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Katsuya Nomura: Mini Special on Hodo Station (TV Asahi) from Tuesday evening

by on Sep.23, 2009 @ 9:23 am, under NPB

I missed out on most of the special (it aired last night on Hodo Station), but based on what I could gather, it was about Katsuya Nomura's teaching methods.  Kazushige Nagashima was the person doing the interview, which made things even more interesting because Nagashima played under Nomura and once had a 1-on-1 session with him that lasted two and a half hours.

In any case, the gist I got was that Nomura really loves his players and that the reason why he holds these long sessions with his players before, during, and after games is because he wants to impart some of his experiences and wisdom onto them.  Sometimes, this can turn into a scolding or a lashing out in public, but all of it is done based on his love for his players.

(Japanese culture is ALL about tough love.)

During the program, they also mentioned Daisuke Kusano as being one of Nomura's "projects."

Prior to being drafted in the 8th round by the Eagles in 2005, Kusano was essentially a journeyman player making the rounds in the Industrial League (he played on three different Industrial League teams and was 29 when the Eagles drafted him).  Nomura apparently took him under his wing and worked on getting Kusano to move away from his power approach at the plate, to a more conservative, "make good contact" mentality.  Whether or not that's the cause of his success so far, remains to be seen, but Kusano believes that the coaching he has received from Nomura has helped him grow.

Kusano also mentioned that Nomura made him think about the concept of lead role player vs supporting role player and being able to identify which group one belongs to.  Kusano had a hard time adjusting to the idea that he was a supporting role player, but over time came to accept the role as it allowed him to play at his best.

(Being a support player isn't a bad thing because it can take the pressure off a player and allow them to play at their own pace.)

The program also touched on Nomura's desire to stay in uniform by continuing to manage:

"When people ask me what baseball is, I can't really reply.  Someone once asked me why I'm so obsessed about staying in uniform and I think it's because I still don't have an answer for what baseball is.  And I think that's why I'm still so obsessed about staying in uniform."

Kazushige drove home the point by asking, "So you can keep running only because you still can't see the goal?"

To which Nomura replied, "I just don't understand baseball -- there's just so much to it."

Nomura ended the program with the following:

"Age is what's forcing me out of work.  I don't want people to judge my ability to work on my age.

"[It should be...]  Ability over wisdom.  Ability over age."

3 comments on “Katsuya Nomura: Mini Special on Hodo Station (TV Asahi) from Tuesday evening

  1. Squampton

    Interesting read, especially the part about Kusano, he’s been a big part of the Eagles’ good fortunes this season. He also went 4 for 4 the first game I saw Rakuten win, so he’s a favourite of mine as well. The way Nomura has whipped this team into shape, especially after getting blown away in interleague play… I’d like to see him come back for another year. I actually think that the Eagles may regress next year with a new manager at the helm.

    By the way, I’d love it if you checked out a little project I’m working on, and give me any feedback. It’s still not all up an running, but there should be at least one post worth a browse.

    http://squampton.ca/eagles

    Go Eagles!

    1. Gen Post author

      Looking good Squampton. I think you’re off to a solid start. If you need any help, feel free to drop me a line.

      BTW: I noticed you included me in your blogroll. I’ve gone ahead and added you to mine as well.

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