Former Nankai Hawks great Joe Stanka, the 1964 Pacific League MVP who famously threw three shutouts during that season's Japan Series, died of heart failure on Oct. 15, his grandson Josh told The Japan Times

Stanka, 87, passed away at his home in Katy, Texas.

A native of Hammon, Oklahoma, Stanka spent seven seasons in Japan, pitching for the Hawks from 1960-1965 and returning for a final season with the Taiyo Whales in 1966. The right-hander also appeared in two games for the Chicago White Sox in 1959 before arriving in Japan.