest NPB playing career until Kimiyasu Kudo pitched in his 27th season in 2008.[5]

Nomura steered the Yakult Swallows to four league titles in the 1990s, and won the Japan Series in 1993, 1995 and 1997. One of his important contribution was growing Atsuya Furuta to be a great catcher. Furuta sometimes regards as the successor of his boss, because he prised the 1993 League MVP, and became the player-manager of Swallows between 2006-2007, which is the only one case of NPB after Nomura in the Hawks.

After stepping down as the Yakult skipper, Nomura managed the Hanshin Tigers from 1999 to 2001 but resigned after Hanshin finished at the bottom of the Central League for three straight seasons. Additionally, Nomura's wife, Sachiyo, was in legal trouble in 2001 due to charges of tax evasion, which also contributed to his decision to relinquish his position.[6]

Nomura was hired to manage the industrial league team, Shidax Baseball Club, in 2003. He led the team through the 2005 season. Nomura returned to the NPB as a manager for the 2006 season with the Rakuten Golden Eagles. In so doing, he became the oldest manager in the history of NPB.

On April 29, 2009 he reached the 1,500 wins mark in his managerial career, but he also holds the record for overall number of losses.[7] He led the Eagles to their best-ever record of second place the regular season.[8]

He retired at the end of the 2009 season and was replaced by American, and former Hiroshima manager, Marty Brown.

In 2013, he acted a funny character named "Boyaite-Bakkari-Man" in commercial message of Japanese soccer lottery.

References[edit]

External links[edit]

Awards
Preceded by
Takehiro Ishii
Matsutaro Shoriki Award
1993
Succeeded by
Shigeo Nagashima
Ichiro Suzuki
Sporting positions
Preceded by
Yasushi Tao
Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles manager
20062009
Succeeded by
Marty Brown