World Baseball Classic Photos: Japan vs Cuba

Totally fried. Many thoughts on the WBC, most positive, but those will have to wait for some other day. Right now I’ll just say that I cannot wait until the next time this thing comes around; I haven’t had that much fun at a ballpark in a very long time.

Anyway, here they are: photos | slideshow

Enjoy!

17 Responses »

  1. Looked like a fun time and a good game until the eighth or so. ESPN came to the game late due to a double OT in an NIT game, go figure. Goff, where are those seats? The pictures look great from there. I’ve sat closer to the field and wasn’t real happy with the view. Maybe I should move up a little higher. Reminds me of the View section at Jack Murphy, $5 and a coupla beers for a day game. Great deal.

  2. Section 300, row 19, seats 13 & 14. They’re cheap and good, my kind of combination. ;-)

  3. Minor aquisition by the Pads:
    The San Diego Padres today acquired right-handed pitcher Bobby Basham from the Cincinnati Reds in exchange for catcher David Ross.

    Anyone know anything about this guy? A quick Googling reveals he was once a top prospect until the dreaded torn labrum. 88 Ks against 15 BBs in 100 innings of A and AA last year is a good sign.

  4. From 7/18/05 Reds notes in Baseball America:
    “Basham, 25, was the organization’s No. 2 prospect going into the 2003 season after he went 6-4,1.64 at low Class A Dayton in 2002. He struggled in ’03, going 5-10, 5.17 at Double-A Chattanooga. He missed all of last year after shoulder surgery.

    Basham, the Reds’ seventh-round pick in 2001, went 5-2, 3.75 in the first half at high Class A Sarasota this season, earning a promotion back to Chattanooga.

    “He’s throwing very well,” farm director Tim Naehring said. “He’s throwing strikes. His stuff is still coming around. We’d like to see the opponent batting average lower. But his arm feels good.”

    From a 11/30/05 Chat with BA’s JJ Cooper

    “Q: Jeff Brown from Chicago asks:
    I noticed that Bobby Basham pitched very well at the end of last season in Double AA for the Lookouts. Has he returned to form of a few years ago as a potential pitching prospect?

    A: J.J. Cooper: He hasn’t returned to the form he had before the injuries, but the Reds were encouraged, as he showed increasing arm strength while staying healthy. He was pitching at 87-88 mph for much of the season, well off of the low 90s he sat at before the labrum tear, and his slider isn’t the plus-plus pitch it was before. But by the end of the season, Basham was touching 92-93 mph again, and his slider showed improvement. It’s unlikely he’ll ever be the pitcher he would have been pre-injury, but the Reds have some hope that he’ll still be a useable major leaguer, as they expect him to show more improvement next season as he continues to build back his arm strength”

  5. I went to the game last night and while the experience overall was good, the game wasn’t. I think most of the blame for the game falls on Cuba. Obviously their glacial pace disrupted any rhythm to the game, both with the time between pitches and the numerous during innings pitching changes (the Tony LaRussa school of managing has spread! The horror!) Only the two run HR by Cuban was following an inning which didn’t take forever — it seemed like their stategy was to make the Japanese pitcher wait forever between innings. I also think the on field baseball behavior of the Cubans left a lot to be desired. They seemed to complain about almost all calls, especially Pestano (the catcher). Obviously that sort of behavior wouldn’t go over to well in a real MLB game. Not sure if their lack of on-field class is a product of the politics of this series or just the way the play or because they are always used to winning.

  6. What was up with someone from the Cuban team constantly throwing rice onto the field from their dugout during their half of the inning? I’m not aware of any Cuban/Carribean/Latin American baseball tradition that involves throwing rice for luck. Actually, the gesture struck my friends and me as pretty offensive, but we’re reserving judgement pending further research.

  7. Ranger31: Excellent question. They did the same thing in the semifinal on Saturday. Was that rice? I couldn’t figure out what it was from where we were seated. My one complaint with the Cuban style of baseball is, as Tom noted, the complete lack of urgency. Do six people really need to touch the baseball after a routine fly ball to center field with nobody on base?

  8. You think it was rice? I noticed it a couple of times but couldn’t figure out what the heck it was. Granted, we were sitting a long way from their dugout and it never happened when I was watching but I thought it was either rice or water. Were they actually throwing it during the play or just between pitches?

  9. I’ve been an Ichiro fan since his first spring training with the Mariners … here’s a GREAT article about a GREAT ballplayer … http://sports.yahoo.com/mlb/news;_ylt=AmA35CME_naYxr2MqJFKaa8RvLYF?slug=jp-ichiro032006&prov=yhoo&type=lgns … Ichiro!

  10. It was water. Out of little paper cups.

    I had a blast all three games, especially Japan-Korea.

  11. Random observations on the WBC.

    Cuba and the DR — I didn’t really have a horse in this race, so it was a pretty analytical observation. Coming up on 4 hours for the game got a little tedious, but watching the pure joy of the Cuban players coming out of the dugout was worth it. Not exactly beer drinking weather, though.

    Japan and Korea — Fans from both sides were great, enthusiastic and loud. Sat next to a Korean fan who leaned over when the Korean shortstop came up and said, “All glove, no bat.” Priceless.

    Japan and Cuba — The crowd was as diverse as I’ve ever seen at a ball park. Chinese Taipei hats, mixed with DR, Mexico and Venezuelan hats. No one knew who was going to get to the finals, so everybody held their tickets (although I think the Chinese Taipei fan was a bit optimistic). I found myself pulling for Cuba after the first, since I have that “pull for the underdog” personality. I thought they were going to pull it off, up until the top of the ninth.

    I thought tossing Sadaharo Oh in the air was an interesting celebration. If the US would have made it, would they have an all-time home run hitting champion toss competition?

    I was proud of San Diego for the crowd turn out and how well the event was handled. San Diego showed why it is a great baseball city, despite the fact we didn’t have the usual warm weather to tout.

    It was water they were throwing out on the field, btw.

  12. My wife, son, and I had a terrific time Sat night at Korea/Japan. We were lucky enough to have seats in the second row behind the vis. dugout, right on top of the action. Also, as we were in the hot spot for foul balls off LH-bats, we ended up with one, and nearly had two others.
    The Korean crowd was out of control, and our evening could not be dampened, even by the crappy weather.
    A write-up and REALLY close-up pics will be at Friar Faithful soon.
    And Geoff, Baseball Musings linked to your post. Cool beans…

  13. Awesome, Lance! I look forward to your write-up and pix.

  14. This [link http://adobe.kodakgallery.com/Slideshow.jsp?mode=fromshare&Uc=bjd2m9d.pxbl64t&Uy=-ehguwp&Ux=0, should take you to a collection of some of the pictures I took from Section 302, Row 22 on Monday. Geoff, you should be able to discern all the rice (at least as of the 6th inning) that had been thrown in front of the Cuban dugout.

  15. Thoughtful analysis by brilliant minds. Nice discussion, Geoff. http://baseballanalysts.com/archives/2006/03/two_on_two_2006_3.php