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Robert Whiting

Robert Whiting's Homepage at JapaneseBaseball.com

The Chrysanthemum and the Bat: Baseball Samurai Style review

by Publisher's Weekly (Nov 29, 1977)

Digitized by Jessica Suchman and Catherine Nissley.

American baseball fans will find this book irresistible. Whiting has done an outstanding job of showing how the Japanese national character has shaped the diamond game in that country. In spring training, players are put through a regimen that would make a chain gang seem like a vacation. Throughout the 130-game season the two six-team major leagues demand from their members a combination of "fighting spirit" (which does not include aggressive base running or beanball pitches) and traditional respect for authority figures (apologies to coaches, managers and fans are commonplace). Besuboru is truly the Japanese national game, with several daily papers devoted exclusively to it and the TV networks saturated with it. Of course the nation looks forward to the day of victory over the U.S. in a true World Series.

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