Thursday, February 19, 2009


I sent this in as a "sample" essay for one of my grad school essays. I highly doubt that this essay will help me gain admissions to this school (or any other for that matter) because of my amazing track record as an undergraduate. I enjoyed trying to write this, and I'm sure any other fans in the world (fans of teams that are perennial losers) can identify with this little essay. Maybe just the losing part.

Needless to say, professional Japanese baseball is a completely different animal than the professional game in the United States. I won't go into the issues with NPB dealing with TV contracts and revenue sharing; it does not exist, but here's the little essay I threw out.


After initially entering the Yokohama Stadium bleachers, one has to check their ticket stub to verify they are attending a baseball game, not a rock concert populated by a passionate college football crowd. Endless rows of fans clad in Yokohama blue and white cheer and sing along with songs blaring from the brassy sextet buried in the stands upper reaches. Sir Georg Solti of the bleachers, in a dark blue short sleeved coat decorated with flowing Japanese calligraphy gestures wildly, stirring the crowd’s enthusiasm to a feverish pitch, imploring the various Baystars heroes to success with emphatic spirit (ganbatte) ballads echoing across the stadium.

This is Yokohama Baystars baseball.

Yokohama’s starters have their own personal ganbatte ballad and a contingent of loyal fans. Wily veterans, Takuro Ishii and Daisuke Miura appeal to the older fans while new heroes, Shuichi Murata and Yuki Yoshimura attract the younger generation. A voluminous library of music addresses crucial moments in the game covering deficit rallies, scoring opportunities, left handed and right handed pinch hitters. Victories, albeit rare and runs scored are highlighted by the fans belting out the team’s anthem followed by dynamic banzai cheers.

Games end with eyes brimming with tears of joy or the emptiness of another heartbreaking defeat.

Despite a perpetual occupancy at the bottom of the league standings, the Baystars legions of fans remain faithful as they fill the bleachers to capacity each summer. Hopes and dreams of glorious victories and champagne soaked championships seldom fade in these seats.

Looking forward to the Yokohama Baystars home opener against the !$$*&%*$(&(*$^(*&$%(*(^^%^%!^$%#$%$#^&*&%*&$%^&*^# Yomiuri Giants in April.

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