Disaster brushes back Japanese baseball
Hanshin Tigers players toss manager Akinobu Okada into the air after winning the Japan Series in 2005.
April 6th, 2011
01:02 PM ET

Disaster brushes back Japanese baseball

The results of the earthquake and tsunami  in Japan have forced the country's professional baseball leagues to make some adjustments.

Opening Day was moved from March 25 to April 12, and some night games are being moved to daytime to save electricity, according to Japanball.com. Some teams that play in domed stadiums are moving games to outdoor venues to save energy.

The Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles of the Pacific League are the only team in the quake-stricken region. They play in Kleenex Stadium Miyagi in Sendai, which was moderately damaged in the March 11 earthquake.

The Eagles will play their first two home series in Tokyo's Koshien Stadium and Kobe's Hotto Motto Field, according to baseball blog yakyubaka.com.

Team owner Toru Shimada hopes to have Kleenex Stadium repaired in time for a series that begins April 29, according to the blog.

All 12 teams in Japan's two major leagues played exhibition games Saturday and Sunday, with proceeds going to earthquake victims, Japan Times reported. Players and coaches stood outside the stadium before the games to accept donations.

Former U.S. major league player Alex Ramirez, who plays for the Tokyo Yomiuri Giants, pledged to donate $1 million to the relief effort. The outfielder also intends to raise money through the sale of special T-shirts and is developing a special salute to follow every home run he hits this season, Japan Times reported.xx

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Filed under: 2011 tsunami • Baseball • Japan • Sports
soundoff (13 Responses)
  1. DerpDiggler

    Oh no, anything but affecting their baseball players!

    They lose so often that they had to use a picture from 2005 to show them celebrating. I haven't looked that happy since the Tsunami+Earthquake combo struck.

    April 6, 2011 at 1:09 pm | Report abuse |
  2. banasy

    Hey, Derp. Long time, so see.

    *Kleenex* Stadium? Jeez, I thought that U.S.Cellular Field stunk. Give me back my Comiskey Park!

    That being said, I think it's cool that they are recovering so fast!     

    April 6, 2011 at 1:53 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jerry

      Could be worse; "Ex-Lax Park" anyone? "Kotex Stadium"?.........

      April 6, 2011 at 5:25 pm | Report abuse |
  3. American Idiot

    It just happens that a structure so fragile as Kleenex is the one located nearest the quake epicenter. So, how long would it take to repair Kleenex Stadium? Just crumple it up, throw it away, and pull another one out of the box.

    April 6, 2011 at 2:12 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Herbert

    Oh DerpDigger the PIG, is back. How nice. I missed you so much, you PIG.

    April 6, 2011 at 2:18 pm | Report abuse |
  5. DerpDiggler

    I missed you all 🙂

    April 6, 2011 at 2:26 pm | Report abuse |
  6. tomcat

    Yep, lets worry about the baseball, Nevermind that country is in shambles...

    April 6, 2011 at 4:53 pm | Report abuse |
  7. VillagePeople

    The chinks don't know how to play baseball anyway ... so who cares???

    April 6, 2011 at 5:26 pm | Report abuse |
  8. banasy

    @ tomcat: Hi!!!! Haven't seen you in...forever!!! How are you?

    @VillageIdiot:Ummmmm...they're talking about Japan, not China.

    April 6, 2011 at 6:12 pm | Report abuse |
  9. raven

    LMAO @ Jerry !!! cracked me up !!

    April 6, 2011 at 8:24 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Gonzo

    Obama doesn't let anything interfere with his golf or vacations. . .

    April 6, 2011 at 10:21 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Jerry

    Hey, if former NBA player John Salley bought a Minor League baseball team he could name its stadium "Salley Field"......

    April 7, 2011 at 1:11 am | Report abuse |
  12. ASIJ 81

    Nice reporting. The legendary Koshien Field is in Kobe – not Tokyo. Kind of like stating that Fenway Park is in New York!

    April 10, 2011 at 5:29 pm | Report abuse |