In the Japanese Baseball Card Checklist & Price Guide, Vintage Edition 2.1 by Gary Engel, the JF 72 Lotte Gum set is listed as a set produced in 1952. While we know that many of the cards were indeed produced in 1952, there is now evidence that some of the cards were likely produced in 1951, or even 1950. However, his Sadayoshi Fujimoto card was definitely produced in 1952, because Fujimoto's age is listed as 47. He was born in December 1904, so he was 47 years old during the 1952 season. This is the first example of the JF 72 Sadayoshi Fujimoto card known in the hobby.
Sadayoshi Fujimoto is one of the most successful managers in Japan Pro Baseball history. He managed the Yomiuri Giants from 1936 (1st year of Japan Pro Baseball) through 1942, after which he resigned to join Japan's military effort in World War II. During his prewar tenure as Giants manager, Fujimoto's teams won seven league championships. This period is known as the Giants' First Golden Era. After the war, he returned to manage the Pacific team, the Robins, the Stars and the Braves during the late 1940s and 1950s without achieving the success of his earlier period as Giants manager. However, the 1960s were Fujimoto's personal Second Golden Era, as he took over the reins of the Hanshin Tigers in 1961, subsequently winning two Central League pennants. All in all he managed for 29 seasons in Japan Pro Baseball, piloting his teams to 1,655 victories. This card pictures Fujimoto as manager of the Kinsei Stars. Not too many cards were issued of Fujimoto as compared to most other HOFers because of the fact that he was never an active player in Japan Pro Baseball.
Size: 1 7/8" x 2 3/8"