Masanori “Mashi” Murakami pitched for the San Francisco Giants in the mid-1960s.
MONROVIA — The Baseball Reliquary, Inc. has announced its list of 50 eligible candidates for the 2018 election of the Shrine of the Eternals, the membership organization’s equivalent to the Baseball Hall of Fame.
This year marks the 20th annual election of the shrine, a major national component of the Baseball Reliquary, a Southern California-based organization dedicated to fostering an appreciation of American art and culture through the context of baseball history.
Among the eligible candidates for 2018, 10 appear on the Shrine of the Eternals ballot for the first time, including Masanori “Mashi” Murakami (b.1944), the first Japanese-born player in MLB history, who debuted with the San Francisco Giants at the age of 20 in 1964.
During the previous year, Murakami pitched the grand total of two innings with the Nankai Hawks of the Japan Pacific League. Snatched up by the Giants, perennial pennant contenders during the 1960s, the young lefty was called up late in the 1964 season and used sparingly in relief.
As the Giants battled the Dodgers for NL supremacy in 1965, Murakami appeared in 45 games, all but one as a reliever, finishing the season with a promising 4-1 record, 8 saves, 3.75 ERA, and more than 10 strikeouts per nine innings.
In a reversal of the usual path to MLB b