Awhile ago, I briefly had some thoughts on how the World Baseball Classic could change and expand in the future. I figured I would expand a bit on that for this, the BASEBALL CONTINUUM 1ST ANNIVERSARY SPECTACULAR (or, rather, the overflow from it). This is something of a lengthy post, so go below the jump for it.
News and Standings from across the wide world of baseball (THIS IS A BIG POST SO THERE IS A JUMP AFTER THE FIRST FEW PARAGRAPHS):
In Asia, baseball season is now in full swing, with Japan, Korea and Taiwan all in motion.
In Japan, home of Nippon Pro Baseball, the standings currently look like this (from Yakyu Baka):
As you can see, the teams have already started to spread out a bit, forming into de-facto groups of great, good and bad. The cream of the crop in the NPB, once again, seems to be the Yomiuri Giants, who have 14 wins, 4 losses, and two ties (there are ties in NPB). Only two teams are within five games of them. The Giants, winners of 22 Japan Series and the current defending champions, have several names that would be familiar to baseball fans in North America. Shinnosuke Abe, the team’s captain, is a long-time mainstay of the Japanese national team at the WBC, and former Major Leaguers like John Bowker, Jose Lopez, D.J. Houlton and Scott Mathieson have played for the Giants this season as well. Hayato Sakamoto (another member of the 2013 WBC team) and Shuichi Murata are among the Central League’s HR leaders.
It’s a bit closer over in the Pacific League, but like in the Central League, one team has clearly gotten off to a very good start: The Seibu Lions. Based out of Torozawa, the Lions are being paced at the plate by former MLBer Esteban German, 22-year-olds Hideto Asamura and Yuji Kaneko, and outfielder Takumi Kuriyama. The pitching has also been excellent, and features 2013 WBC pitcher Hideaki Wakui and a young lefty named Yusei Kikuchi, who is 2-1 with a 1.03 ERA in 4 starts.
Also, some interesting news: NPB will open the 2014 season with games in the LA area.
(JUMP FOR MORE)
News and Scores from around the world of baseball:
NPB (Japan, from games of 4-10-2013):
Seibu Lions 4, Chiba Lotte Marines 1
Fukuoka Softbank Hawks 7, Orix Buffaloes 6
Hokkaido Nippon Ham Fighters 4, Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles 1
Hanshin Tigers 3, Yomiuri Giants 0
Chunichi Dragons 4, Yakult Swallows 1
Yokohama Bay Stars 6, Hiroshima Toyo Carp 2
KBO (Korea, games from 4-10-13):
Samsung 9, Hanwha 3
NC 4, LG 1 (This is the first regular season victory in the history of the NC Dinos)
Doosan 9, KIA 0
Nexen 4, SK 3
Mexican League (Games from 4-10-13):
Reynosa 8, Minatitlan 2
Campeche 14, Puebla 11
Laguna 9, Oaxaca 3
Monclova 5, Veracruz 3
Aguascalientes 4, Yucatan 2
Quintana Roo 17, Saltillo 8
Ciudad Carmen 4, Monterrey 3
Tabasco 6, Mexico City 4
Sources: Yakyu Baka, MyKBO, MiLB.com
Scores and News from around the world (below the jump):
Recent results from around the world:
NPB (Japan- through 11:06 AM ET of 4-9-2013):
Chiba 3, Seibu 2
Orix 2, Fukuoka 1
Rakuten 9, Hokkaido Nippon Ham 1
Hanshin 2, Yomiuri 0
Chunichi 5, Yakult 0
Hiroshima 9, Yokohama 2
There were no games on Monday, and there is no information online yet on any of the game from 4/9.
Mexican League (Mexico):
No games yesterday.
Below the jump you can find the current standings of some prominent leagues outside of the USA:
Results and news from leagues around the world yesterday:
NPB (Japan) scores from April 5:
KBO (Korea) scores from April 4 (via MyKBO):
Kia 12, Hanwha 4
Nexen 4, LG 3
Lotte 5, NC 1
SK 7, Doosan 5
Other bits of news:
Manny Ramirez mania is sweeping Taiwan, with attendance skyrocketing in games where he’s playing. The large amounts of interest, both because of Ramirez and Taiwan’s performance in the WBC, has led to speculation that the CPBL will be expanding.
Jeff Passan writes of the differences between America and Japanese views on pitch counts.
This is only tangentially related, but former big leaguer Luke Hughes has signed on to play with the Subiaco Lions of the Western Australian Football League, presumably bringing his baseball career to an end.
The latest in International Baseball News:
In Japan’s “Spring Koshien”, Urawa Gakuin won the tournament. The “Spring Koshien”, unlike the “Summer Koshien”, is a invitational tournament and isn’t as prestigious, but is still shown on television and is a source of pride to the participants.
It’s still very early in the NPB season, but here’s how the standings there look right now:
In Korea, the standings so far look like this (taken from MyKBO):
I cannot find CPBL standings as of right now- if you know where I can find them, let me know.
Meanwhile, in Europe, Leon Boyd of the Dutch National Team (one of the very few “passport players” on the Kingdom of the Netherlands- his mother is Dutch) has signed with Correndon Kinheim.
And that will be it for today, but come back tomorrow for more Continuum Global News.
In the days and weeks ahead, this feature will be more fleshed-out and substantial, so please be patient as I work to make this one of the spots to go to for international baseball news.
Remember the WBC, and how the leadup to it had the Continuum have all of that news compiled from around the world?
Well, starting tomorrow, the Baseball Continuum will begin a (more-or-less) daily look at baseball beyond America with… Continuum Global News! Asia! Latin America! Europe! And anywhere else!
Starting tomorrow on the Baseball Continuum…
With the WBC over, the Baseball Continuum Rankings have been updated. The rankings take into account both individual games as well as the overall 1-16 rankings that the WBC participants ended up being ranked into at the end.
And the biggest jump in the Rankings after the WBC came in the case of the Dominican Republic. Their eight wins and #1 finish added 90.89 points to their total, rocketing them up to 269.89 total points, putting them in first for in the Baseball Continuum Rankings, ahead of the USA (231.079, having lost about 3 points in the Classic).
The team that suffered the most from the Classic was Australia. Their 0-3 record and last-place finish (based on tie breakers) caused them to lose 98.5 points, sending them tumbling to -28.5 points.
So, go below the jump for the latest Baseball Continuum Rankings, as of March 20, 2013: