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Patrick Newman

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1994 Nippon Series

by Patrick Newman (Oct 31, 2009)

I stumbled across this clip a while ago, and normally I wouldn't post it, but there's a personal back story and with this year's Nippon Series about to start, it seems like a good time.

1994 was the year the MLB players' strike canceled the World Series, which I especially hated because my team, the Chicago White Sox, was in the middle of a great season and I fully expected to see them reach the Series. Chicago doesn't win in baseball very often, and I felt like we were getting screwed out of the best team that had come along to that point in my lifetime.

So with no World Series, Chicago's local cable sports station, SportsChannel, broadcast the Japan Series on tape delay, with the games called by Hawk and Wimpy. To that point, just about everything I knew about Japan came by way of Nintendo, and Japanese baseball was something new to me. It was familiar but different, it kind of looked like the SF Giants playing the KC Royals. The only players I knew were Dan Gladden and Mike Pagliarulo, though Henry Cotto also appears in this clip.

[Video]

So this is what piqued my interest in Japanese baseball, but I didn't really get into it permanently until 2000, when I went I went to Japan as an exchange student. And of course the White Sox won the World Series in 2005, which made up for the missed opportunity in '94.


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