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12/17/2002 Archived Entry: "Japanese Baseball News: Heavyweight Diplomacy May Weigh In for Olympic Baseball"
Kissinger to Get Involved in Olympic Baseball Question?
According to Sports Nippon, Seibu Lions owner Yoshiaki Tsutsumi may call on former U.S. Secretary of State Henry Kissinger in an attempt to persuade MLB to send players to the Athens Games in 2004. Noting that it is the absence of big leaguers that has caused International Olympic Committee officials to consider dropping baseball from the festivities, Tsutsumi, who is one of the world's richest men, is putting his workaholic ways into maintaining baseball as a medal sport.
But there are considerable logistical problems. MLB draws from players all over the world. If each country is allowed to take even just one MLB player who is a citizen of its country per team, it would greatly dilute the talent available for two weeks during the long regular schedule. Soon to be New York Yankee Hideki Matsui badly wants to represent his country, as does Lions shortstop Kazuo Matsui, who might be in a Mariners uniform by the time the games roll around. And if they are permitted to do so, then Pedro Martinez and Sammy Sosa will no doubt want to for the Dominican Republic, Bobby Abreu and Freddie Garcia will for Venezuela and Carlos Delgado and Pudge Rodriguez will for Puerto Rico. Where does it end? So Tsutsumi has a long uphill fight to be sure, even with Kissinger in his corner.
Kintetsu Buffaloes third baseman Norihiro Nakamura has promised to make a decision on his new team before the end of the year, according to Sports Nippon. He also apparently feels that the Mets will do a good job in taking care of arrangements for his family if they move to NYC....Seibu Lions catcher Tsutomu Itoh may not have much of an arm left after 20 years as an active player, but he had a good enough swing to come out on top in a round of golf at a country club earlier today in a face off with other Lions players and officials. For his efforts, he won a big screen television, which he then turned over to to newlywed pitcher Hsu Ming-chieh as a wedding present ....Kazuo Matsui, meanwhile, said that he doesn't want to discuss MLB at all until after next year's Japan Series since he only wants to concentrate on winning that fall classic in 2003....Yomiuri pitching coach Yoshitaka Katori told lefthander Hisanori Takahashi that if he wants the big bucks, he's going to have to do more than just win 9-10 games a year, that he needs to comtemplate winning 20 or winning ERA titles.... Yakult Swallows lefthander Shugo Fujii signed for approximately $615,000, an increase of $160,000. Outfielder Shinichi Sato maintained his pay at $240,000 plus incentives ....Daiei Hawks manager Sadaharu Oh visited with Sammy Sosa at the Cubs' slugger's home yesterday, being transported there on the helicopter normally used by President Hippolito Mejia, with whom Oh had lunch. After chatting with Sosa for a while, the two took in a Winter League game....The Yokohama Bay Stars are reported to be considering handing out a bonus if they win the season series against Yomiuri next year....Chiba Lotte Marines first baseman Kazuya Fukuura, who has hit .300 or better the last two campaigns, was said to be disappointed at the team's initial offer of $1 million, a $95,000 raise. Infielder Koichi Hori, though, saw the $16,000 raise proffered and immediately signed, meaning that he will pull in about $500,000 next time around.... Makoto Suzuki still hasn't put his hanko on a contract with Orix, but Sports Nippon says that an agreement is likely before year's end....Kintetsu Buffaloes rightfielder Koichi Isobe, who had a terrible year, had his salary slashed by $110,000 to slightly less than $610,000. Starting pitcher Hiroshi Takamura, who decided to abandon thoughts of going to MLB, saw his compensation jump by $150,000 to about $490,000. Centerfielder Naoyuki Omura was told that they want him to run more and had his pay envelope thin out by $64,000....Hiroshima Carp third baseman Takahiro Arai accepted an $185,000 increase to around $360,000. He also said he wants to do something about those 17 errors he made last season....How much pressure is there on Hideki Matsui right now? A swarm of reporters have his home in Tokyo surrounded and they even interviewed some employees of a car dealership who came to pick up Matsui's wheels for a periodic inspection that is required of all autos by dint of Japanese law. Matsui himself is said to have spent the day kicking back, though he told Nikkan Sports that all that is left to work on for a contract with the Yankees are "minor details.".... The Yankees, Rangers and Padres are three of the teams thought to be willing to put in a bid for Kintetsu closer Akinori Otsuka when he finally goes up for bid at the end of this week....With the help of former Red Sox executive Ray Poitevant, Brandon Knight has been picked up by the Daiei Hawks after he was also pursued by Nippon Ham. Too, Pedro Valdez is said to have agreed to terms of a contract that will see him play his third season in Fukuoka.
Baseball Consumer Alert: Avoid Unethical Spamtrap Fanstop
Administering a message board or chat site is nobody's idea of fun. There is a lot of thankless work in involved in fending off spammers, debugging the site on occasion, purging disruptive individuals and trying to come up with features that will keep folks coming back for more. And in performing these functions, the people involved want to understandably be compensated for their time and energy plus the servers used have to be purchased and maintained or payments to a host have to be made. Consequently, luring advertising to a site plays a vital role in keeping it going. Unfortunately, Fanstop, which is a nice little sports message site on the web, has allowed the advertising side get out of the hand to the point where the ads move across the text and block it out and some of it has in tow a nasty little piece of spyware called Gator that it tries to load on to your computer. Woe betide unto you if Gator gets into your system. It even makes changes in your registry and the only way to get rid of it is to go to Gator's site.
Therefore, I've found it necessary to give up posting to a Mariners board that has some terrific people on it and that I've enjoyed for the better part of three years. I'm not alone in this, as that board's original posters have begun drifting away due to what is, in my mind, sleazy advertising practices. I also recommend that Baseball Guru.com readers steer clear of that site in order to avoid possibly calamitous ramifications.
I'm not sure what gets into some people's heads. The way to make money on your site is not by pissing your audience off. ESPN is getting there, too, though they haven't yet fallen to the depths that Fanstop has. But Disney has been a gaffe machine the last few years, which is why its stock has take a digger. It's too bad that an otherwise very good site such as Fanstop has degenerated even below Disney's level.
Yankees Nearing Deal With Matsui
See story at: North Jersey.com Article
Nakamura to Make Decision Before Year's End
See story at: Japan Times Article
Wayne Graczyk Remembers Shigeru Chiba
See story at: Japan Times Article
Chong Min-tae Returns to KBO
See story at: Korea Times Article
Replies: 1 Comment
Mr Garland, there is a freeware product called Ad-aware, from a company called Lavasoft, that will scan your computer for any hidden spyware like the awful stuff from Gator. It will then allow you to delete it off your computer. You can download it from CNET.
Posted by Mariner Fan @ 12/17/2002 11:08 PM EST