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“Hiromitsu Ochiai as a player and manager,” said a former referee, “it was amazing.” What is the word that you gave to the referee in the fierce protest of the abandoned game? | Professional baseball | Shueisha’s sports magazine Sportiva official website web Sportiva

 Masanobu Sasaki, who retired from the NPB referee to succeed his family’s temple at the end of the 2020 season. He has participated in 2414 official games and has participated in the Japan Series six times. He also played as a baseball umpire, including serving as a baseball umpire in ALL STAR SERIES. He talked about pitchers, catchers, and outfielders that left an impression on him, but this time he talked about Hiromitsu Ochiai, who says that he was “great as a player and a manager.”

Director Hiromitsu Ochiai (center of the photo) during the Chunichi era protesting against Yakult in 2009
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Ochiai’s “Menki” exit drama

I have been sent off three times in my 29 years as a referee. One of them is director Hiromitsu Ochiai (at that time) of Chunichi. I will never forget the Yakult match at Jingu Baseball Stadium on October 11, 2009.

In the bottom of the 7th inning with Chunichi 3-2 and lead, Jamie D’Antona of Yakult flew a big fly ball at the left pole from the first base. I judged that the hit ball had passed right above the left pole and judged it as a home run. D’Antona who struck makes a leisurely round of the diamond and goes home.

However, a problem arose shortly thereafter. A replay video was shown on the electric bulletin board at the stadium, but Ochiai protested that it clearly looked like a foul. I thought he was ready for a thorough fight, such as pulling all the fielders he was defending to the bench, but … the situation was a little different. Director Ochiai told me:

“I thought I’d keep silent because the batter I hit was good, but if I could show that video, I’m sorry, but I can’t help but be in the position of director. But I can’t overturn the decision. Okay, I’m leaving. The rule for leaving was 5 minutes. Please measure 5 minutes. The acting director is Shige (Shigekazu Mori). “

Rather than protesting, Ochiai showed “manliness” in order to keep the place round. At that time, Director Ochiai saved me.

I was sent off and I let the fans explain what happened on the in-house broadcast.

“Chunichi Ochiai has protested against the current Yakult” swing “player’s hit ball for more than 5 minutes, so we will be sent off due to a delay.”

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