Sunday, December 17, 2006

Ch-ch-ch-changeeeeees

I went to a Christmas party yesterday, held by a local children’s English school. I’ve done some work for them in the past, and it’s always a lot of fun to be around kids. They have a refreshing sense of purity about everything. I was making the rounds, talking to each of the children, when I came across a 10-year-old boy wearing a grey Red Sox sweatshirt. It was immediately apparent to me that things have changed.

I’ve lived in Japan for 3 years now. In those 3 years, I’ve seen literally tens of thousands of Yankees and Mariners hats, jackets, shirts, sweatshirts, and other apparel. The additions of Tadahito Iguchi, So Taguchi, and other Japanese players hasn’t really spiked the number of White Sox or Cardinals items I’ve seen, and in all my time here I’ve seen two Red Sox hats. I know it’s two, because both times I did double takes. This kid wearing a Boston sweatshirt was a big deal. I had to ask him, “Do you like Daisuke Matsuzaka?”

The boy shrugged and kind of tilted his head to the side as if to say, “Maybe. I’m not really sure.” I’m sure his parents bought the shirt for him, and I’m also sure that there are 1,000s of other parents who have done the same all over the country. The impact of Matsuzaka in Boston on the distribution of MLB merchandising has split the pie three ways, rather than two. Disturbing.

The most annoying part of the day, however, was not the boy’s horrendous Red Sox sweatshirt. After all, he’s a kid and he just likes the idea that a Japanese ball player is on his way to fight it out in the Majors. There was this 40-something year old guy, the uncle of one of the little girls, who had the damn nerve to interrupt my little self-introduction by asking me what baseball team I liked. I obliged him with the correct answer to which he replied, “Oh no. The Yankees are no good.”

If we had been in New York, I might have put a foot in his ass, or at least replied with a few choice profanities. I’m sure my first words would have left my mouth a millisecond after he’s challenged my fandom….”F-you!” I’m 100% sure of that.

As it is, I was in the presence of a few dozen kids, and all eyes and ears were on me. I just glared at him, and said, “No, man. The Yankees are very good. C’mon.” Nothing more was said, but the two latest signs of change in the power distribution of Japanese fandom are troubling. I’m sure it’s the tip of the iceberg.

16 comments:

Anonymous said...

By Jealous and Idiot Redsox Fan - Goredosoxfrevr1


http://www.protrade.com/content/DisplayArticle.html?sp=Sb096af59-8df9-11db-a8a5-cf001a6ebfa8

Why the Yankees are Sick

It has been just reported that the New York Yankees are discussing trading Melky Cabrera to the Pittsburg Pirates for OK reliever Mike Gonzalez. This is just disgusting. Think back to the trading deadline of last year (06).



The Redsox just spent $215 million this offseason .This Idiot writer and whiny Redsox fan who complains that Yankees shouldn't trade Melky because He's homegrown. Last year Redsox traded their farm and Top jewel Hanley Ramirez and Anibal Sanchez for overrated just beckett. I didn't hear any redsox and yankees fans complains about the trade. You have to give up something good like melky to get something.


My point is Redsox fans should not worry Yankees and worry about their team. . Redsox Fans are becoming like Yankees Fans who wants every high price free agents in the market to be sign.

Paul™ said...

Mike, do you think the change in attitude is a cultural shift or merely driven by recent media hype?

People who quickly change their heroes or allegiances are rarely loyal to that new object of their affection for long.

Anonymous said...

Where in Japan are you? Just curious. Hopefully it doesn't reflect a nationwide change in sentiment.

Mediaj33 said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Paul™ said...

TROLL ALERT

Mediaj33 said...

By signing Loretta . I think Cashman is thinking Phillips could replaced cairo as infielder. Andy can play 1st, 2nd and 3rd.. Canizaro will be backup for Jeter.

Mediaj33 said...

What's news on Julio Zuleta lately? Hey Mike, have you heard anything in japan about the yankees considering signing him. thanks.

Paul™ said...

TROLL ALERT

Mediaj33 said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Mediaj33 said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Mediaj33 said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Mediaj33 said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Paul™ said...

Freaking TROLL ALERT.

Posts to every blog the same stuff.

Anonymous said...

The season hasn't even started yet and the signing of Matsuzaka has already started to pay dividends. Hopefully if Matsuzaka flourishes with the Red Sox, their prestige in Japan would rival that of the Yankees and Mariners. Perhaps in the future, the next generation of Japanese players will start dreaming of playing in Boston.

Anonymous said...

Hey Mike.

I live in the Kanto area and work in Tokyo and don't recall coming across anyone sporting a Sox cap. The Yanks cap is such a popular fashion cap in Tokyo that I don't see it changing much here.

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