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Not Prince Hamlet

"Full of high sentence, but a bit obtuse."

Globalization and Baseball

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

NPH has written before about globalization and sports, reviewing Franklin Foer's book, How Soccer Explains The World. Watching an evening of World Baseball Classic games, I have to wonder if Foer would glean any globalization insights from this inagural gathering of Americans, Koreans, Japanese, Cubans, Puerto Ricans, et al.

Cultural differences have been apparent, I think, in the somewhat reckless swagger of the Cubans, the stoic magnanimity of the Japanese, the pinache of the Dominicans, the meticulous fundamental play of the Koreans, and the blaise indifference of the Americans. Perhaps that's painting with a broad brush (it certainly is), but it's one of the great things, however you take it, about an event like this. And while it's the kind of thing you would see in an amateur competition, the fact that these players are professionals in Major League Baseball and in their respective countries makes the cultural aspects of it only that much more interesting.

I sincerely hope this thing sticks. And, as much as I want Korea to beat Japan tonight (which will allow the Americans to advance to the finals with a win over Mexico tomorrow), part of me things the finals will be more entertaining without the Americans; they are certainly the least interested and least invested team in the tournament, even though, on paper, they may be the most talented. Although they've lost twice; Korea and the Dominican Republic are undefeated.

Suffice it to say: NPH is a big, big fan of the World Baseball Classic.
posted by Not Prince Hamlet, 8:44 PM

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