Tag Archives: baseball

Little League World Champions…again

31 Aug

The 2015 Little League World Series just ended. As it is every August, it was played in Pennsylvania, USA.
Many times the champion game has been played between USA vs Japan…and it was this year too.

I’ve written a post about the 2010 World Series that Japan won against America. (Click here to read it.)

Japan won the 2015 World Series, too.  The final score was Japan (18) – USA (11).

Japan are the 2015 Little League World Series Champions.

Congratulations to all of the teams from every country! They all played well!

The Japanese team celebrating their victory.

Did you watch the game on TV?  Even better…were you there at the stadium in America to see it?

18U Baseball Championship

8 Sep

Today is the championship game  in the “18U Baseball World Cup”.

18uIt’s called “18U” because it’s for players aged eighteen and under.

This championship match will be played in Taichung, Taipei at 7PM (Japan time (JST)) on Sunday, September 8th (2013).

It’s Japan vs USA.

Are you going to watch?

Ichiro was traded to the Yankees

24 Jul

I’m not a big baseball fan but I have written a few baseball related posts…including two about Ichiro Suzuki.
( Click here to read the post I wrote about Ichiro playing baseball in Japan against Japan…and click here to read my post about Ichiro and the rest of the “Samurai Japan” team).

Even to someone (like me) who isn’t a baseball fan, it’s well-known that Ichiro was a member of the Seattle Mariners MLB team…but that’s no more.

Ichiro was just traded to the New York Yankees.

(Picture from the New York Yankees website).

And, in a bit of ironic fate, his first game as a player for the Yankees is today…against his former team, the Mariners!

Ichiro played for America in game against Japan in Tokyo

26 Mar

The American Major League Baseball (MLB) teams Seattle Mariners and Oakland Athletics (A’s) are here in Tokyo, Japan now to play a total of six pre-season games at the Tokyo Dome.

They’re scheduled to play two games against each other on 2012 March 28th and 29th.

But before those games, the two American teams will play games against the Japanese baseball teams the Tokyo Giants and the (Osaka) Hanshin Tigers.

Today the Seattle Mariners played the Hanshin Tigers and lost.

Ichiro (Suzuki) and the Seattle Mariners lost to the Hanshin Tigers in the Tokyo Dome today.

And then, after that game, the Oakland A’s played the Tokyo Giants and won.

This was third-generation Japanese, Ken Suzuki's (of the Oakland A's) first trip to Japan.
The A's beat the Tokyo Giants in today's game.

Tomorrow, the two Japanese teams and the two American teams will change opponents (it will be Oakland A’s vs Hanshin Tigers and then the Seattle Mariners vs Tokyo Giants).

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(Images in this post are from SeattlePi.com, VancouverSun.com, and 読売新聞.co.jp).

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Let me introduce you to…

13 Nov

I have written a number of posts about interesting people. Most of whose stories are related to Japan in some way.
Maybe you haven’t seen many of them…so I decided to put links to all of them on a new page that I titled “Who’s Who?“.

Please check them out and leave comments to let me know what you think.

The new page is here.

Japan in the Guinness Book of World Records

19 Sep

Have you ever looked through the Guinness Book of World Records?

Some of the records in there are amazing. Like the “World’s Fastest Professional Boxing Knockout” which was dealt by Mike Collins to Pat Brownson with the first punch in their match in November 1947. The fight was over four seconds after it started.

And some of the records are odd. Such as that currently held by an American woman named Lee Redmond…”World’s Longest Fingernails”. She hasn’t cut her nails since 1979 and now they’re about 90 cm (3 feet) long!

I was just watching a TV program tonight about some of the unusual records in the Guinness Book and it made me wonder what types of records are held by Japanese people.

So I checked the Official Guinness World Records website.

It seems that there are many records currently held by Japanese people.

For example:

– Megumi Suzuki of Saitama, Japan has held the record of the “Most Jump-Rope Skips in Thirty Seconds ” for four years now. In September 2006 she skipped 152 in thirty seconds.

– The record for “The Largest Toast at a Single Venue” was made this past June in Tokyo at a Swallows vs Tigers baseball game. 27,126 people held up their drinks in unison and said 「かんぱい!」 (“Cheers!”) together.

– The famous Japanese TV host Mino Monta broke the record for hosting the “Most Live Hours on TV in a Single Week” when he was on TV for a total 22 hours and 15 seconds in one week.

– When 569 Honda car drivers got together in Tochigi, Japan this past July they set the record for the Longest Parade of Honda Cars“.

The parade of Honda cars must have been quite a sight…but couldn’t have compared to the procession of 323 young women in bikinis at a shopping center in Tokyo this past May. They broke the record for theLongest Bikini Parade“.


– Since 2008, Toshie Kawakami of Tokyo has held the record for “Longest Eyebrow Hair” when she had a single eyebrow hair officially measured at a length of 15.1 cm (nearly 6 inches) long.

What types of world records are held by people from your country?

Little League World Series ’10

29 Aug

Japan has become a powerhouse in the sport of baseball.

In the American MLB there are many Japan star players such as Ichiro and Hideki Matsui, the Japan team was the world champions in both the 2008 and 2009 “World Baseball Classic” games (which, unlike the so-called “Baseball World Series”, is a real international baseball championship), and tonight (4:00 AM Japan Standard Time (JST)) Japan will play in the final game of the 2010 Little League World Series.

Just like the World Baseball Classic, the “Little League World Series” is an international championship match for the best baseball teams of boys up to age thirteen.

The “Little League World Series” is held every August in Williamsport, Pennsylvania, USA since it was started in the late 1940s. At first, only American teams played, but in the ’60s it became an international event.
The Japan team took the championship the first two years that the series became open to other countries, and has held the championship a total of six times so far (only America and China were champion more times).

The Tokyo Little League won their game against Taiwan yesterday and tonight they will represent Japan in the final match of the 2010 Little League World Series against the Hawaiian team (who are representing America).

After the game tonight* (it will be nighttime in Japan, but 3PM in America where they’ll be playing), either Japan or America will be the 2010 World Little League Baseball champions and the other team will be second place.
A great job by both!

原爆記念日

6 Aug

Today is the 65th anniversary of the atomic bombing of 広島 (Hiroshima, Japan).

And every year on August 6th in Hiroshima and August 9th in Nagasaki, there are peace ceremonies to remember those who died in the bombing and to hope for a future with no more nuclear weapons…or even war.

But today’s peace ceremony in Hiroshima and the one in Nagasaki on next Monday will be different because the American ambassador to Japan will attend the ceremonies…which will be the first time an American government official attended them.

A photo of the floating lanterns at the Peace Ceremony in Hiroshima a few years ago.

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In other news, a Japanese version of the Hollywood hit movie “Ghost” (that starred Demi Moore and Patrick Swayze) is due to be in theaters in Japan this coming November.

A promo poster for the original U.S. movie "Ghost".

The Japanese remake movie will be titled “Love And Soul” and will star Korean actor Song Seung Hun and Japanese actress Nanako Matsushima.

Song Seung Hun and Nanako Matsushima

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And also, the Japanese college national baseball team traveled to America to play the U.S. college national team.

The U.S. team beat Japan with a score of 4 – 2.

泣きピタ!

16 Apr

There is a website by the Japanese company “Benesse” called 「たまひよweb」 (“Tamahiyo web“) based on their 「たまごクラブ」 (“Tamago Club“) magazine for pregnant women and their 「ひよこクラブ」 (“Hiyoko Club“) magazine for new mothers.

「たまごクラブ」 (means "Egg Club") magazine for pregnant mothers.

「ひよこクラブ」 (means "Chick Club") for new mothers of babies.

Their 「たまひよweb」 (“Tamahiyo web“) website has a new feature called 「泣きピタ!コンテスト」 (“Nakipita!  Contest“)…which means basically “Suddenly Stopped Crying! Contest”.

On this site people upload videos of their baby crying and then suddenly stopping because the baby was distracted by something else…often the baby resumes crying as soon as the distraction is gone, and then stops again when distracted again.
And then visitors to the site vote for their favorite one.

It’s cute.
My kids sometimes did the same thing when they were babies.

Here’s one of the videos from the site:

Click here to see the site. On the site you can click the pictures of a clip from the different videos to watch one…and you can vote for the ones you like by clicking the round, pink button on the right-side of the video.

You can also see the current “Top 3” listed on the site.

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Unrelated, but do you know 吉田えり (Eri Yoshida)?

She’s only eighteen years old. But she’s a baseball pitcher with an unusual style…she’s a “sidearm knuckleball” pitcher.

There are few male pitchers that throw this style, let alone female ones.

She has recently been signed to play professional baseball in the U.S. for the minor league team the “Chico Outlaws“.She was playing pro baseball in Japan for the Japanese minor league team the “Kobe 9 Cruise” before getting signed by the American team.

This makes her only the second women to ever play pro baseball in America…and the first women ever to play pro baseball in two different countries.

(You can click here if you want to read more about her story on the the “Chico Outlaws” website.)

Godzilla in Tokyo and Godzilla in Hollywood

2 Apr

The Japanese baseball player Hideki Matsui used to play for the New York Yankees major league team until he began playing for the Los Angeles Angels last December.

(Click here to read the post I wrote last December about him moving from the Yankees to the Angels.)

His nickname is “Godzilla“.

He is currently the spokesman in Japan for the Kirin “Fire” canned coffee and in 新宿 (Shinjuku, Tokyo) there is a huge balloon in his likeness wearing a baseball uniform similar to his L.A. Angels uniform that has “Fire” emblazoned on the front.
The balloon statue is leaning on a giant can of “Fire” coffee.

The campaign is called 「ビッグマツイ」 (“Big Matsui“).

My daughter had to go to Shinjuku today, so she took a couple photos of this giant display with her cell-phone camera when she passed by it.

Here are her photos of the giant Hideki Matsui balloon in Shinjuku (you can see how big it is in proportion to the people standing near it):

"Godzilla" has hit Tokyo again!

Speaking of Godzilla…this time the iconic Japanese monster called 「ゴジラ」 (“Gojira“) in Japan and “Godzilla” in other countries that continually destroys Tokyo in his countless movies from Japan’s Toho Studios.

I wrote a post last summer (click here to read it) about the numerous Hollywood remakes of Japanese movies…including a 1998 remake of Godzilla that was poorly received by both critics and fans.

Hollywood's "Godzilla", circa 1998

I also wrote a post last April (click here to read this one) about both America’s “King Kong” and Japan’s “Godzilla“…and the classic film in which they battled each other.

Well, America’s “Legendary Pictures” has just announced their intention to film another “Godzilla” movie.

The movie is scheduled to be released sometime in 2012.

A major complaint that many people had about the 1998 American remake of “Godzilla” was that both the storyline as well as the appearance of the monster were too different from the Japanese movies.

Legendary Studios has implied that their version of Godzilla will stay true to the Japanese original.

According to their press release:

“…Legendary intends to approach the (Godzilla) film and its characters in the most authentic manner possible….”

That would probably be a good strategy if they want their movie to be successful…especially here in Japan.
Because in Japan many of the characters from Japanese classic movies, such as Ultraman and Godzilla, are still very popular.
Their movies are still made nowadays.

2009 Dec "Ultraman" movie poster

"Godzilla: Final Wars" movie poster; circa 2004