Shinichi Eto

An all-star Japanese left fielder, Eto hit between 20 and 30 home runs most seasons, collected 2,057 hits, and batted .300 for much of his career. He won batting titles in 1964 (.323) and 1965 (.336). Rebelling against Chunichi’s team curfew in 1970, he threatened to retire if not traded. Shipped inter-league to the Lotte Orions for 1971, he bested American teammate George Altman for his third batting crown – in a somewhat tainted fashion. As Altman recalled, Eto, a righthanded batter, was an opposite-field hitter. With the title on the line, Nankai manager Katsuya Nomura positioned his infield so as to leave the right side open, and Eto went 4-for-4. Nomura had won the HR title over American Daryl Spencer through similar collusive measures six years earlier.