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訃報・関口清治さん死去

西鉄ライオンズ全盛期の主力打者として活躍し、引退後は指導者としてバファローズの監督も務められた関口清治さんが亡くなられました

稲尾さんのコメント

関口さんは台湾出身、ジャイアンツに入団しますが故障で退団して社会人野球・別府星野組へ入団します。
ここで知り合ったのが監督兼選手の西本幸雄さん。この時の出会いが、西本一家の番頭・関口さんのスタートだったのでしょうか。
別府星野組は1949年の都市対抗野球でエース・荒巻投手の活躍で優勝します。
ちょうどプロ野球が翌年からセ・パ2リーグに分裂するときであり、主力選手もプロへ。関口さんは西日本パイレーツ(翌年に西鉄クリッパーズと合併して西鉄ライオンズとなる)へ入団します。

ライオンズでは主に5番あたりを任せられる勝負強い打者だったようです(現役時代はまったくわかりません、生まれる前でしたので)
中西さんや豊田さんが返しきれなかったランナーを返す勝負強い選手だったのでしょうか。

引退後の関口さんは、ライオンズのコーチだった一時期をのぞき、ブレーブス・バファローズで監督として弱いチームを勝てるチームに育てようと苦闘する西本さんをコーチとして支えてこられました。西本監督がバファローズの監督を退かれた後、82年から2年間バファローズの監督にも就任されています。何となく、【コーチとしての長年の功労に報いるため】とか、【偉大な西本さんの後なので波風の立たない人を選んだ】のような声が流れていましたが、忘れられない関口監督の大仕事がありました。

前年、主に代走と守備固めながら77試合に出場して11盗塁の記録を残した、身長170センチに満たない小柄な2年目の内野手を開幕レギュラーに抜擢しました。打てない日々が続いても、平野さんの後の2番セカンドで使い続けた選手はやがて期待に応え、129試合に出場して47盗塁の記録を残します。翌年には【世界の福本豊】を退けて盗塁王のタイトルを獲得。通算1892試合に出場する選手に成長しました。
日本を代表する内野手、身長の無い野球少年のお手本である大石大二郎さんは、関口さんがおられなかったら代走屋で終わっていたかも…と思うことがあります。

天国でのんびりと野球を楽しんでください
ご冥福をお祈り申し上げます

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妃垣俊吾さん
ようこそお越しくださいましたm(_ _)m
私もkaneさんの所でお名前は拝見しておりました

【いつまでも~】は、攻撃の柱は金本、守備の要は矢野と最年長選手ばかり。オマケに今年は先発投手で一番頼りになるのが最年長の下柳…このままでは一気にダメになるのは目に見えています。幸い、苦し紛れの起用と矢野のケガという要素はあったものの、狩野が出てきてくれました。林もレギュラーがサマになってきました。上手く世代交代出来たらと思います。

関口さんの時代の選手は、戦争で物が不足している中で『とにかく野球をやりたい』と頑張って来られた世代です。この方たちが頑張ってこられたからこそ、高度経済成長とON時代を迎えることが出来たのだと思ってます。

お時間がありましたら、時々遊びに来て下さい
よろしくお願いします

Posted by: シルク@仕事中 | June 13, 2007 at 12:15 PM

はじめまして。お名前はこれまでも拝見していたのですが、きれいなブログですね。「いつまでも いると思うな アニキ矢野」。その通りですね。阪神ファンの気持ちがにじみ出ているなぁって思いました。関口さん、寂しいですね。またお1人、野球を愛されていた方が…。懐かしく読ませていただきました。ありがとうございます。また来ます。今後ともよろしくお願いします。

Posted by: 妃垣俊吾 | June 13, 2007 at 01:26 AM

温厚さでは関根潤三さんに通じるものがありますね

『やる』と決めたら止まらない西本さんと温厚な関口さん、2人合わせてちょうどエエ感じやったのではないかと想像します
ノンプロでのたった1年が指導者としての長い活躍につながるのですから、人間の縁は不思議ですね

亡くなられた原因は…
年を取るってそういうことなのですね

Posted by: シルク@仕事中 | June 12, 2007 at 12:00 PM

お亡くなりになった原因を聞くと、なんとも・・・

しかしまあ、極めて温厚そうな方でしたね。
現場を退いた後、福岡で解説をされてましたが、
【この人は、部下を叱った事がないのじゃなかろうか】とも思えるような温厚さ。

確かに、バファローズでの2年間の監督時代は、特筆すべきものはなかったですな。
印象的に、タイガースの後藤クマさんとオーバーラップします。

Posted by: スチャラカ次長 | June 11, 2007 at 07:20 PM

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