He Who Walks Behind the Rows. The Legend of Nori Knuckles

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He Who Walks Behind the Rows. The Legend of Nori Knuckles

Post by FuzzyRawley » Sun Jun 21, 2020 9:49 am

April finally returns to Iowa and the last grip of winter has receded from the farmer’s fields. Soon these fields will be showing signs of life, life that will grow past 6 feet in long, neat rows hugging what little topography can be found here.

What will be hidden by those rows is what keeps GM Webb from fully enjoying the return of Brewster Baseball to the City of Des Moines. But that uneasiness is temperered this year, because this year, Webb has a secret weapon, Norihisa 'Knuckles' Yokoyama.

Webb’s original impression of this unassuming, right fielder from Tsushima, Aichi Prefecture was just that, unassuming. This kid could hit for power and has a cannon for an arm, but beyond that, Webb hadn’t really thought much more about him. That is, until one day while hanging out behind the batting cage that he overheard the Kernels referring to him as Nori Knuckles. Intrigued, but expecting to here a mildly funny story about how he got the nickname, Webb struck up a conversation with Yokoyama on the way back to the clubhouse.

The story he got was not what he would’ve guessed early that day.

Nori grew up in the medium-sized city of Tsushima, Aichi, an area of Japan better known as the home of Toyota (both the company and the city). Here is father owned a small bookstore that specialized in novels and biographies covering history and current events (while it specialized in this, it was its brisk sales of Manga, that kept Maskai Yokoyama afloat.)

While Aichi Prefecture was known for Toyota, the city of Tsushima was known for something else. It was the home of Kiyoshi Takayama, second in command of the 6th Generation Yamaguchi-gumi Yakuza Syndicate. One would think that the smart business move here in a city known for its Yakuza affiliation would not be to prominently display investigative journalism novels on the dealings of the Yamaguchi-gumi Syndicate in the front window of your bookshop. Alas, Masaki Yokoyama was not endowed with the common sense that rest of us possess.

It was this blunder that legend of Nori Knuckles was born.

Nori was just eleven years old on the day that Underboss, Suchi Takahashi and his henchman entered the shop in search of a Manga haul but more importantly to raze the shop to the ground as punishment for stocking and proudly displaying books on the Yakuza. Before they could make off with the Manga and wreck the shop, they were confronted by the precocious Nori and his freakishly strong right hook that would eventually rate an 11 for outfield arm.

This right hook landed squarely on one of the henchman, knocking him cold. Surprised, initially enraged but then delighted, Suchi Takahashi realized that instead of destroying the shop, he would press Nori into service and become the youth muscle the Yamaguchi-gumis needed to enforce youth arcades.

Nori spent the next 5 years collecting Nintendo bet debts and playing baseball when time allowed. It was during this time that he transformed from Norihisa to Nori Knuckles.

Turns out busting heads is a good way to develop a power swing and grit that is needed to make it to the BBA. It wasn’t long before the Yakuza realized that Nori Knuckles earning power wasn’t limited to intimidating 13-year old video game nerds but would be greatly expanded if his dinger talent was nurtured. It was with this help, that he made his meteoric rise to the major leagues and his eventual landing spot with the Des Moines Kernels.

Webb was at first horrified to learn that one his up and coming stars was full of Yakuza hooks and immediately got to figuring out how to keep this story from blowing up. That horror quickly gave way to delight when he realized that if any red-headed, teenage psychopaths came for him from the Rows, he had the perfect right hook to send that ginger back to hell.
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Re: He Who Walks Behind the Rows. The Legend of Nori Knuckles

Post by recte44 » Sun Jun 21, 2020 5:19 pm

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Re: He Who Walks Behind the Rows. The Legend of Nori Knuckles

Post by RonCo » Thu Jun 25, 2020 5:33 pm

Yakuza connection. Hokey smokes there's a few things to do with that.
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