You may think that baseball is as American as the 4th of July. What you may not realize, however, is that the sport is just as popular in Japan. If you check sporting websites like 918kiss, you'll find that many Japanese people support the game.
Why Do the Japanese Love Baseball?
At first, the sport struggled to gain a foothold. Matched against traditional Japanese sports such as kendo and sumo wrestling, many saw yakyū as a simple field game, not a test of skill.
This began to change in the postwar era. American soldiers started to promote the game and showed that the keys to success were team effort, discipline, and hard work. Thus, the sport fitted the Japanese ethos and became more popular.
Colleges began to field teams to help encourage teamwork. During this time, the schools developed deep rivalries that still exist to this day.
Baseball Games Are Major Events in Modern Japan
Today the sport is more popular than ever before. Citizens support their favorite teams and wear the team colors with great zeal. If you look in the stands at any match, you'll see bright umbrellas, team jerseys, and a range of other accessories representing each side.
With what borders on fanatical support, the charged atmosphere is an experience in itself. The generally reserved Japanese people have fun cheering loudly for their teams. Band music also adds to the festive atmosphere, creating even greater excitement.
For any visitor, the most striking difference in games in Japan is how you receive refreshments. Women bustle around the stadium with bags of ice-cold beer. Attendees need only get their attention to buy refills for their cups.
Every Game Is Important
In America, high-school games are usually not seen as important. Crowds might flock to stadiums for professional players, but Little League games don't attract the same level of attention.
In Japan, the situation is very different. Attendance at high-school games is excellent, and the games themselves receive national coverage. One seemingly "insignificant" match receives millions of TV viewers.
As in America, great players become sought-after commodities. They easily attract talent scouts and stand to earn a good living in the industry.
The Perfect Match
The Japanese appreciate the value of working in a team toward a common goal. Baseball is simple enough for children to learn quickly and teaches valuable lessons. It's also a sport that relies more on skill than brawn, which appeals to the people.
While players must be physically fit, they must also possess the mental fortitude to play their best during every inning. Throw in the chance for one player to snatch a win from the jaws of their opponents, and it becomes even more exciting.
The Japanese people are enthusiastic about the things that they love. They don't believe in half-measures, and this shows in their support of this game. In this country with a strong sporting tradition, athletes are modern-day heroes to whom people of all ages can look up.