The Japanese Opening Day Chat Thread

March 26, 2012; Jupiter, FL, USA; St. Louis Cardinals first baseman Matt Carpenter (62) makes a play during a spring training game against the New York Mets at Roger Dean Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Barr-US PRESSWIRE

Ladies and gentlemen, Opening Day is upon us.

No, seriously. The first real game of the 2012 MLB season is being played right now. Don't believe me? Turn on MLB Network. See?

That's right; it's Japanese Opening Day! Concocted by major league baseball to even further water down a product that needed no help!

Here's the thing: I really like Japanese baseball. I do. I'll actually watch NPB games, even though I only actually catch one word in five the announcers are saying. (And, thanks to my fascination with Japanaese anime, most of what I do understand comes in those odd occasions when the announcers are describing a hitter entering some sort of super-powerful glowing fire form, which isn't all that common. More common than in American baseball, sure, but still not the most regular of occurences.) Speaking of anime, I just finished watching the final episode of a horror series new this season called Another. Really excellent, and this is coming from a usual non-fan of most horror.

Wait, what was I talking about? Oh, that's right, the Japanese Opening Day thing. See, I like Japanese baseball. And I think it's really cool that MLB is doing some things to foster interest between the leagues. But what I object to is having the first games of the baseball season taking place a week before Opening Day, several thousand miles away, at seven o' clock in the morning. Baseball's Opening Day, that orgasmic marathon of long-awaited games from morning 'til night, is one of the most special days on the sporting calendar. For some reason, though, baseball is obsessed with destroying what is great about itself by attempting to remake itself to compete with football; constant publicity grabs and goofy rules changes. Like Kate Winslet trying to one-up Kate Moss by losing 30 pounds, you only end up with a watered-down, unappealing version of what was once great -- no, not great; far greater -- all on its own merits. But I digress.

Point is, I like the World Series playing the one game before official Opening Day. But please, can we stop playing weird pseudo-exhibition games in foreign countries before the actual majesty that is Opening Day?

Anyhow, I've got a little bit of time this morning, so rather than cook up another batch of draft reports I thought I would do a late spring training/Japanese Opening Day/preseason kind of chat. I'll be here until, say, 11:15 ish. Let's have us some conversationality, shall we?

The Baron's Playlist for the 28th of March, 2012 (click for 8tracks or below for embedded player)

The Baron's Playlist for the 28th of March 2012 from aeschafer on 8tracks.

"I've Got to Have You" - Sammi Smith

"I Miss You Most When You're Right Here" - Sammi Smith

"Dckhdbtch" - Ikonika

"Please" - Ikonika

"In the Hearts of Men" - First Aid Kit

"Blue" - First Aid Kit

"Por Un Amor" - Linda Ronstadt

"I Won't Be Hangin' Round" - Linda Ronstadt (incredible vocal on this one)

"Everyone Who Pretended to Like Me is Gone" - The Walkmen

"Hang On, Siobahn" - The Walkmen

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