Friday, November 25, 2016

Yoshikazu Kura

Long time Carp catcher Yoshikazu Kura is yet another 2016 retiree.  Kura was drafted by the Carp in the fifth round of the fall 1997 draft out of Kyoto Sangyo University.  He spent much of his career toiling for the ni-gun Carp - the only seasons he appeared with the top team for more than half the season were 2005-07 and 2012.  I think 2005 was the only season he was a regular as he appeared in 106 games that season.  The other seasons that he spent 70 or more games with the ichi-gun Carp he split the catching duties fairly evenly with Yoshiyuki Ishihara.  He was the catcher for Kenta Maeda's no-hitter in 2012.  He only appeared in one game with the top team in 2015 and his retirement game (his only appearance at ichi-gun this year) was rained out before it was an official game.  He was a player-coach this year (he was one of the battery coaches for the farm team) and he will have the coaching role next year.

Kura's rookie card is from the 1998 BBM set (#329).  He didn't have a Calbee card until 2007 (#313) and that looks like the only one he ever had.  He does appear in a number of the Konami Baseball Heroes and Bandai Owners League sets between 2005 and 2014.

1998 BBM #329

2006 Konami Baseball Heroes Old White Edition #B05W038

2006 BBM 1st Version #412

2007 BBM 1st Version #378

2010 BBM 1st Version #161

2016 BBM Carp #C36

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