What Is The Theme Of Banzai Babe Ruth

1498 Words6 Pages

Josh Bahlmann
17 April 2018
Banzai Babe Ruth Review Banzai Babe Ruth; Baseball, Espionage, & Assassination is an extreme narrative that accounts for the events of an attempted goodwill tour of Japan by some of the United State’s Major League Baseball’s top talent ballplayers. The book covers much of the brainstorming and motivation behind the tour’s goals and ambitions as well as the events that occurred on the field while at the same time making connections of those event’s influences on national and international affairs within Japan and with the United States. In this carefully prepared display of history which is dominated by the legendary Babe Ruth, the author, Robert Fitts, attempts to accurately portray the events of the Tour of Japan …show more content…

There are two men who are credited with introducing baseball to the country. These men were Horace Wilson and Hiroshi Hiraoka. Wilson was an American professor teaching in Tokyo, who introduced the game to his Japanese students. Hiraoka was a Japanese engineer, who was studying in the United States and, upon his arrival home, he quickly formed a team with some of coworkers. Baseball quickly gained popularity within the Japanese universities and began to spread from there. In 1908, in attempts to promote the sport to Japan, professional baseball teams from America would compose a team of All-Star players and send them to Japan to play exhibition games against amateur or university teams. Often called the Tour of Japan, the American ballplayers made repeated trips to Japan in 1913, 1920, 1922, 1931, and the most famous Tour of Japan in 1934. Fitts compares the Tour of 1934 to its previous tours to set the scene to show the differences in its characters and events, where the players were mostly collegiate teams. Players from the professional teams that had visited earlier behaved poorly and American promoters pocketed most of the …show more content…

The tour provided extensive entertainment supplied with impressive homeruns and sensational pitching that ignited the calling for professional baseball in Japan. Furthermore, the tour brought together two vastly different countries together over a shared love for the sport. Babe Ruth undoubtedly was the highlight of the tour, coupled with eight other Hall of Famers, they were endlessly celebrated by the hundreds of thousands of fans as they journeyed through Japan. Babe Ruth left Japan a legend and was forever immortalized within Japanese culture after the trip, he is even credited as an international ambassador of the game. After the tour, Ruth and his family went on multiple vacations to other parts of Asia, Europe, and the Middle East. The Tour of Japan 1934 greatly boosted the association between Japan and the United States but failed to prevent Japan’s intentional attack on Pearl Harbor nearly a decade later. During World War II, it is said that Japanese soldiers would yell, “To hell with Babe Ruth!” during battle as an insult to the American enemy. The Department of Defense considered sending Babe Ruth to Guam to deliver messages via radio to the Japanese to try to convince them to end the war. The war had suspended professional play in the Japanese league in 1944, but then encouraged to restart to help boost Japanese morale once the war had ended. Then in 1946, play resumed and has thrived ever

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