PBS Premiere: July 4, 2006Check the broadcast schedule »

Koshien: More About Japanese Baseball

Masayuki Tamaki

Masayuki Tamaki, Baseball Historian.

POV: Why do the players cry so much, and why do the fans cry so much?

Masayuki Tamaki: I can't help but doubt [the trueness of their] emotion. Every player cries when they lose [at Koshien], even at the first heat. I used to play sports too, so I know how great it feels to win, or how sad it feels to lose. But nobody cries that much. In any other sports, I have never seen any student players cry when they lose at the first heat in a regional tournament.

It is sort of like a group hysteria. They think they have to cry because it's become a tradition. I do not think they are crying from the bottom of their heart. Back in time, Suishu Tobita wrote: "Players that cannot even cry when they lose are not serious enough." So what players who cannot cry would do, is pretend to cry. And it became a habit. I think it's just the way it is. At high school soccer tournaments, the players may not cry when they lose. I don't think it means they have a different mentality than the baseball players do. It's just the habit that's different. And people like watching them cry. I think that's all.