Japan baseball head Kato announces resignation

Japanese baseball commissioner Ryozo Kato has announced his

resignation at an owners’ meeting.

Kato, a former Japanese ambassador to the United States, came

under criticism in June when it was revealed the league had

secretly switched to a livelier baseball for the 2013 season. The

new ball has resulted in a dramatic increase in the number of home


The 72-year-old Kato, who is in his third term a commissioner of

Nippon Professional Baseball, said he was never informed of the

change. The players’ union called for his resignation when the ball

scandal came to light.

A third-party panel investigating the scandal is scheduled to

submit a report by the end of this month.