Game 1 of the Japan Series was called in the seventh inning on account of fog, but the Chiba Lotte Marines were given the win because they were ahead 10-1 at the time. The Japan Times reports:
The game was interrupted by fog in the seventh inning as umpires pulled players off the field after Benny Agbayani’s two-run homer.
Almost 40 minutes later, home plate umpire Minoru Nakamura called the game.
Lotte’s Tomoya Satozaki, Agbayani and Lee Seung Yeop all homered, and Saburo Omura doubled in a pair of runs for the victors….
“It was too bad we didn’t get to play nine innings,” Lotte manager Bobby Valentine said. “[Starting pitcher] Shimizu was fantastic.”
Lotte’s powerful offense had little trouble putting runs on the board, as the Marines reached base in every inning.
Starting with the bottom of the fifth, Lotte scored in three straight innings, taking control of the game.
Good for the Marines. And good for the White Sox in the World Series. I hope Game 2 in Chicago is not called on account of snow.
UPDATE: The Japan Times also explains the frustrations of trying to keep up with either Japanese or American baseball on Japanese broadcast channels. (Frustrations other than the broadcast-channel tendency to end coverage exactly on the half-hour, even if it’s a tie game in the 9th inning with the top of the order due up to bat.)
This is 2005, the 21st century, the age of cable and satellite and, if you are a baseball fan looking to see the games live, but you don’t have extra-terrestrial reception capability, it is going to get worse.
Probably, within a few years, fewer and fewer games will be telecast on the conventional channels, and more and more will be on cable or satellite.
But, to look at it from the opposite angle, it is going to get better. It has gotten better. A lot better.
Go back about 25 years, and all we got on TV throughout Japan were the Tokyo Giants games, home and road, picked up an hour into the game and usually cut off long before the final out was recorded.
Today, if you have the right systems, you can get all six Japan pro baseball games any day of the season, from the first pitch all the way through the hero interview, even if the game goes 12 innings or five hours.
We can also get two or three MLB games per day during the season, all the playoff games and the World Series, live and in English.
What more do you want?