Only three copies of this card are known in the hobby at present. Kozuru is depicted wearing a Shochiku Robins uniform that was used only in 1950. The card is undoubtedly a first prize premium, originally associated with a the same display sheet as the Fumio Fujimura card of the following lot.
Makoto Kozuru, known as Japan's Joe DiMaggio, played Japan Pro Baseball from 1942 to 1958 with the Dragons, Flyers, Stars, Robins and Carp. He may be Japan's most overlooked superstar batter. He is the holder of three all time single season records, all set in the same season. In 1950, he had 161 RBI, 143 runs scored and 376 total bases. Additionally, in 1950, he hit .355 with 51 homers. Naturally, he won the Central League MVP award that year, leading the Robins to the league pennant. And that .355 batting average was no fluke. Kozuru had batted .361 in 1949! Blank backed card.
This card is in very high grade for a first prize giant sized bromide, as almost none were stored well over the years, and a high percentage have pin holes, creases, missing pieces and/or writing on the blank backs.
Size: 7 1/4" x 10 1/4"
Condition: Would be Ex/Mt to Nm but for staining at upper left, which is noticed mostly on the blank back. There is extra paper and glue on the back because the manufacturer originally attached it to a display sheet. All examples of this card will have such residue on the back.