Every culture expects or teaches us to expect certain behaviors in high-pressure situations. In Japan, one gets used to a look of stone-faced earnest-looking seriousness. Smiling, acting loose and trying to defuse tension, while making cool rational decisions is not always the norm.Continue reading Pennant panic
A couple of slow news days and a research project that is failing to reach a conclusion have kept me away for a couple of days. My apologies for that. We did have some news on Friday, so I’ll share that.
Nashida out of ICU
The wonderful Mr. Masataka Nashida is out of ICU and off his ventilator. Hopefully, that means the 66-year-old gent will survive to tell us more stories. There are many kind people in baseball, a huge number of them, and Nashida is one of those.
Kataoka goes public
Atsushi Kataoka, revealed this week that he’d been in the hospital battling the novel coronavirus, speaking weakly like someone with pneumonia — I speak from experience there — and with tubes up his nose, Kataoka sent a video of himself from his hospital bed.
Many prayers for these two guys’ full recovery, and not just because they were two of the people who took this nobody’s questions seriously despite how bad my Japanese was 22 to 25 years ago.
125 games and counting down
On Friday, NPB announced that it has scrapped interleague play for the 2020 season and will not start before the end of May. Considering Tokyo hits a new high for infections nearly every other day and they’re barely testing anyone without serious symptoms, that should be no surprise.
I strongly recommend you listen to next week’s Japan Baseball Weekly podcast, where Wladimir Balentien will explain what it’s like training with the SoftBank Hawks when players are not allowed to interact at the facilities.
And finally a plug
On Sunday in Japan at 10 am (6 pm Pacific Daylight Time) , I’ll be on a live twitter chat with Angels broadcaster Jose Mota and Angels staff member Saya Nomura.
I hope you can drop in. I’ll be on from 10:30 am (6:30 pm PDT) while former Angel and Yakult Swallow Jack Howell will take questions from from 10 am in Japan ( 6:00 pm PDT).