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    Happy Canada Day!

    Posted by japanstats on 2008 July 2日 Wednesday

    モントリオール・エクスポズが無くなってしまった今、唯一のカナダ在籍のメジャーのチームであるトロント・ブルージェイズ。

    7月1日はカナダ・デー(建国記念日)で、アメリカの独立記念日みたいに国を挙げたお祭りなのであり、当然ジェイズのカナダデーの試合も観客の入りが多くお祭り騒ぎになるし、ジェイズもカナダデー仕様のユニフォームを着て盛り上げている。

    でも、ここ2年、何故かブルージェイズはカナダ・デーをアウェイで過ごしている、このスケジュールは球団がMLB になめられているという事なのか?

    今年のカナダデーはシアトルでの試合、ちょっとだけカナダデータッチになっているのが、帽子のブルージェイが赤くなっているとこ。なんでブルージェイなのに赤なんだ、これじゃカージナルじゃないか、と初め思ってしまった程控えめなアピール…

    まあ、過去例がこんな感じ↓だからユニフォーム的にはアウェイで正解なのかもしれないw

    Posted in 01_日本語, baseball, culture, information, MLB | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

    NPB Alternate Uniforms

    Posted by japanstats on 2008 June 20日 Friday

    Following the NPB throwback uniforms post, this time we have the NPB non-throwback alternate uniform special.

    First, let’s just get a general sense of what NPB uniforms look like. These are all the NPB managers wearing their home uniforms circa 2006. The only major change we’ve had since then is the Tigers who are now using their 80’s throwbacks full-time as their home unis (mentioned in the post linked above), great move!

    I don’t know of any Hiroshima Carp alternates, so I’ll just note that that’s Marty Brown pictured on the top left corner.

    Hanshin Tigers (bottom row, third from left)

    2006 Interleague Uniforms can be found from the post linked at the top of this post, they were 80’s throwbacks.

    2007 Interleague Uniforms (designed by some fancy designer… lame)

    2008 Interleague Uniforms (even worse! looks like someone took an eraser and deleted pinstripes from various parts of the unis and added yellow blotches, a much more sensible move would be to use even older throwbacks as alternates since this is a team with history)

    Fukuoka SoftBank Hawks (bottom row, second from right)

    Managed by the flamingo stance slugging legend himself, Sadaharu Oh.

    2006 Hawk Festival Uniform

    2008 Hawk Festival Uniform (both versions suck, this shade of yellow just doesn’t work as the primary colour, SoftBank unis are ugly to begin with anyways, they look like slo-pitch unis or something)

    Saitama Seibu Lions (bottom row, far right)

    2007 Summer Uniform (apparently the red lines represent fangs or claws of the lion or something, ugly)

    2008 Interleague Uniform (stars on shoulders, what is this, an all-star uniform? unnecessary)

    Chiba Lotte Marines (bottom row, third from right)

    Managed by Bobby Valentine. Fantastic fan support, ugly alternate uniforms. Get a load of this.

    2005 Alternate Uniform (black pants and white top!?!? Definitely the ugliest alternates we’ve seen in recent history – polyester heaven of the 70’s and 80’s are a whole another matter)

    Read the rest of this entry »

    Posted in 02_English, baseball, culture, information, NPB, opinion | Tagged: , , , , | 3 Comments »

    NPB Throwback Uniforms

    Posted by japanstats on 2008 June 12日 Thursday

    NPB has caught onto the the throwback uniform craze in recent years, so without further ado here are some unis that made an appearance on the field.

    Firstly the Hawks this season celebrated their 20th season since the franchise relocated to the island of Kyushu and the 70th season since its founding with these uniforms. The Nankai Hawks (1947-1988 ) uniform on the left looks sharp, and the Fukuoka Softbank Hawks (1989-2004) look alright but is way too recent to feel any sort of nostalgia (Kenji Johjima was wearing that exact Daiei outfit before leaving for Seattle). For a more nostalgic look, the Hawks should’ve chosen the early Daiei look complete with the “hawk helmet” (eyes painted on the side and everything). Still, both uniforms are much sharper than the current “slow-pitch” Softbank uniforms. 

    Below are the Giants throwbacks (home and away) that they wore last season as part of their franchise’s 5000th win celebration. The uniforms are from their absolutely dominant V9 era (1965-73) when they captured 9 straight Central League pennants, and captured the hearts of almost everyone in Japan as there were few entertainment options available back in the day and Giants games were broadcast every night.

    In 2006, the Hanshin Tigers wore these great throwback uniforms from the 80’s, which includes the only time they’ve captured the Japan Series in 1985. These were worn in interleague games, but they proved to be so popular that the team has subsequently adopted the home uniform as regular home unis (great move!) 

    Saitama Seibu Lions also reprised their golden era in the 80’s with the blue throwback away uniforms on the right last season which were worn for some special games. Since the team team had a dynasty back then, the all blue look doesn’t evoke possible gaggage, but great memories instead. 

    The Lions went even further back into their history with the Nishitetsu Lions (1951-72) throwback unis this season. They look nice, except for the unnecessary Nike logo (like in the throwbacks above), but since the these uniforms were worn before my time, it doesn’t do much for me other than the fact that throwbacks are almost always better than lame special edition summer/sunday/interleague uniforms designed by some famous designer (which I will get to in a future post).

    Chiba Lotte Marines went throwback this year too with these Lotte Orions (1969-91) uniforms from back in their Kawasaki days which you can see here with Bobby Valentine. Apparently the Lotte Giants in Korea has the exact same throwback uniforms which they wear on occasion. Since both teams are owned by the same Korean-Japanese parent company, there’s a branding effort there (even though the Korean team is supposedly named after the Yomiuri Giants).

    Here’s a great shot from a ceremonial first pitch in Yokohama between the Marines and BayStars interleague game. The oldtimer pitcher is sporting a “that’s gotta be the 70’s” orange-and-green Taiyo Whales uniform! (And the oldtimer batter in the Lotte uni above.) 

    Next time, some selection of non-throwback special uniforms.

    Edit: As reported earlier, the Tokyo Yakult Swallows wore powder blue uniforms from their Yakult Atoms (that’ll be the Mighty Atom aka Astro Boy!) during the Golden Week holidays in May.

     

    Posted in 02_English, baseball, culture, information, NPB, opinion | Tagged: , , , | 7 Comments »

    Shinjo throws out a 90 mph ceremonial first pitch!

    Posted by japanstats on 2008 May 19日 Monday

    Fukuoka Softbank Hawks 3 – 4 Hokkaido Nippon Ham Fighters

    18 May 2008 Fukuoka Yahoo! Dome

    Former Hokkaido Nippon Ham Fighter Tsuyoshi Shinjo showed off his strong arm in an off the charts ceremonial first “pitch”. In this event to promote Tokyo’s bid for the 2016 Summer Olympics, the 36 year old Shinjo made his first appearance on a baseball field since his retirement in 2006. He pitched a no holds barred ceremonial “at bat” against his former understudy, and Fighters leadoff man, Hichori Morimoto. After going to a 2-2 count, Shinjo got Morimoto to ground out to the shortstop. Of the 4 pitches that were measured by a speed gun, the first pitch clocked in at 145 km/h (90 mph). “I thought I threw a little harder” remarked Shinjo playfully, as the crowd was wowed. Wearing the full uniform of his hometown Fukuoka Softbank Hawks, and in an incredible show of fan service, he threw in the actual gold glove that he won for his 2006 Golden Glove award into the crowd after completing this big task. He was exhilarated, saying “moriagattabai!” (“that got the crowd going!”) in the local Hakata dialect.

    (Shinjo’s done it again! He never ceases to surprise fans and casual observers alike, even well into his retirement. I’m not sure if a former player has ever donned the full uniform of a team he had never played for, including cleats, and threw an entire at bat as a ceremonial “first pitch”. Probably a world first by the man who loves to surprise.) Here’s the video:

    Original article (Japanese):

    Read the rest of this entry »

    Posted in 02_English, 03_Translations (英訳ポートフォリオ), baseball, culture, information, NPB, opinion | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

    IIHF Uniform Watch

    Posted by japanstats on 2008 May 10日 Saturday

    The great, the good, and the ugly

    Canada, of course, in a money grub move have new sweaters for this IIHF 100th anniversary tournament they’re hosting at home. Other teams all have the same Nike template uniforms, which are all boring except for a couple of them. Luckily, all teams wore throwback jerseys from various eras, and they were mostly good.

    Read the rest of this entry »

    Posted in 02_English, culture, hockey, information, International, NHL, opinion | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

    Yakult Atoms

    Posted by japanstats on 2008 May 6日 Tuesday

    As scheduled, the Tokyo Yakult Swallows wore their Yakult Atoms throwback away jerseys this weekend as part of Japan’s Golden Week promotions in a series against the Yomiuri Giants. The uniform, being a road jersey, says Yakult in the front like regular Swallows road jerseys, but the caps said “Ya” instaed of the usual “Ys” and the there was a Mighty Atom (Astro Boy) patch on the sleeves. Swallows, in a bit of a tailspin, managed to get swept by the Giants after sweeping them at home to open the series. The unis looked alright, but nothing spectacular. A Kokutetsu Swallows 

    Just as a bonus, here’s the Swallows fans cheering with their umbrellas whenever the team scores and during the 7th inning stretch (Lucky 7).

    Here’s the umbrella cheer song (Tokyo Ondo, a local festival song) in action. 

     

    Posted in 02_English, baseball, culture, information, NPB, opinion, tokyo | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments »

    ホッケーユニホーム

    Posted by japanstats on 2008 April 25日 Friday

    カナダが新デザインのユニホームを発表。国技で何出しても売れるからって、これだけ頻繁にユニホームのデザイン変えたり、サードジャージ出したりするのは、やりすぎでしょう。

    アウェイの赤は好きだけど、ホームの白はダサいなぁ、赤い肩だからか…?

    ちなみに今年一番かっこよくなったで賞はディビジョン I A ホスト国のオーストリア、新旧を見比べれば一目瞭然。

    あと、今年のユニでかっこよかったのがアイルランドとニュージーランド。ホッケーではマイナーな国だけど、見た目はシャレてる。

    ]

    日本代表はやっぱりミズノでしょ、凄いかっこいいわけではないけど、あのナイキ製のででんと日の丸はあまりにもイマジネーションが無さすぎ(国旗そのまんまかよ)でダサダサだったから、それよりは全然マシ。

     

     

    Posted in 01_日本語, hockey, International, Japan, Uncategorized | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

    Swallows Unveil Throwback Atoms Uniforms

    Posted by japanstats on 2008 April 2日 Wednesday

    31 March 2008

    Masanori Ishikawa is delighted with the throwback uniforms too! Check them out at Jingu Stadium during Golden Week!
    On 31 March, at the Jingu indoor training facility, the Tokyo Yakult Swallows unveiled the throwback uniforms the team will wear during the “Might is back! ‘Yakult Atoms Revival Series’” starting on 3 May.

    atoms1.jpg

    Director Michio Oda from the Yakult club and president Takayuki Matsutani from Tezuka Productions were present at the press conference. Oda mentioned that “this is part of our “rebirth of Yakult” promotions, one way to start something new. We hope the fans enjoy this,” then Matsutani said that “this is the 80th anniversary of birth of Osamu Tezuka. We hope that this will aid in increasing public interest in the team and that more fans will come to the games, so we were very happy when the club asked us to collaborate on this.”

    Following the press conference, pitcher Masanori Ishikawa, as a player representative, came into the room wearing the throwback uniform, and he was accompanied by the Swallows mascot Tsubakuro and Astro Boy (Mighty Atom) both in the same uniform. About wearing the Atoms, previous incarnation of the Swallows, uniform, Ishikawa said, “I see that Astroboy is on my left sleeve, it’s a colour I’ve never worn before, and I think it looks cool, and it feels good to wear it. Tanaka, Kato, and Masubuchi all thought it looked cool back in the clubhouse too (laughs). I want to wear this in a game soon. Astroboy has a very powerful image. It feels like we can “go for it!” together with this uniform. I will try my best with (Astroboy’s) million horsepower strength!”

    During the “Yakult Atoms Revival Series”, besides the uniforms, there will be other Yakult Atoms limited edition memorabilia on sale, and special tickets for the games, there will be many other events at the stadium for the fans, including the auction of game worn uniforms for charity. We look forward to seeing you at the stadium!

    atoms2.jpg

    See the Astroboy logo on the left sleeve! The ballcap says “Ya” and not “Ys” as usual. We hope the fans are looking forward to this uniform as well!

    (Edit: The Tokyo Yakult Swallows played as the Yakult Atoms in 1970-73, the team was known simply as the Atoms in 69 and the Sankei Atoms in 67-68 before being purchased by the Yakult company.)

    Original press release (Japanese):

    Read the rest of this entry »

    Posted in 03_Translations (英訳ポートフォリオ), baseball, culture, information, NPB, tokyo | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »