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Tommy Hunter in Japan


Barnfather

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I've probably missed a thread about it (in which case apologies), but I see that Tommy Hunter appeared last night in the MLB All-Star game against Japan, pitched one inning and gave up two hits.

Nice to see the O's represented, although a little surprised there are not others from the club involved too

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I would hope that one day the Majors and the NPB would expand this from a series of exhibitions (i.e. friendlies) with a hodgepodge of players to a real championship series between the World Series winner and the Japan Series winner. But that doesn't seem to be on the radar. I guess it's all downside for MLB. If the Giants were to lose to a Japanese team it would look pretty bad, and we all know anything can happen in 5 or 7 games.

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I would hope that one day the Majors and the NPB would expand this from a series of exhibitions (i.e. friendlies) with a hodgepodge of players to a real championship series between the World Series winner and the Japan Series winner. But that doesn't seem to be on the radar. I guess it's all downside for MLB. If the Giants were to lose to a Japanese team it would look pretty bad, and we all know anything can happen in 5 or 7 games.

Sounds like an interesting idea, but doubtful the Giants would want even one more inning on Madison Baumgardner's arm either.

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I would hope that one day the Majors and the NPB would expand this from a series of exhibitions (i.e. friendlies) with a hodgepodge of players to a real championship series between the World Series winner and the Japan Series winner. But that doesn't seem to be on the radar. I guess it's all downside for MLB. If the Giants were to lose to a Japanese team it would look pretty bad, and we all know anything can happen in 5 or 7 games.

And then you leave out the KBO. Do you think the level of play in NPB is that much higher then the KBO?

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And then you leave out the KBO. Do you think the level of play in NPB is that much higher then the KBO?

Not to mention then you're leaving out other groups from the Western Hemisphere too.

If only there was some kind of international baseball tournament where everyone could compete against each other. Every few years.

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Not to mention then you're leaving out other groups from the Western Hemisphere too.

If only there was some kind of international baseball tournament where everyone could compete against each other. Every few years.

Absolutely. Maybe sometime in February. There's nothing better for a pitcher's arm than actual competitive baseball before spring training.

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And then you leave out the KBO. Do you think the level of play in NPB is that much higher then the KBO?

Last time I looked it was. But that's been a few years, and more Japanese players have left for the US. The KBO has the opposite problem (when comparing leagues and trying to gauge relative strengths) to Japan a few years ago. Japan had that mini-deadball period where a 2.00 ERA was no longer unusual. The KBO now scores more runs than the PCL, every team has 3-4 regulars OPSing .900. So a pitcher with a 4.50 ERA might be a MLB prospect, and Felix Pie put up a .931.

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Not to mention then you're leaving out other groups from the Western Hemisphere too.

If only there was some kind of international baseball tournament where everyone could compete against each other. Every few years.

There's a bit of difference between a club championship series in early November and the spring WBC that features 3/4ths of the US-based players finding something else to do and the remainders bowing out in the first round.

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They have anyone good left?

I'm of a mind that, at least to some extent, demand pushes the talent. In Cuba (and the DR and a few other places) baseball is one of the more plausible routes out of poverty, and there are systems to funnel anybody with talent in the general direction of US pro ball. So there will always be talent there as long as the environment stays in place. That also tells me that if there were ever an economic market for two, three, five, ten times the number of MLB teams the world could support that with quality players.

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If you get an opportunity sometime take a trip to cuba. The kids there play from the time school gets out until the sun goes down. They reach Gladwell 10,000 hours before they reach middle school. There will always be talent from cuba.

FTFY

Nice to know someone else here is aware of Malcolm Gladwell's writing thought. Great author.

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