December 29, 2006


Imports face a barrier: Sox’ communication key (Jeff Horrigan, December 29, 2006, Boston Herald)

Gabe Kapler doesn’t claim to be Siskel, Ebert, Lyons or Shalit, but the former Red Sox [team stats] outfielder has a bit of advice for Daisuke Matsuzaka’s and Hideki Okajima’s new teammates, as well as anyone else who will be dealing with the high-profile, Japanese imports:

Rent “Mr. Baseball” and “Lost in Translation” before spring training. [...]

“I know it sounds stupid . . . but I recommend that everyone watch those movies to understand what they’re going through,” said Kapler, who recently retired as a player to become manager of the Sox’ Single-A Greenville Drive. “I watched ‘Mr. Baseball’ before I went over, and that helped a lot. It explained a lot about the respect and saving-face issues, which are so important over there.

“I didn’t watch ‘Lost in Translation’ until I got back, but I wish I had because it’s even better. The scenes where (Murray is) working with a translator and the words coming out of his mouth aren’t the same as the ones coming out of his translator’s mouth are so true. It’s absolutely like that. I think anyone who has seen (both movies) will understand what these guys are going to be going through a lot more.”

Former Red Sox infielder Lou Merloni said communication and culture were the biggest obstacles he had to overcome when he played for the Yokohama Bay Stars of the Japanese Central League in 2000.

“When it comes to the game itself, (Matsuzaka) won’t need to make many adjustments because he’s just that good,” he said. “Communication will be the key. Hopefully, they’ll give him a good interpreter who knows what’s going on, because that can make all the difference in the world.”

Posted by Orrin Judd at December 29, 2006 12:00 AM

Yanksfan vs. Soxfan blog had a haiku contest.

Here are the finalists

While I enjoyed this one:

Dice-K's tummy growls...
too thick and milky! Chowdah
isn't miso-based.

I think I'll have to go with either:

Fenway, D-Mat deals
An autumnal Jeter jolt
Nation weeps again

or maybe:

D-Mat April Throes
The Bomber lineup explodes
“Me miss Tuffy Rhodes”

Posted by: Jim in Chicago at December 29, 2006 11:23 PM