Japan's Sawamura Award, the equivalent of the Cy Young Award
, is presented in memory
of Eiji Sawamura, the first Japanese native to achieve pitching glory. As a 19-year-old
amateur in 1934, Sawamura held a visiting American all-star team scoreless until
's ninth-inning homer made him a 1-0 loser. In that game, Sawamura fanned
Charley Gehringer, Babe Ruth
, Jimmie Foxx
, and Gehrig in succession. Joining the
, Sawamura became their first 30-game winner, going 33-10 in 1937.
After the attack on Pearl Harbor, he enlisted in the Imperial Army and was killed
in the battle for the Ryukyu Islands shortly before WWII ended.