Above: The Asahi team in 1915 with inset of Steere Noda.
ON THIS DAY in 1892, Steere Noda was born in Oahu, Hawaii. As a thirteen-year-old in 1905, he organized a sandlot baseball team in Honolulu called Asahi, a Japanese word that means morning or rising sun. He served as treasurer, manager and captain of the team, as well as a top pitcher and hitter.
From humble beginnings, Asahi emerged as the New York Yankees of Hawaiian baseball, winning 23 championships, including 17 after joining the Hawaii Baseball League in 1924. More importantly the team, comprised of players with Japanese ancestry, became a traveling ambassador for Hawaiian baseball, making trips to Japan and the Philippines and becoming the first American team to play in Taiwan.