more foreign flavor
If memory serves me correctly, the 1990s were a time of great turmoil in Major League Baseball, particularly among its fans. The players strike drove fans away, but the home run race of 1998 won fans back in even greater numbers, while Craig Biggio's 34 plunk year of 1997 was largely ignored. But, perhaps the most impressive competitive feat of the decade was not accomplished in the Astrodome or Busch Stadium, but in what may be the most famous competitive arena in Japan. Not the Tokyo Dome, or any of the Olympic venues at Nagano, but Kitchen Stadium - where Iron Chef Chen Kenichi compiled a record of 4-1 on days when Craig Biggio got hit by a pitch. While Iron Chef Hiroyuki Sakai's overall record of 70-15-1 is more impressive than Chen Kenichi's career mark of 67-22-3 in Chairman Kaga's culinary competitions, Iron Chef Sakai was 0-1 on dates of Biggio plunkings.
According to data gathered from The Iron Chef Database, Craig Biggio has been hit by a pitch 15 times on dates when Iron Chef did battle in Kitchen Stadium. 10 have come on dates when the Iron Chef was judged victorious, and 5 plunks were on dates when the Challenger won the people's ovation and fame forever.
Biggio batted .317 with 15 home runs and 91 runs scored on days when the Iron Chef won, but when they lost he batted .298, with 4 homers and 25 runs scored.
Biggio has been plunked the most, 8 times, on days when Chen Kenichi was chosen to do battle - 6 when the Iron Chef won, and 2 when he was defeated. On dates when Iron Chef Chen battled, Biggio batted .386 with 4 homers and 26 runs scored on dates of Iron Chef wins, and just .278 with 1 homer and 7 runs scored when the challenger won. In contrast, when Iron Chef Sakai won, Biggio batted .280 with no plunks, 3 homers and 27 runs scored, but when Hiroyuki Sakai lost, Biggio's average was raised to .348, with 2 plunks, 1 homer and just 8 runs scored.
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Biggio was hit twice on the dates of "Beef Cheek Meet Battle", "Bird's Nest Battle", "Black Pig Battle" and "Konnyaku Battle". He was hit once on the dates of "Matsutake Mushroom Battle", "Sea Urchin Battle", "Yogurt Battle", "Cabbage Battle", "Hamaguri Clam Battle", "Anago Eel Battle" and "Avocado Battle".
Former Mariners pitcher Kaz Sasaki was once a guest judge on Iron Chef, but he never plunked Craig Biggio.