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Email - 8/25/10

Friends and Family -

All Ė

My last Japanese Baseball email before I head out. Iíll be leaving next Wednesday for the big trip. Thanks for reading along.

The Japanese baseball season is played very similarly to the MLB season:

In 2010, first game was 3/20 and it looks like last game of the season is 9/26

For the most part (not always) Mondays seem to be a day off

There was a break from 6/14 Ė 6/17 Ė Perhaps thatís their All Star festivities

News Flash:

TOKYO - Japanese baseball has finally decided to have one official ball supplier, Mizuno, for next season.

Nippon Professional Baseball's executive committee said Monday all 12 clubs think Mizuno is better than three other ball manufacturers in terms of production and supply.

Japanese baseball is using four different kinds of baseballs this season.

In January, reform-minded NPB commissioner Ryozo Kato proposed using one kind as in the major leagues.

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Additional things Iíll try to find out while Iím there:

Is the home dugout always on the first base or third base side?

Is there a dirt path from the pitcherís mound to home plate (like Comerica Park or Chase Field)?

Are the bullpens on the field or behind the outfield wall or something else?

Are all games televised? I would assume so. Are the games televised nationally or regionally? What are the television rules/controls?

I wonder what the Japanese National Anthem sounds like and is it sung at ballgames?

Is there a 7th inning stretch?

Wish me a safe trip. Iíll get in touch when I get back. Meg

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