Puhleeze. All teams fought and played hard. Do not even try to take anything away from these kids. Baseball is a kids’ game and if you ask me, it should stay that way. Congrats to each and every kid who play in these tournaments.
Although I am more of a fan than an expert on LL, I would not use the words “sign stealing”. A runner on second is allowed to motion where the catcher and his/her mitt is set. Therefore you will see the runner motioning to the right/left and low/high but never a curve ball, fast ball, knuckle ball, etc. I really think “sign stealing” is used incorrectly here.
In Japan, there are 2 types of baseball: koushiki (hardball) and nanshiki (rubber ball). Most cities and towns will have at least one koushiki bball team but you will find even several nanshiki bball teams in just one small district. The teams that are allowed to play in this tourney are the koushiki bball teams. The koushiki teams have tryouts and are for the kids who want to play “serious” ball. Most nanshiki teams are open for every kid. Please do not get me wrong. There are many very good players in the nanshiki leagues but for the most part, the koushiki leagues have the better players. (I have seen some very good nanshiki teams that would wipe floors with koushiki teams.) There are way many more hardball teams in the US than in Japan.
To add, players in Japan do practice all year round. Are they better? Hard to say. But these J-teams are built for these tournaments. In a baseball tournament such as the LLWS the team with the least errors usually will win. J-players practice to minimize errors and play the game to not lose. It definitely is a different mindset. I will not say “better”. I will say “different”.
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The average is 4 man? I am the breadwinner of my family and I give myself 2.5 to 3 man every month. The rest goes to family. My wife is the one who does all the calculating and balancing because she is more in touch with what is needed for the home/family/kids/education/savings/etc. Thing is that we go over all that together so we know where the money goes (or doesn't go). I would love to give myself 4 man every month but I know that the extra 1 man is needed for the home or whatever.
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They should have dropped Hara instead of catching him. Hara could so easily have lost that game today with his eccentric and biased decisions.
Nah northlondon. They should have dropped him for the fact that he manages the blasted Kyojin. But Hara's inept managing aside, that was a heck of a game.
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What an ending. Great thrilling game by two great teams. They deserved to play each other and they both showed so much passion throughout. Congrats to both teams for showing their stuff. Especially Korea. They refused to lie down and they pushed Japan to the limit. I hope the Koreans are proud of their team.
One thing about Ichiro. His last at-bat was genius. He fouled anything that he didn't like or thought was going to be called for a strike and just waited for the right pitch. When he got it, he placed it where he wanted: right over second base. After that 7th pitch, the manager should have had him intentionally walked. It was clear that Ichiro was seeing the ball well. I am sure Mariners fans want to see "that" Ichiro from hereon.
Also, there were very many questionable calls including an erratic strike zone by the umps but both the bad calls and good calls went to both teams. But you have to give much credit to the players and coaches for restraining themselves. Although the umps did do a pretty good job overall, the bad calls is something that will be addressed for future WBC tournaments.
About baseball teams lining up and congratulating the other team, that does not happen all that much in the pro leagues. It is a war out on the field and winner takes all. It is so rare that there was a big write up on it when it did happen. If I recall correctly, it was the St. Louis Cards that shook hands with the Dodgers after a playoff series that was won by the Cards. Can’t remember but if someone does, please correct me if I am wrong.
As for all the whiners, methinks its just sour grapes. An above poster complained about the hands to the leg when he slid into second. Yes, a bit out of the ordinary but would you rather have him slide into the second baseman cleats up like most do in the MLB? I don’t remember the second baseman even getting knocked over. That is baseball. They teach you to break up the double play. BTW, the second baseman did complete the double play so...
And Johjima’s bat incident? He did get thrown out of the game didn’t he? Why even bring it up as an argument? Obviously it was him and Japan that was hurt the most by his actions. The officials made their statement in the end. Man, put it to rest.
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