Japanese baseball reporter and insider, Wayne Graczyk, posted an interesting article about the fall of the Tokyo and Yokohama clubs over the last several seasons. He compares them unfavorably to the state of affairs in the 80’s and says that they are two of the “worst franchises in Japanese pro baseball, in terms of both player talent and attractiveness to their respective fan bases”.
Even though some of the numbers he uses to support his thesis were surprising for me (for example, I was not aware that Meiji Jingu stadium could ever hold more than 45,000 spectators; also, he was right about how far behind first place Yokohama is, but was slightly off on Tokyo’s tally), he levels a decent indictment of the two clubs in question while highlighting mismanagement as one of the key culprits in terms of this season’s unsuccessful campaign.
Another interesting point, which is definitely worth some discussion, is his analysis of Tokyo’s power-hitting drought:
“We just had bad luck with our gaikokujin this season,” said Takada.
There may be some truth to that, but it appears more as if the non-Japanese guys were not given the chance to play up to potential.
Read the rest of the article here.