Another American Sport released to China
As an athlete (Or at least having been an athlete until recently) And a sports fan, One of the difficult reasons for having finding myself on an extended stay in Shanghai, tiongkok (Setting up sports manufacturing and other business contacts) Is the near solitude from most American sports. Although football, within the last ten or so years, Has become popular among the Chinese people, Baseball has yet to find its way into the sports culture here. While at every school or playground it’s likely there are various some kid aspiring to become the next Yao Ming, Mention the concept of a “ice skating” [url=https://www.bestbrides.net/how-to-know-if-a-chinese-lady-likes-you/]how to tell if a chinese girl likes you[/url] to the majority of Chinese, Even ones who speak not bad English, And you’ll likely find yourself having to read through a phrasebook to find the Chinese phrase for baseball: “Bangqiu” (noticable bong chi o).
I had heard from some of the expatriates living in Shanghai that there was each baseball team playing in the city, So I did some Google searches to see whether I could find regarding the team. To spar for customers against junior college teams. Schools against how the Eagles played, characterized a team that had decent pitching, But nothing hitting.
I didn’t expect much when I went to watch the team play, But I was excited to very much see a baseball field again, being previously in China for awhile, And I wanted to experience the baseball environment here. A Chinese friend of mine hunted down details about where the Shanghai Eagles played and at what time, So I took my wife out for a Friday afternoon at the baseball field.
The old pastime didn’t have any peanuts or Cracker Jacks, Or hotdogs, Or beers, Or very many spectators. There was a mascot dressed in a chicken suit, and / or, Although we had surf behind some buildings to find it, incredibly the field looked pretty standard. There was a total of probably fifty people attending when the game began. People came and went as the game deepened. something struck me was the feeling that many there were obviously hard core baseball fans, The kind you would anticipate finding catching foul balls at a MLB park. After quickly being spotted as one of the only white guys in attendance, I was contacted by Dan Washburn, A news consultant doing a story for Baseball America. During my conversation with him, He told me that he met some older Chinese men at one of several games he’d attended. He mentioned that when he asked them what brought them out to the big event, They told him they played ball every time they were much younger, being forced to leave the game behind when Mao Zedong did away with the American influence during the Cultural Revolution. As for the group of lively, College aged partizans, I was told that a small grouping them attended the local baseball college, And they were being trained to later become pros. (In kathmandu, Many children who express a particular athletic skill are guided down a specialized path devoted largely to an ideal fulfillment of their athletic capabilities.) There were some younger T ball aged kids at the game who were introduced to me by the uncle of one of the boys. He wanted them to practice English with me and my wife, And later the two boys asked me to play catch with these people using the homemade looking, Well used baseball one boys brought to the game.
The area we used to play catch was the same grass area outside the stadium used by the quality teams to warm up their bullpen pitchers. I used the option to get a feel for how well a professional pitcher in China throws. The one I saw was probably firing off in the high 70’s to low 80’s. I watched him throw curve balls with many good movement and change ups as well. His control was much like an average to good college pitcher.
The particular game we watched went into extra innings as the Eagles dropped a large lead late in the rooms. Being distracted by people attempting to practice English during the tenth and eleventh innings, It wasn’t so that the twelfth that I noticed a strange twist to baseball as the Chinese play it. Probably for the sake of ending the game at once, they permit both teams to start extra innings with a runner on second base. One problem I saw with this method is that it made the game boring, As the apparent lack of confidence in hitting on the part of both teams turned the extra innings into a bunt fest. Finally Tianjin broke open and happened to win 9 5 in 12 innings.
through the game, I met some college baseball players who had become enthusiastic about baseball when they came to college. they don’t attend the designated baseball college, So their educational supervision baseball is only extra curricular. They invited me to play along, And I have took part in some of their practices and scrimmages.
On a Wednesday afternoon in May I followed the directions given to me to meet the team at the Shanghai Teacher’s school on Guilin Road. The field in which the team practiced wasn’t actually a baseball field. It was a general purpose field used mainly for soccer and track exercise routines. I have quickly come to understand or know the space limitations in Shanghai, in order to most parts of China, Make it so that hospitals have to double up on their usage. It was amusing to me to watch after as we set up for a scrimmage. The areas where right and center field should be was contains a mix of people, Including a few of our people playing those trade positions, And soccer players who were not in the least excited by what we were doing, Especially from when they were fully engaged in their own game. As fly balls dropped in particular, a few selected soccer players would pick the balls up and toss them back, although some would, With a demonstration of irritation, Kick them aside. great for the soccer players, not one of them were hit.
lots of baseball players were not so lucky. A healthy fear of hard baseballs traveling at high speeds is apparently second nature for most Americans, As if we are born with an knowing that if a ball is fouled off into someone’s face, it will eventually hurt like heck at best. Although most of them didn’t understand what I was saying, I attempted many times to tell those watching the action to back away from the batter and catcher. During one ten minute length, I saw three people get hit hard hard or head by baseballs. throughout the whole practice there were constant near misses as well.
On deck hitters kept with the Chinese custom for preserving one’s place in line by crowding behind the owner in front. That approach is okay for the local carl’s junior. furthermore, merchant push your way up in line, You will find yourself standing in the same place for a long time, With person after person jumping at you. nevertheless, When the person at the head of the line is swinging a bat, a different set of rules should apply.
During the first practice with the school players, I was invited to pitch to the c’s as they scrimmaged. It soon became apparent that there were various abilities represented at the plate. I was reminded of something I saw in trivial League (Where kids are usually just beginning to know how to react to balls thrown towards them) When a particularly nervous batter accidentally stepped ahead of the plate, Opening up the actual ball so that it hit him directly in the stomach. nevertheless I was only throwing about 70 mph, So no major damage ended, apart from the player was likely quickly cured of any interest he had in the new American sport. After that incident the other players warned me when I was pitching to someone who was new, So I could slow it down enough for them to snap solid cuts.
In a country when the sport hasn’t really caught on yet, It amazes me that these players respond so well to the difficulties of learning baseball. It is obvious that a number of these people, girls and guys alike, Have developed a love and even a passion for the game. Before their season started in June, They practiced on wednesdays and Saturdays. Most practice routines last five hours or longer. back then I have participated with them, i’ve come across their skills improve, With arm strength increasing and fielding and batting level of expertise doing the same. but bear in mind, if they can get enough exposure by playing outside of China, they will often just pull off a medal. As for the long term outlook on baseball in China, Comments made by history of successful more experience with the system, As an angel investor and active baseball supporter in China, Give a pretty good take about them. When I mentioned to him that I was considering opening a baseball local store or batting cage in Shanghai, One of the founders of the CBL told me that it wouldn’t be a bad idea if I didn’t mind starving for many years. lots of years from now however, he was quoted saying, A much different scenario most likely exist, With baseball possibly becoming what it is in Taiwan.