Tom Matoba

sacrifice hit

Deliberately bunting the ball in a manner that allows a runner on base to advance to another base, while the batter is put out.


Late inning rallies

Asahi players were most amazing when they pulled victory from defeat in final innings with sacrifice hits and stolen bases. Players like Tom Matoba were league leaders in stealing bases and reaching first base the most. The crowds loved the amiable Matoba as a “slugger,” too, for batting home runs out of the ballpark.


Tom Matoba, 1926. Courtesy of the Kitagawa Family.