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SOCIETY > Culture

Players become pop idols for female fans

  • August 4, 2018
  • , The Japan Times
  • English Press

In its long history, Koshien has seen some handsome, flamboyant idol players who were popular among female fans, and not just baseball fanatics, such as Waseda Jitsugyo hurler Daisuke Araki, Kagoshima Jitsugyo pitcher Shoji Sadaoka and Tohoku fireballer Yu Darvish. Tokaidai Sagami slugger Tatsunori Hara was one of the super idols. Hara, who starred in the three summer Koshien tourneys in the mid-1970s with his father Mitsugu as his manager, became a successful pro player and manager for the Yomiuri Giants. Ironically, most idols have rarely channeled their high school popularity into professional success. Hara, now 60, and a member of the Japanese Hall of Fame, is one of the exceptions. (Kaz Nagatsuka)

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