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Baseball: Kadota, Yamada, 3 others inducted into Hall of Fame+
[January 10, 2006]

Baseball: Kadota, Yamada, 3 others inducted into Hall of Fame+

(Japan Economic Newswire Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge)TOKYO, Jan. 10_(Kyodo) _ Three-time Pacific League home run king Hiromitsu Kadota and Hisashi Yamada, ace pitcher for the Hankyu Braves in their heyday in the 1970s, have been inducted into the Japanese Baseball Hall of Fame, the selection panel said Tuesday.

Former Chunichi Dragons infielder Morimichi Takagi and former Nishitetsu Lions infielder and baseball commentator Yasumitsu Toyoda have also been selected along with former baseball commissioner Hiromori Kawashima, bringing the total number of inductees to 159.

Kadota, 57, played for the defunct Nankai Hawks for 19 years of his 23-year playing career and hit 567 homers, third on the all-time list in Japanese baseball, along with 2,566 hits and 1,678 RBIs.

He won the Pacific League home run title in 1981, 1983 and 1988 while being named the league's MVP in 1988.

Yamada, 57, posted a 284-166 record with 43 saves with Hankyu and won the Pacific League MVP honor for three straight years from 1976.

The submarine right-hander led the league in the number of wins three times and in earned run average twice. He was also named the Japan Series MVP in 1977.

Takagi, 64, was known for his speed as well as solid batting and fielding and won the Central League stolen base title three times. He had 2,274 hits over his 21-year career, all spent with the Chunichi Dragons, and had a stint as the team's manager during the 1990s.

Toyoda, 70, helped Nishitetsu win three consecutive Japan Series crowns from 1956 and has widely been known as a notable baseball commentator since he retired from his playing career in 1969.

Kawashima, 83, became Central League president in 1984 and served as Japanese baseball commissioner from 1998-2004.

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