Posts in category: Japanese Baseball Cards
More Memories Of Uniforms – Eagles Edition

Finally a reasonably easy one…The Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles were born as an expansion team following the 2004 season to take the place of the Osaka Kintetsu Buffaloes who had merged with the Orix Blue Wave.  They’ve had no name changes since …

Kosuke Fukudome

Kosuke Fukudome became the latest member of the Meikyukai last Saturday when he singled for his 2000th career hit (498 in MLB and 1502 in NPB) last Saturday against the Carp.  Fukudome was the first round pick of the Chunichi Dragons in the fall 1…

Card Of The Week June 26

Inter-league play wrapped up last week* and once again, the Fukuoka Softbank Hawks were the “champions”.  This is the sixth time that the Hawks won inter-league in the 16 years it’s been held.  It’s also the second year in a row they’ve won a…

Nagashima Released

Jay Shelton sent me a link to a YouTube video showing how to liberate a baseball card from a PSA grading slab lat night and I decided to try out their technique on my 1973 Shigeo Nagashima card.  It was pretty straightforward – all I really needed…

Recently Announced New Stuff

Just doing a quick post to get caught up on what’s been announced lately in the way of new releases{- BBM has announced two more of this year’s pack based team sets.  The Swallows set might be out as soon as I post this – it’s supposed to hit the …

Card Of The Week June 19

To say Seiya Suzuki of the Carp had a good weekend would be an understatement.On Friday night, the Carp and the Orix Buffaloes had a 4-4 tie going into the bottom of the 12th inning.  Yoshitaka Isomura led off the inning with a double and Suzuki t…

Recent Ebay Win

I don’t very often crow about an Ebay win right after I’ve picked something up but I have to share this one.  Rather than tell you about it, I’ll just show you:Yup, that’s 1973 Calbee card #1 of Shigeo Nagashima, probably the most iconic Calbee ca…

Card Of The Week June 12

Nowadays the photos on Calbee cards mostly show action shots but that’s not always been the case.  They used a lot of posed shots in their first couple years.  Most of those posed photos were taken on the field but there were a few that appea…

Shikoku Island League All Stars 2 – Electric Bugaloo

For the second year in a row the independent Shikoku Island League has sent an all star team to North America to take on teams from the independent Can-Am League.  They kicked off the games last night (June 9) with a 7-1 drubbing of the Sussex Cou…

Mint Ships Overseas!

Kenny aka Zippy Zappy tweeted to me last week to let me know that the Mint chain of card stores in Japan was now offering overseas shipping.Apparently the way it works is that you identify items that you want on their on-line store and send them an ema…

Card Of The Week June 5

Shohei Ohtani threw a pitch at 163 kph (102 mph) today, setting a new NPB velocity record.  Here’s the video of it while it lasts (H/T YakyuDB).Just to remind you that he hits pretty well too, here’s one of his 2013 BBM Fighters cards (#F02b):BBM …

RIP Tsuguo Gotoh

Former Tigers catcher-infielder-outfielder, coach and manager Tsuguo Gotoh passed away on Monday at age 92 (H/T NPB Reddit).  Gotoh has joined the Tigers in 1948 from Hosei University and played 10 seasons with them.  He hit .300 or better fo…

Chips And Cheerleaders

A couple newly announced sets to talk about:- The checklist for this seasons’s Series Two from Calbee went up on their website in the last week or so.  Like Series One, the new set has 72 player cards (six per team) and a 12 card subset featu…

Card Of The Week May 29

The Hawks crushed the Buffaloes last Tuesday by a score of 22-6.  The sole bright spot for Orix was Tony Blanco, who went three for four with two home runs and five RBIs:(H/T YakyuDB for the video)These were his second and third home runs for the …

The Lions Of San Jose

In the winter of 1982-83, Harry Steve, the general manager of Class A California League team in San Jose, had a problem.  The Expos, his team’s major league affiliate in 1982, had ended their affiliation and the team would be without a Player Deve…

Card Of The Week May 22

The Fighters beat the Hawks last Tuesday 7-2.  It was Rick Van Den Hurk’s first loss at the top level in Japan since his debut with the Hawks last season.  He had won his 14th straight decision a week earlier to pass Taigen Kaku of the Lions …

BBM’s Website Is Back!

After being down for the better part of a month, BBM’s website is back on line.  They’ve moved their list of new sets to a new page.  They’ve added info for a couple of the sets I mentioned last monththe Tatsunari Hara box set and the Carp and Baystars team sets – but not for the Lions team set and the Ohtani/Fujinami box set.  The Lions set is scheduled to be released this coming Friday so BBM better get moving.

BBM did add information for two more of the team sets – the Buffaloes and the Fighters.  Both sets have base sets of 81 cards featuring around 70 cards for the players and manager and several subsets.  Both sets have four insert sets – the Fighters have 27 cards over the four sets while the Buffaloes have 18.  Both sets have the usual collection of autograph cards available.  I’m amused that the Fighters set has an 11 card subset featuring the players in street clothes – I guess BBM felt threatened by the AI set that came out recently.  Both sets will be out in mid-June.

Epoch has also recently announced a couple new products.  The latest of the team based “Stars & Rookies” sets is for the Buffaloes and will be released on June 25.  It’s pretty much the same idea as the Lions and Baystars sets Epoch has released earlier this season – each box (that retails for 12,960 yen or roughly $118) contains two mini-boxes containing 6 cards each – one or two will be autographed cards and the others will all be base set cards.  I think it breaks down to 9 base set cards and three autograph cards per box.  There are apparently some “hot boxes” that will contain four autograph cards.  There are 27 cards in the base set and a boatload of possible autograph cards.

The other Epoch set is their latest ultra high end set done in conjunction with the OB Club (aka the Japan Baseball Promotion Association).  The theme of this one appears to be “League Leaders”.  Once again, it’s a very expensive box (16,200 yen or around $147) for a one pack box containing two base set cards, one insert/parallel card and two autograph cards.  There are 27 players featured in the set – each player has a base set card, two different insert/parallel cards, two different autograph cards and a autographed booklet card available.  The set will be out on July 9.

There’s something on Jambalaya’s upcoming release schedule that is intriguingly called “Kabaya Central League Baseball gum”.  I finally did some Googling of the Hiragana text for it (カバヤ セントラルリーグベースボールガム) and discovered that this is a Epoch set being packaged with banana flavored gum from Kabaya.  There’s 36 cards in the set (six for each of the six Central League teams).  The set is being sold in boxes of 20 1 card packs.  The boxes have an MSRP of 2160 yen (about $19.60).  I’m including this link to Amazon Japan’s listing of the set so that you can see all the cards – the boxes are not eligible to be shipped outside of Japan though.

Fumiya Nishiguchi And The 1995 Sioux City Explorers

A couple months back I did a post on Lions pitcher Fumiya Nishiguchi on the occasion of his retirement.  I mentioned that I had learned while researching the post that the Lions had sent Nishiguchi to the Sioux City Explorers of the Northern Leagu…

RIP Mikio Kudoh

Former Nippon-Ham Fighters pitcher Mikio Kudoh has passed away from liver failure at age 55.  Kudoh was drafted out of high school by the Fighters in second round of the fall 1978 draft.  He debuted with the ichi-gun team in 1979, going 0-1 w…

Card Of The Week May 15

The Marines and Eagles played two crazy games the last two days in Chiba.  Yesterday, the Marines beat the Eagles 13-12 in 10 innings, winning on a walk off single by Tadahito Iguchi.  Today was another extra inning victory for Lotte, coming …

Card Of The Week May 8

Busy weekend so I’m a day late on this…Jonny Gomes asked for and received his release last week from the Eagles.  He apparently had a family matter to deal with and hopefully everything will work out well for him.  His exit, however, brings…

Takahiro Arai

I’m late getting around to this but Takahiro Arai of the Carp got his 2000th hit last week.  Arai was born and raised in Hiroshima but went to college at Komazawa University in Tokyo.  He was drafted by his hometown team the Carp in the sixth…

Card Of The Week May 1

In addition to Trey Hillman’s talents as a manager, he apparently had also trained as a gymnast.  This was expressed in Japan by occasionally doing backflips, as shown here:2004 BBM Fighters #F99I’m curious when this photo was taken.  Hillman…

2016 KBO "Baseball’s Best Players" Set

As I mentioned the other day, I picked up a box of one of the latest Korean baseball card sets recently.  This is the second of the “Baseball’s Best Players” sets and it’s very similar to the previous one.Each box contains 20 eight card packs. &nb…

1st Version Fighters Arizona Photos

I mentioned in my post about the new 1st Version set that typically BBM will use photos from last season for the cards (unless the team changes uniforms over the winter) when they can.  They have to get photos in training camp, however, for a…

2016 BBM 1st Version set

2016 BBM 1st Version Set SummarySize: 372 cards numbered 1-336, CF01-CF36Cards Per Team:  28 (team card, manager + 26 players)Team Card Theme:  Spring TrainingNumber Of Leader Cards:  N/AChecklists:  NoneSub…

RIP Koji Yamamoto

Former Giant and Orion Koji Yamamoto passed away from liver cancer a few days ago.  Yamamoto attended Hosei University and was drafted by Yomiuri in the fifth round of the fall 1975 draft from Honda Suzuka of the industrial leagues.  He and K…

Lots Of New Stuff

BBM’s website is apparently a mess.  They had been doing updates of their new set listings about once a month.  In March they did their regular update which disappeared a few days later.  Now the site is apparently down completely. &nbsp…

Card Of The Week April 24

One of the regular player cards in the latest Calbee set was of Yomiuri Giants “outfielder” Takahiro Suzuki.  I say “outfielder” as he’s really pretty much just a pinch runner nowadays.  The inclusion of Suzuki in the set is significant as it…

More Memories Of Uniforms – Lions Edition

I thought I’d knock out another one of these while I wait for my 1st Version set to get delivered…Following the 1949 season, the eight team Japanese Baseball League transformed into Nippon Professional Baseball with 15 teams split between the Central…

Card Of The Week April 17

It was a rough days for closers today in NPB.  Yasuaki Yamasaki of the Baystars gave up three runs in the bottom of the ninth to the Swallows, handing them a 5-4 victory.  Over in Nagoya, Koji Fukutani of the Dragons blew a save in the ninth …

Card Of The Week April 10

In honor of Kenta Maeda homering in his Dodger debut last week, here’s a card of Maeda batting with the Carp:2010 BBM 2nd Version #794

More Memories Of Uniform – Orix Edition

I really did plan to get back to doing these posts faster but it’s already been two months since the last one…The team that is now the Orix Buffaloes began life in 1936 as Hankyu and played their home games at Hankyu Nishinomiya Stadium in Nishinomiy…