Takeo Sato

From BR Bullpen

Takeo Sato (佐藤 武夫) (Kuro-chan)

  • Bats Right, Throws Right
  • Height 5' 7", Weight 132 lb.

BR NPB page

Biographical Information[edit]

Catcher Takeo Sato spent nine years in Nippon Professional Baseball then became an umpire.

Sato debuted in the first season of the Japanese Professional Baseball League, going 1 for 2 for the Osaka Tigers in the spring of 1936 and 0 for 1 in the fall campaign. In 1937, he hit .227/.283/.357 for the Eagles. His 13 doubles were third in the JPBL, behind Masato Monzen and Masaru Kageura. He fell to 0-for-11 in the fall.

With the Tokyo Senators, he was 1 for 13 with two walks in the spring but hit .329/.393/.447 in the fall. Had he qualified, he would have been third in average, behind Haruyasu Nakajima and Kaichi Masu. He then rattled off a series of seven campaigns in which he hit no higher than .182, slugged higher than .250 or posted an OBP higher than .268. He slumped to .182/.268/.228 in 1939. He struck out a league-high 56 times, two more than Isaburo Hirai or Toshiaki Okamura.

The Senators were renamed Tsubasa in 1940, producing at a .158/.254/.225 clip. He was third in the JPBL with 62 whiffs (behind Ichizo Murase and Saburo Nakamura) and tied for 6th with three home runs. With Taiyo in 1941, he hit .136/.213/.158 with 6 runs and 11 RBI in 84 games. He led in strikeouts for the second time, his 52 being 8 more than runner-up Minoru Morita.

In his last season as a regular, he batted .159/.215/.219 for Taiyo in 1942 (league slugging % was .244). He was 5th with 48 strikeouts (between Makoto Kozuru and Seizo Furukawa) and tied for fourth with four home runs. He was only 6-for-61 with 10 walks and a double in 1943, now with Nishitetsu. The team became the Tokyo Kyojin in 1944 and he went 8 for 52 with two doubles, a homer and five walks. Though he played nearly a decade, his career was over at 27 years old.

A light hitter in a pitcher-friendly era, Sato batted .170/.249/.231 with 12 home runs and 112 RBI in 496 games. He later was an umpire.