three outfielders are seen in their “ready to field” pose. By 1950, two of those pictured, Shosei Go and
Kaoru Betto would move on to the Mainichi Orions. The most important aspect of this lot
is that the card is a rookie card of Betto.
What’s more, he most likely autographed the card during his rookie
Betto (1920-1999), nicknamed the
“Gentleman of Baseball”, was a right handed hitting, bespectacled
outfielder. Among American collectors,
he is best known as the player whose visage is seen on the iconic shirt worn by
Jeff Bridges in the movie, The Big Lebowski. In 1948, as a rookie, Betto batted
.328 with 13 homers.
as the "Human Locomotive", Shosei Go (1916-1987) is one of the few
Taiwanese stars enshrined in the Japan Pro Baseball Hall of Fame. The tiny,
fleet footed outfielder was often considered to be the fastest player of his
era. In a career spanning the years 1937 to 1957, he played for the Giants,
Tigers and Orions. Go was a two-time batting champion and was also named MVP in
1944. Interestingly, he was also used as a pitcher in 1946. During his one
season on the mound, he went 14-6 and pitched Japan Pro Baseball's first
postwar no hitter!
Kaneda (1920-1992) was an outfielder for the Hanshin Tigers from 1942 to 1957.
A left-handed batter and a fleet footed runner, the 5' 7", 150 lb. Kaneda
put up some big numbers in the late 1940s and early 1950s. He batted over .300
six times. In 1947, he once hit for the cycle.
Size: 4 3/8” x 2 7/8”
Condition: Autographs—Betto and Go grade 8 out of
10. Kaneda—6 out of 10. Card—Vg/Ex