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Posts Tagged ‘甲子園’

So I finally got to watch a game of this year`s Koushien summer tournament and it was a pleasure to discuss the action on the field with the people at the japanesebaseball.com chatroom. because of my work I won`t be able to watch any game at all, I believed, but last night everything fell into place and I was able to enjoy a feirly interesting game, albeit just until the later innings. (more…)

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I came across a few videos on youtube which show the whole opening ceremony for this year’s high school baseball spring tournament at the Koshien stadium. While there isn’t happening that much, the warm welcome Tohoku’s representative recieved and especially the speech by Soushi Gakuen’s captain Shinsuke Noyama on behalf of all the players were very moving. The overall military touch was a bit strange to me, but then again I’m german and I have a slightly different stance on all things military. (more…)

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So this is it. Two weeks of high school baseball have finally come to an end again. And what a finish it was to a tournament which saw a lot of upsets and surprises. High favourites PL Gakuen crashed out early, underdogs like Miyakonojyou Shogyou went deep into the final rounds defeating Chiben Wakayama under the bright stadium lights in an unforgettable game, star players like Hanamaki Higashi‘s ace pitcher Yuusei Kikuchi were tragic fugures in their team’s defeats. It had it all. (more…)

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So after all those games over the past two weeks there’s only two schools left who will decide the champion for this year in tomorrow’s final. The school’s who lost over the course of the competition will support the team’s the lost to and both finalists will carry a heavy load of paper cranes with them, a tradition with the Koushien tournament. They will be sure to try and live up to the expectations of the teams they beat.
And while the kids in Japan were fighting it out another young Japanese pitcher made the headlines across the ocean. Tazawa Junichi was exposed to a national television crowd holding the New York Yankees in check for the Boston Red Sox. He allowed no run over six innings. Tazawa made it to Koushien only once, in his second year of high school (if I read his Wikipedia profile correctly) where he was a relief pitcher. When he became the ace the following year his school was knocked out in the regional tournament in Kanagawa by Yokohama Koukou, a regional powerhouse and the Alma mater of Boston teammate Matsuzaka Daisuke.  (more…)

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As NPBTracker tweets that Yu Darvish was taken off the roster by Nippon Ham to skip his start and to work on his pitching form, the summer high school tournament is reaching the final stages. Out of the 49 schools at the start of the competition only four are left now to determine who will win the whole thing this time. (more…)

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We have already reached the quarterfinal stages of the tournament and things are starting to heat up. It’s funny because I somehow still have the feeling that there are a lot of teams involved in the outcome of the competition, but now there are only eight schools left. Make that six, as two quarterfinals took place last night. Speaking of schoolkids playing baseball there is a nice article about the German “wunderkind” Max Kepler-Rozicky which can be found at a rather unusual place (via MLBtraderumors). I didn’t know the Wall Street Journal had a sports section. (more…)

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Today Germany is awaiting what looks like to be the hottest day of the year so far. Weather forecast predicted temeratures of around 37°C which I personally believe is way too much if you have to work in an office. Still it has to be even harder to play a sport under such conditions and considering the humidity in Japan I believe I don’t want to trade places with the boys playing in Osaka.
Meanwhile Deanna put the 2nd part of her trip to Koushien up on her blog. Some nice pictures there again. Don’t expect her to talk about the weather though.
Talking about the games today saw another stellar appearance by Hamanaki Higashi‘s ace 3rd year Yuusei Kikuchi, probably the player who gets most of the attention and who will likely be the star of the tournament. (more…)

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From now on I won’t be able to write about the games on a regular basis as my work schedule changed back to normal. I had some problems getting out of bed today and I definetely didn’t get enough sleep last night. Still I was surprised to find the last game of today still up and running. I didn’t expect that to happen.  In the meantime be sure to check out what Deanna has to say about her trip to Koushien. She’s also got some very nice pictures there (as always). I think I like the one of those two Nihon Bunri players best.  And for the Inning-by-inning reports go to the always hard working Goro Shigeno‘s site. (more…)

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The nightshifts of the past week finally caught up with me and sent me to bed early last night so I wasn’t able to watch a complete game at all. I sticked around long enough to catch a glimpse of the PL Gakuen game though and I was very impressed by the turnout at the stadium. The game started at 8:30 am local time at Osaka and the place was packed. PL Gakuen is the Osaka prefecture representative, of course, but I didn’t expect so many people to show up at such an early time. If this was taking place here people would still be in bed at such a time. (more…)

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NPBTracker posted a great article about the different approach on pitch counts. Now I have never thrown a baseball, so I don’t know anything about how fast your arm will tire if you keep on throwing for a long time, but I just don’t see the point of taking out a pitcher as soon as a certain number of pitches is reached. Especially when the guy on the mound keeps throwing good stuff. I my opinion you rob yourself of winning a game if you hand it over to another pitcher. (more…)

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