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I asked “people in the middle” about the appeal of “intercity baseball tournament”!What is a drama unique to adult baseball?[Part 1]| SPICE –Entertainment-specific information media Spice

The “93rd Intercity Baseball Tournament” will be held at Tokyo Dome from Monday, July 18th.

“Intercity Baseball Tournament,” the first tournament of which was held in 1927, has a history older than that of professional baseball. Approximately 350 teams from adult baseball have participated this year as well, and it is the tournament that decides the best in Japan.

A total of 32 teams can participate in this tournament, and the winning team from the previous year will be exempt from qualifying, so the remaining 31 participation slots will be allocated to each region. In order to win the tough qualifying, there is a battle for the pride of the company and the team … But what kind of serious competition are the adults who have their main business in there?

This time, we asked Junichi Katayama and 56 Yumoto, members of the Japanese Baseball League Planning and Public Relations Committee, about the appeal of “Intercity Baseball Tournament.”

■ Junichi Katayama

Entered Asia University from Setouchi High School in Hiroshima Prefecture. When he was in school, he was also elected to the Japan National Team at the USA-Japan Collegiate Baseball Championship. After he joined JR West, he transferred to JR East and was active for 12 years, of which 5 years were elected to the Japan national team.

■ Yumoto Isoroku

From Fujishiro High School to Senshu University, then to JR East. He has participated in Koshien when he was in Fujishiro High School. He is currently seconded from JR East to the Japanese Baseball League and is mainly in charge of public relations.

To aim for a draft and give back to the company …

――What kind of tournament is “Intercity Baseball Tournament”?

Katayama: All amateur baseball is a tournament system, so it’s basically the same as high school baseball and college baseball. However, the only difference is that in professional baseball, unless you go to a professional baseball game, your life will end there. Star players who were active in high school and college are fighting for scouts from professional baseball.

――Are there any conditions to participate in the qualifying for “Intercity Baseball Tournament”?

Katayama:You can participate if you belong to the Japanese Baseball League.

――In “Intercity Baseball Tournament”, the players will participate with the thoughts of the company and family on their backs, but what kind of feelings do you have when you are fighting in a different environment from high school / university?

Katayama:In my case, I was studying when I was a student, but I had a strong desire to go as far as I could go with my favorite baseball game. However, in adult baseball, the person in the seat next to me at the company comes to support me, and the baseball club is able to survive with the power of the company, so I feel that I am playing baseball. It came to be. So, for the match, I had a big desire to “give back to the company” and “to make the people and family members next to me happy at the company”.

After graduating from high school or university, the players who are active in the first class are working hard toward the year

when the draft ban will be lifted. After that, it will be difficult to get drafted, so I will start thinking about how to complete my baseball life.

* The ban is lifted in the third year for high school graduates and in the second year for university graduates.

――It’s also a place where you can see “the success of young players who will play an active role in professional baseball in the future.” There seems to be a drama in the place of “how veteran players close the curtain of baseball life”.Katayama:

That is one of the reasons why veterans are attracting attention in “Intercity Baseball Tournament”. There is a 30-person participation slot for each team, so we compete every year. Veterans should have a stronger desire to retire if this year is not good. If you are hit or not hit in “Intercity Baseball Tournament”, that feeling will become stronger.

――How did you feel when Mr. Katayama first participated in “Intercity Baseball Tournament”?Katayama:

I had participated in Koshien, but at that time there was a different pressure because the company came to see me. I have a strong feeling that I fought for people other than myself. It’s a pressure to have a lot of people who support me, but I was able to get the same courage.

――Do you have a feeling that you cannot lose to the same group company?Katayama:

Junichi Katayama

Junichi Katayama

Reinforcement players are the key to intercity baseball tournament

――Please tell us the key points in watching “Intercity Baseball Tournament”. What should I focus on on the participating teams?Katayama:

In order to win the tournament, I think it is important to enter the first match. Even veteran players are nervous behind the bench, and the teams on the waves often win. Also, the team in which reinforcement players play an active role is strong.

――In “Intercity Baseball Tournament,” you can add three players from the team that lost in the qualifying to the team as reinforcement players.Katayama:

If you lose the qualifying round in high school, you will not be able to participate in Koshien, but in “Intercity Baseball Tournament” you can add players from the team that lost the qualifying round and go to “Intercity Baseball Tournament”. That’s a big difference from other tournaments.

――What kind of player will be selected for reinforcement?Katayama:

After all it is a form to reinforce the pitcher and No. 4 which are the main axes, and the parts that are lacking in the team. So, in the main race, a dream team will be realized, with 2 people in No. 4 and 2 people in Ace.

In addition, since the reinforcement players are selected from the first representative, the confrontation between the first representatives who can easily perform strong reinforcement will be noticed. The first representative of the district with a large number of teams is a sight to see as it attracts good reinforcement players. However, the rule is that the team that won the championship last year cannot include reinforcement players.

――The highlight is which one will win, the winning team without reinforcement or the first representative with reinforcement.Katayama:

I agree.

–Are there any advantages or disadvantages in the combination of tournaments?Katayama:

The team selected on the left side of the tournament table has a quarter-final schedule of one day. The team selected on the far right will have three consecutive battles at the end, so I think it will be tough if there is no pitching ability.

–Are there any tactical characteristics of each team in the Intercity Baseball Tournament?Katayama:

It’s a one-shot game in a tournament system, so I think it’s a good idea to imagine Koshien. There are more control-oriented pitchers than pitchers who throw speed balls, and they often take solid tactics. Also, veteran players have more abilities, so the team with veteran pitchers behind is strong.

Keep an eye on goods and cheering

――In “Intercity Baseball Tournament”, it seems that goods are basically distributed to team members, but is this different for each match?Yumoto:

Some teams have their own characteristics, and some have megaphones, team-specific towels, and folding fans. For JR, goods that match the color of the company, such as trains, are prepared, which is one of the pleasures for fans of “Intercity Baseball Tournament”.

――Is the goods the same every year?Yumoto:

There are the same teams, but for example, in JR, there are teams that are quite different, such as bibs and preparing headgear.

――Can you buy team goods in the dome in “Intercity Baseball Tournament”?Yumoto:

Basically, it will be sold in the dome as JABA (Japanese Baseball League) goods.

Mr. 56 Yumoto

Mr. 56 Yumoto

――In “Intercity Baseball Tournament,” each team is also focusing on cheering, so I think it’s an element of fun to watch it. The appearance of cheerleaders dancing to the performance is a masterpiece, but where is the recommended seat to enjoy the atmosphere?Katayama:

Basically, only team members can enter the cheering seats, so I think that the special seats near the cheering seats are powerful. It’s best on the bench.

――If you like trains, it would be fun to go to see the JR games.Katayama:

I agree. You can also get goods related to the train, so I hope you enjoy playing baseball from there.

Why is “Intercity Baseball Tournament” held at the dome?

―― “Intercity Baseball Tournament” is held at Tokyo Dome every year, but is that a popular tournament?Yumoto

: I have been using the Meiji Jingu Baseball Stadium for about 10 years since the first tournament, and then moved to Korakuen. I’ve been using the Tokyo Dome for 34 years, but I think the significance of “playing baseball for adults in the center of Japan” is significant.

――This tournament will be held in the summer for the first time in three years. What are your thoughts on the management side?Yumoto

: The team schedule and qualifying schedule are also changing, so we will proceed while responding to those areas. After all, I think that companies have the idea that “summer is the best way to compete with the city,” so I would like them to play a hot game. I would like to support it on the management side as well.

――Please tell us if you have any other activities to liven up “Intercity Baseball Tournament”.Yumoto

: We have launched a JABA fan club from this year. We hope that fans will join us and join us in encouraging “Intercity Baseball Tournament” for the 100th tournament.Katayama: “Intercity Baseball Tournament” is better than professional baseball

It’s cheap, so I think it’s a tournament where you can feel free to come and see it. One of the attractions is that you can see the process of growth while the players who graduated from high school and university are working hard to become professionals.

JABA is also considering making the stadium a ball park for the tournament. In order to give it entertainment, I would like to create a theme park-like production, for example, by having players appear by calling. I would like to make the tournament enjoyable even in areas other than the match.

[Continued to the second part]

event information

“93rd Intercity Baseball Tournament”
Date: July 18th (Monday) -July 29th (Friday)

Location: Tokyo Dome (Tokyo)

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