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A Bridge Across the Pacific: Japanese American Baseball Pioneers in the early 1900s
December 6, 2018 @ 7:00 pm - 8:00 pm
Long, long before Shohei Ohtani and Ichiro; Issei and Nisei baseball Pioneers were our American ambassadors and great Godfather’s to players from Asia today playing in MLB. Their diplomacy, mentorship and ‘pure love of the game’ influenced and inspired early players and teams in Japan, Korea and Manchuko, China. Prior to even Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig and MLB teams, Japanese American and Black all-stars were our ‘Gentle Giants’ for the game and paved the way for professional baseball in Japan in 1936.Described as the world’s authority of Japanese American baseball, author, filmmaker and historian Kerry Yo Nakagawa will present a dynamic look at these historic players and teams that had the ‘tools and passion’ for Major League Baseball, but had to play in leagues of their own. He is the author of: Through a Diamond, 100 Years of Japanese American Baseball.Kerry Yo Nakagawa also served as the associate producer of the major motion picture American Pastime (2007). The film shows the dramatic impact World War II had on the home front as U.S. Japanese families were uprooted from their daily lives and placed in internment camps in the early 1940s. There, perhaps not so ironically, they turned to baseball to help improve their circumstances.