Sunday, March 20, 2011

Koshien High School Baseball Invitational Tournament Will Open on March 23, As Scheduled

Things can't be all that bad in Japan, right? They are holding their annual Spring Koshien High School Baseball Invitational Tournament, as scheduled. The Tournament will open on March 23.

Koshien Stadium is located in Osaka.

The ostensible reason for holding the tournament, instead of delaying or canceling altogether, is to cheer Japanese people, particularly those in Tohoku severely affected by the earthquake and tsunami. See? How these high school kids play baseball!

Cynics in Japan and abroad (like me) think commercialism has trampled even the earthquake and tsunami. There is just too much at stake - so much money for all parties involved, from baseball equipment makers who often supply equipment for free, pricey advertisement slots already sold to advanced ticket sales to prospects of lucrative deals for the players from college baseball recruiters and professional baseball recruiters.

In many schools prominent for their baseball teams, the players are recruited from all over Japan out of best junior high school prospects. (And those junior high school ball players are recruited from the Little League players.)

The team captain of the Tohoku High School baseball team said to an interviewer, "I have a mixed feeling about playing baseball, at the time of the national disaster like this, considering how people in the affected area are struggling."

But he and his team will participate (not that they have any choice in the matter). He said "We will play our best under the circumstance."


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