International Relations

Dodgers vs. Yomiuri Giants at Korakuen Stadium, Tokyo - November 9, 1956

Dodgers Win in Eleventh by 5-4 As Tokyo Hurler Shakes Off Sign

Dodgers 5, Yomiuri 4, 11 innings

Dodgers 0 1 0 3 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 5 7 0
All-Japan 0 2 0 0 0 1 0 1 0 0 0 4 9 0

WP — Ed Roebuck. LP — Takehiko Bessho. HR: Jim Gentile, Herb Olson, Shigeru Fujio.

Dodger Record 11-4-1.

GAME NOTES: Takehiko Bessho decided not to follow the instructions of Yomiuri Giants Manager Shigeru Mizuhara and paid the price. With the game tied at 4-4 in the top of the 11th inning, the Dodgers got a lead-off single by Jim Gilliam and two outs later he was on second base with Jackie Robinson coming to the plate. That’s when Mizuhara ordered Bessho to intentionally walk Robinson. But, Bessho “shook off” the sign and his catcher Shigueru Fujio, who promptly ran to the mound and told the pitcher to follow the instructions of the manager. Fujio then ran to the Giants’ dugout to inform Mizuhara that the instructions had been delivered. Back on the mound, however, a defiant Bessho decided not to walk Robinson but to pitch to him. Robinson lashed a double to right-center field and Gilliam scored easily to put the Dodgers ahead 5-4. Bessho had entered the game in relief in the seventh inning and had not allowed a hit until Gilliam’s single in the 11th inning. Regarding Bessho’s decision, Mizuhara said, “He shouldn’t do such a thing. I instructed him to walk Robinson intentionally but he insisted on going with Robinson.”Associated Press story, New York Journal-American, November 9, 1956 Jim Gentile smashed his eighth home run of the Japan tour in the second inning to put the Dodgers on top 1-0. But, the Giants scored twice in that inning off Dodger starter Ralph Branca. The Dodgers got three more runs to go ahead 4-2 in the fourth inning. Herb Olson hit a two-run home run in that inning. Yomiuri scored single runs in the sixth and eighth to even the score. Ed Roebuck came in to pitch in the seventh for the Dodgers and earned the victory. Bessho had 310 lifetime wins pitching for the Nankai Hawks (1943, 1946-48) and the Giants (1949-57). He won the Sawamura Award (as Japan’s top pitcher) in 1947 and 1955 and was MVP in 1952 and 1956. He was inducted into the Japan Baseball Hall of Fame in 1979.

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