(November 8th)

Hi everyone! I have many things to report, but before I start, I’d like to answer some questions from the blog.

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KATSUKO asked: There should be so many fans that have difficulty getting to stadium where there are away games to support the team while the team is on the road. We’d really love to come see every game and cheer with everybody, but not all of us can do this because of where we live and work. And I was thinking that it’d be wonderful if there was a stadium (ex. Chiba Marine Stadium) that anyone could just go in and cheer for Marines!
Would it be possible to open the Marine stadium to the public so that all of us fans can get together and cheer for the team when they are away?

Interestingly enough, I was at the university here at Kaihin-Makuhari yesterday at Josai International. The students requested the same thing, but they suggested sports bars that support the Marines. Fans could all go together and cheer on the team when it is on the road.

I think insurance and expenses would make it difficult to open up the Marine stadium itself, but possibly, our sports bar at the stadium would be a good idea! We have a lounge there (BAR MAGIC) that could be open. I will run this by the front office people and Setoyama-san.

Rantaro asked: Could you tell me which player you would choose for WBC Japanese team if you were the manager?

Well, it’s really too difficult for me to go through every team and pick, but the Lotte players, of course, would be in there. Nishioka if he’s healthy. Satozaki has said that he does not want to go, but Hashimoto would represent our team well ― he was playing as well as anyone in the league when the season ended last year.
Many of our pitchers, including Kawasaki, could be very effective out of the bullpen. And Ogino, Naruse could go, and Shimizu Nao has pitched well.
Watanabe Shunsuke has that submarine luck: when he’s healthy he’s really good, so along with Imae (if he returns from his broken arm and is healthy) he could be the #1.

What other choices at third base? Of course Nakamura over at the Lions is a great power hitter.
And then we will have to see!

N.S. bowler asked: I understand that the entire stadium can’t be non-smoking environment, but could you please help and reduce the number of smoking areas to 50%, and move them to some spots that won’t bother non-smokers? I don’t really feel like going to the Marine stadium because of this issue. Could you please tell them to move and get rid of some of the ashtrays?

Well, smoking has been one of my main gripes of Marine stadium, that people have to walk through the smoking areas to get to the bathrooms. Hopefully we’re going to plan that better this year. We hired Ishikawa to assist Setoyama-san with stadium operations and Setoyama-san is now in charge of everything with our organization. I think they should adjust that, along with the bathroom situations for the female fans. I keep hearing about the situation being not-so-great for our fans.

Mrs.gumball asked: I saw the news that talked about your documentary “The Zen of Bobby V” and I’m wondering if anyone ever shows that in Japan. Could you make the movie available to Japanese fans too?I really really want to see it. Please!

One of the television stations bought the rights to show it in Japan, but it hasn’t been on yet. I wonder if maybe the rights were just bought just so that someone else wouldn’t show it (lol). I thought that the young kids Andrew Jenks, Andrew Muscato, and Jonah Quickmire Pettigrew did a fabulous job of producing the documentary. They documented what they saw during the year they followed the team and me around in Japan. It was just spectacular. The film just played in the U.S. Sports Film Festival and many people saw it there. I got many messages saying how much my friends liked it.

No Name asked: How come you give more opportunities to foreign players than younger players?
Ever since those 3 foreign players joined in the starting lineup, the games got boring, offense and defense suck, so I’ve stopped going to the stadium to watch games. I’m not saying this just because they are foreign players, but all I see from them is getting double-play, strikeout, and burdensome when it comes to defense.

I’m not sure I give MORE opportunities; I give those players that are deserving the opportunity to play and I try to put the best team on the field so that we have the best chance at winning.
Of course you know the farm team is the place for young players to play and develop. If they do develop to the point that they are Ichi-gun level, then I’d love to see them in the big leagues.

I’m reading here about watching some of our foreign players strike-out, and I know that that’s no fun for anyone. It’s definitely no fun for me, especially when the guy who’s making the most money is striking out the most.
We won’t have a player like that on our team next year. That’s really no fun!

I am thinking about having a team that’s comprised of as many good Japanese players as possible next year. I think our players are now mature enough and good enough to get things done.

aruto asked: Could you please tell me why you don’t use sacrifice bunts if there are any particular reasons for it?

We use the bunt when I think it’s going to win a game for us or help the game for us.

Regretfully, this year, most of the guys that were asked to bunt but didn’t bunt very well and fouled pitches off. I like to put players in the position where they can succeed. Some of our players (and that is our Japanese players also) are in a bunting slump this year. They practiced repeatedly with Morozumi coach but I wasn’t confident that some of them had mastered the bunt.

eddie mcclellan asked: What do you think about the World Baseball Classic?

If there’s no Olympics, and there’s no other place to have an International stage for baseball, I think the best thing you could do is have a World Baseball Classic.
Playing baseball before the season starts is really the ideal time to play.

I think team competition in baseball, rather than exhibition or All-Star competition, is the best way to see the game played. Best teams who play together all year play against best teams, but you know, it’s better than nothing.

Jay asked: Why do you play baseball in a heavy rain?
Sometimes you continue the games in a super heavy rain, but the other time the game gets canceled even though the rain isn’t that heavy!
Do you think fans will be happy about this?
We spend time and money to watch games at the stadium.
I get the feeling that the team doesn’t really care about us.
The team used to treat us better but now it’s like all they can think about is money.
So why does the team need to play in a rain? Marketing?
Bobby, please tell me.

That’s a heck of a question!

It’s very difficult to predict the weather, and sometimes the forecast that says it’s going to stop raining, but it continues to rain. Then, we have a forecast that says it’s going to rain all night, and it stops raining.

I think that this is one of the most difficult decisions we have as a team: to decide when to play and when not to play. Once we start playing the game, the decision to continue, cancel, or stop the game is the Umpire’s. Sometimes I find it hard to believe that we’re actually playing the game in a hard, downpour rain. Yet they try to play and try to get 5 innings in. If you play 5 innings, it’s a complete game! As you well know, our only tie game this year one that was called after 5 innings of play. It’s a very difficult situation. I’d like to reward fans when they come and we get a rain out. I want to give them 3 tickets for the future game for every 1 ticket that they purchased to show our loyalty. I think we do need more fan service. There was a comment that the team is thinking more about money these days than they did in the last couple of years. When I was in charge of making a lot of decisions, fans were #1 in my mind. I always wanted fans to be treated as perfectly as possible. These decisions have been taken away from me and we have other people who run the different departments at Marine stadium now. I think they just have to be reminded that our fans are the most important part of our game.

we love baseball! asked: What did you think about the process of choosing the manager for WBC Japan team?

I’m not sure what goes on behind closed doors, so I don’t even want to comment on it, but I think it’s kind of strange that it took so long to name one.
I hope that they don’t change their minds if the Giants don’t win this Japan Series, which has been a great Series. It’s down to 3 games each after 6. Tonight is the championship game and I can’t wait!

aligataya asked: Didn’t Kimura-toshu refuse to play for Yokohama in the past by telling them that he wanted to join Chiba Lotte?

I think that is true. He did not sign with the Yokohama team. When he was drafted by the Yokohama team, and I was asked what I thought he should do, I said I thought he should sign with Yokohama. I don’t think draft is the place for a player to decide what team he wants to go to. They think it’s hypocritical that in Japan, when the player decides that he wants to play for a team, everyone feels OK unless the team is in MLB. If the team is in MLB and the amateur player decides he wants to play for them, everybody thinks he should be punished. But if a player tries to decide what team he’s going to play for here within Japan, and supersedes the draft, everyone feels that’s OK. I don’t know how that whole thing’s going to resolve itself, but hopefully in the future it will.

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There will be more to come, but thanks for listening and thanks for the questions and hopefully they were answered to your liking.

See you soon!



Bobby
Commit to your passions - Passionately pursue your commitments

Visitor Questions 6 コメント数:6 (6 Comments)

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  1. 623 さんのコメント: (623 says):

    たくさんの質問に回答してくれたボビー!!ありがとうございます!!
    (わたしが質問したわけではないですが。)

    その中でも1番共感したのはマリンスタジアムのトイレの改修についてです。
    男性はどうなのかわかりませんが、女性はトイレの清潔感ひとつでその施設の印象が大きく変わります。
    トイレが綺麗であれば=その施設は利用しやすい、になりますし、トイレにマイナスイメージがつけばその施設に行く機会が減ってしまうこともあるんです。

    快適なマリンスタジアムになることを期待しています!!

    (Thank you so much for answering so many questions, Bobby!! (I didn’t ask, but was happy to read your answers!)

    One of the answers I was happy read is about bathroom situations.
    I don’t know about how men think about their bathrooms, but how clean the bathrooms is very important to women.
    If the bathrooms are clean, we think that the facility is great to use but if not, then we don’t even want to go there because we don’t want to use dirty bathrooms!

    I hope the Marine stadium becomes women-friendly!!)

  2. roro さんのコメント: (roro says):

    大好きなボビー!Q&Aコーナーおもしろいです!
    わたしも女子トイレの話、、、マリンスタジアムのトイレは汚くて行きたくないので、いつもビールを我慢しています。

    ボビーのanswerを見て、こんな話まで聞いてくれる監督って他にはいないからビックリしたのと、やっぱりボビーが監督ってのは私たちの誇りだなぁと思います。

    もう一つ社長さんにお話してほしいことがあります。
    それは、私はよく85歳になる祖母と観戦に行くのですが、祖母にとって2階席までの階段がけっこう大変で、彼女もだんだん楽しみにしている観戦に行く回数が減ってきてしまって、とても悲しいです。・・・そういう人のための(vip用とかではなく)気軽に使えるエレベーターがもっとあるといいな、と思います。

    野球と関係ない話ばかり書いてしまいすみません。

    マリーンズカーニバルでボビーや選手の皆さんに会えるのを楽しみにしています!!
    ボビーありがとう!

    (My darling Bobby! I always enjoy this “Q & A”!
    I couldn’t agree more about girls bathrooms…I always try not to have beer at the stadium because I don’t want to use the dirty bathrooms there!

    I’m so surprised to find out that you really listen to what we think and say, and we’re so lucky to have you as the Marines manager.

    I have something I’d like you to talk with Setoyama-san.
    My 85 years old grandma likes to go watch the games with me, but it’s getting more difficult for her to take stairs to the 2nd floor seats. And I’m so sad now because she doesn’t let me take her as much as she used to because of this. So I thought it’d be so great if there are elevators for elderly or other people who need them! I really want to watch games with my grandma!

    Sorry that I’m not talking about baseball.

    I’m so looking forward to seeing you and the players at Marines Carnival!!
    Thank you, Bobby!)

  3. white ☆ star さんのコメント: (white ☆ star says):

    Q&A、とても興味深く読みました。
    真摯に回答してくださるボビー監督、さすがです。

    トイレを利用すると、特に寒い日や、雨に濡れながら応援している日、究極にテンションが下がる場所になってしまいます。

    熱い気持ちで応援していても、トイレに行くと
    まるで、いい流れが途切れてしまうような、そんな感じです。

    マリンスタジアムに居る以上、どこにいても、常に熱い気持ちで居続けたい。。。
    みんなが心地よくマリンズの応援に集中できるスタジアム作りを心から願っています。

    タバコ空間同様に、トイレ空間も検討してくださると嬉しいです。

    寒くなってきたので、風邪に気をつけて。
    マリーンズカーニバルを楽しみにしています。

    (I really enjoyed reading “Q & A”.
    Thanks for your honest answers!

    I also hate going to that bathrooms especially when it’s cold out or rains, and when I do, I lose my passion to cheer for the team because the bathrooms are really discouraging.

    Once I’m at the stadium, I’d like to be cheering with all my heart wherever I am… I really hope that you can help them making the stadium a better place.

    I’ll be so happy if the situations with smoking and bathrooms can be solved!

    It’s getting pretty cold lately, so please take care not to catch a cold.
    I’m excited for Marines Carnival!)

  4. ふみあき Fumiaki さんのコメント: (ふみあき Fumiaki says):

    ボビーの生の声が聞けて嬉しいです。
    私も聞きたいことがあったら送りますので、その時はよろしくお願いします。
    来年もマリンスタジアムへ行きます。
    また、面白いゲームをお願いしますね。

    (I’m so happy to know what you really think!
    I’ll make sure to post questions when I have one, and I hope you can answer.

    I’ll be at the Marine stadium again next year and I’m looking forward to watching your great games!)

  5. Ed O. さんのコメント: (Ed O. says):

    Bobby V.,

    Do you think the BJ-League would benefit — fan interest, increased competiton — by having 5-10 NBA veterans come over here and play the final years of their pro careers?

    Similarly, what types of marketing campaigns or strategies that you have seen work for baseball teams, particularly Chiba Lotte are useful for a growing league like the BJ-League?

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