Bates/Parker: This Week in Baseball History: Mashi Murakami Mania

From SABR members Mike Bates and Bill Parker at This Week in Baseball History podcast on August 16, 2017, with SABR member Rob Fitts:

Major League Baseball, like America, is at its best when it’s diverse and reflective of the countries that play the game. So this week, 52 years after the anniversary of Masanori Murakami Day at Candlestick Park, Mike and Bill, along with special guest and Murakami biographer Rob Fitts (, remember the first player of Japanese descent to play in the Big Leagues.

Mashi’s career took him from Japan to Phoenix to Fresno and San Francisco before finally returning to Japan in 1966. Along the way they discuss how the 20 year old came to be a Giant, why he was exactly what the club and San Francisco needed in 1964 and 1965, why he went back to his homeland, and why it took 30 years for another Japanese player to play in the Majors.

Listen to the full podcast here:

Originally published: August 16, 2017. Last Updated: August 16, 2017.