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One month and a day after an earthquake and tsunami devastated northeastern Japan, and even as the nuclear threat level at the Fukushima Daiichi plant was raised to the highest level, baseball season got underway in the beleaguered country Tuesday.
While one team, the Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles, who are based in hard-hit Sendai, won’t return to their home stadium until the end of this month, and teams shift games to daytime and try to drum up enough diesel generators for later in the season to minimize the use of electricity, Nippon Professional Baseball is carrying on for the fans and the country. The AFP reports:
“At a time of national crisis, the role that sports can play is far from small,” the mass-circulation newspaper Yomiuri Shimbun said in an editorial, recalling the terror attacks in the United States of September 11, 2001.
US major leagues resumed play six days after the tragedy, with New York Mets Continue reading In Spite Of Everything, Baseball Season Begins In Japan
Filed under: Baseball, Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Plant, Fukushima Nuclear Threat Level Raised to 7, Hope Springs Eternal, Japan, Japan Baseball, Japan Earthquake, Japan Earthquake and Tsunami, Japanese Baseball, Major League Baseball, New Beginnings, Nippon Professional Baseball, Opening Day, Opening Day 2011 Japan, Opening Day in Japan, Pastimes, Sendai, Spring, The Show Must Go On, WWII
Opening Day of baseball began with a moment of silence for the death of…
Oh, Chan Ho Park’s Beard. We hardly knew you. Your life was cut short–no pun intended, this is a eulogy for fuck’s sake–and you did not make it long enough–ahem–to see your first year. But you accomplished great things in the precious little time you were with us. Is it a coincidence that around the time of your birth, The Face That Wore You had one of his best seasons in recent history? We think not. Is it a coincidence that only after you arrived, The Face That Wore You pitched in his first World Series? Nay.
Yet The Face That Wore You never understood your magic. He began to doubt you back in October, when his team lost to The Team That Forbids You. Surely it was then, as he witnessed their beard-murdering faces, one after the other, beating down his tribe with their wood clubs, that he began to plot your end. And later when The Face That Wore You switched allegiances to The Team That Forbids You, he all but signed your death sentence. Is it any wonder that in his first outing without you, victory eluded him? Does The Face That Wore You have any idea that, without you, he’s doomed to failure (in baseball and in hotness)?
Opening Day came early this year for the Red Sox and A’s (Tuesday 3 AM PST, to be exact) at the Tokyo Dome in Japan. Red Sox Nasian East and West turned out for the two-game series, which the Sox and A’s split.
Then he splooged his pants and cried, “Play ball!” in perfect Japanglish.
Ellsbury, who is of Navajo descent, was called up late last year and, uh, performed artfully for Boston in the postseason, swinging, er, a huge bat (.438) in the World Series. During the season opener, he pulled off some spiderman shit in center:
True story: my mom pushed up my birth date so that she could attend my dad’s PhD ceremony. She told a little white lie about being in labor to our family doctor, was admitted to the hospital, and I was induced shortly thereafter, weighing in at a healthy 7+ pounds. A week of so later, I was tucked in the crook of her arm, watching my dad glide across a stage in a cap and gown, christened at the start into the religion of higher learning.
I couldn’t help thinking of this story when I heard that Daisuke Matsuzaka and his wife Tomoyo inserted Baby Dice, a boy weighing 6 pounds, 10 ounces, into the starting lineup on Saturday. Congratulasians, Matsuzakas!
The baby’s original due date had been March 19, the day the Red Sox fly to Tokyo for their season opener against the A’s. “(I)f Matsuzaka’s new baby interferes with the team’s trip to Japan,” MLB.com reported, and with Beckett and Schilling injured, the team would have started Jon Lester in the first game. With all due respect to Honorasian Jon Lester…Jon Lester?!? But, fortunately for Red Sox Nasian, Baby Dice came early, Daddy Dice was named the opening day starter this morning, and all of Japan’s chowderheads heaved a huge sigh of relief.
Was it killer timing? Divine intervention from the baseball gods? I think I’m going to have to consult Moms on this one.
Dude. I watched so much b-ball this weekend, I feel like my eyes are still dribbling. Without a doubt, the most exciting game for me was watching the Houston Rockets take down the L.A. Fakers. By beating L.A., with whom they were tied for first place in the Western Conference, the Rockets also extended their winning streak to 22-0, 10-0 sans Yao, who’s out for the season with a foot fracture. This is the second-longest streak in NBA history. You may remember that I predicted the Rockets, who were in 10th place when Yao got injured, would fall apart without him. Color me corrected! Tomorrow night, Houston faces the Boston Celtics and the best record in the NBA. We will rock you, KG!!!