The 1951 U.S. Major League All Star Tour of Japan was the first postwar Tour to feature Major Leaguers. The marquee names were the DiMaggio brothers, Joe and Dom along with manager, Lefty O'Doul. Other luminaries such as Billy Martin, Ferris Fain, Ed Lopat, Bobby Shantz, Bob Lemon and Mel Parnell also made the trip.
On November 7, 1951, the U.S. All Stars played the Nagoya Dragons at Narumi Stadium in the city of Nagoya. The All Stars emerged victorious by a score of 11-1, homering three times including a blast by Dom DiMaggio. Hall of Fame pitcher Shigeru Sugishita was the losing pitcher. Bill Werle pitched a complete game for the win. The Chubu Nippon Newspaper Co. issued this belt buckle in honor of this game. Chubu Nippon (now the Chunichi News) is a Nagoya based newspaper that owned the Dragons at that time.
The buckle, while it is the first of this specific type that we have seen, was produced in the general style of other U.S. Tour belt buckles that were presented to Tour participants and dignitaries. So we must assume that this item was no mere souvenir, but was most likely presented to a player, team executive, etc.
The words "Base Ball" and the area surrounding the actual baseball are enameled. The text on the reverse side states "Narumi Stadium. Chubu Nippon Newspaper. November 1951."
Size: 1 1/2" in diameter