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Thursday, August 21, 2014

Japan Today: Fanatic fans oblivious to sleazy side of Koshien high school baseball

My local sports team can beat your local sports team.

Whatever else you may think, opines Jitsuwa Bunka Taboo (Oct), Koshien high school baseball is, in reality, nothing more than the club activities of certain high schools that are organized into a national tournament. So what is it, the magazine wonders, that makes grownups such fanatical enthusiasts for this “sport” that they want to watch it on TV all day long?

“Reisei ni kangaete Koshien ni miryoku ga nai” (if you think about it calmly, Koshien has no appeal), reads the subhead that follows.

The Hiroki Kuroda story again, and more.

The irrational nature of Japanese high school baseball also provides foreign media with plenty of grist for the mill. Pitcher Hiroki Kuroda of the New York Yankees has related to reporters about how, during his years as a high school player, he was forbidden from drinking a drop of water during prolonged practice sessions; he was forced to take part in punishing drills that went on until players dropped from exhaustion, as well as bullying meted out by coaches and upperclassmen—like being forced to drink water from a toilet.

Upon hearing Kuroda’s tales of woe, one American remarked to him, “Anybody who did that to a kid in this country would be treated as a criminal.” ....

During the 2012 summer tournament, seven players were arrested for breaking into a recycling shop. In 2008, the manager of the team from Shizuoka, which made it to the tournament semifinals, was placed under house arrest for sexual harassment of two female journalists. Although both women, reporters for the Asahi and Mainichi newspapers, allegedly suffered post traumatic stress disorder at the hands of the manager, neither newspaper company reported the incident, so as not to risk tarnishing their status as corporate sponsors of the event.


Greg Franklin Posted: August 21, 2014 at 02:56 PM | 7 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: high school, japan, training, yankees

Reader Comments and Retorts

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   1. Cargo Cultist Posted: August 21, 2014 at 08:03 PM (#4776713)
   2. bigglou115 Posted: August 21, 2014 at 08:18 PM (#4776726)
Instead of reading this I suggest everyone just read the manga "last inning."
   3. Shooty is obsessed with the latest hoodie Posted: August 21, 2014 at 08:31 PM (#4776737)
Fliday Night Rights?

I will see myself, out, thank you.
   4. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: August 21, 2014 at 08:40 PM (#4776745)
Harudu Nokusu
   5. RMc is Fairly Irrefutable Posted: August 21, 2014 at 09:45 PM (#4776793)
This is relevant to my interests.
   6. Pat Rapper's Delight (as quoted on MLB Network) Posted: August 21, 2014 at 09:51 PM (#4776796)
bullying meted out by coaches and upperclassmen—like being forced to drink water from a toilet.

Beats being bullied on film by Kaz Tadano.
   7. Yellow Tango Posted: August 22, 2014 at 01:48 AM (#4776864)
Just as a counterpoint to the rest of this thread, I thought this was an interesting article and I appreciated it being linked.

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