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    1936 Tokyo Giants Team Signed Photograph. The 1934 Tour of Japan, bringing legends like Ruth, Gehrig and Foxx to the Land of the Rising Sun, resulted in an explosion of interest in the American national pastime, and it was that year that the most decorated Japanese baseball team was founded. This remarkable 8x10" photograph captures that squad in the third season of existence, one of the earliest and finest relics of the Tokyo (or Yomiuri) Giants known.

    Stamped on reverse by "Haas-Schreiner Photo," the image is signed by twenty-two: (American) Victor Starfin, and Toshidide Hatafuku, Kenichi Aoshiba, Eiji Sawamura, Fujio Nagasawa, Haruyasu Nakajima, Osamu Tsutsui, Takeshi Nakayama, Tamotsu Uchibori, Seiichi Hayashi, Shigeru Mizuhara, Nobuo Kura, Katsumi Shiraishi, Shiro Tsuda, Takeo Tabe and Eiichiro Yamamoto. The inscription is in the hand of Sotaro Suzuki, Japanese sportswriter and translator for the 1934 American tourists.

    But perhaps most notable is Eiji Sawamura, the high school pitcher who struck out Ruth, Gehrig and Foxx in succession in '34. Manager Connie Mack was so impressed by Sawamura that he attempted to sign him to a Major League contract, but the youngster demurred, unwilling to leave his home. Saldy, Sawamura would perish in World War II, but he was immortalized in the Japanese Baseball Hall of Fame in 1959, and the Japanese equivalent to the Cy Young Award bears his name.

    The photo survives in extraordinary NRMT condition, with only the American's signature falling below the 9+/10 average. An absolute treasure of the early Japanese game. Full LOA from James Spence Authentication.

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    Auction Dates
    May, 2016
    12th-14th Thursday-Saturday
    Internet/Mail Bids: 13
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