Play Ball!

Saturday night, we finally made it to a Korean baseball game. The Doosan Bears were playing the Kia Tigers at Jamsil Stadium, and the fabulous 8th Army Band MPT Spartan Brass were providing musical entertainment.

They started out entertaining fans just outside the stadium, putting on a great show despite the stifling heat.

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Our seats were great, on the 1st base side of the field and in the Doosan Bears section. Fans are seated according to which team they support, and both sides have cheerleaders as well as a sort of cheer captain, a man, who leads the crowd in chants and songs when their team is up to bat. Most of the fans have thunder sticks, mostly inflatable ones, and there are air pumps at the stadium with long lines of fans filling up their thunder sticks. There is constant noise and cheering for the entire game.

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Cheerleaders
Cheerleaders
We couldn't resist buying a couple of Doosan Bears hats!
We couldn’t resist buying a couple of Doosan Bears hats. I love that all the purposeful aging of the hats was exactly the same – there was also a fabricated rip on the side in the exact same spot!
Spartan Brass performing the Korean national anthem
Spartan Brass performing the Korean national anthem

I got a kick out of the Hangul spelling of this American player’s name. For those of you who want to try to guess, I’ll put his name below the picture.

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에 반 스 = Evans! I’m usually decent but slow at figuring out Hangul, but this one stumped me and I had to look it up. There are a few American players who all seem to follow the same career path: jump around to several MLB teams, play for a Japanese team, play for a Korean team. There was even a pitcher on the Doosan Bears who had come up through the Red Sox farm system; he apparently threw a complete game no-hitter here on June 30th! (Michael Bowden)

At any rate, the game was a blast, though I’m sure it would be even more fun if we knew all the songs and chants. I’m sure we’ll get back to one soon, preferably when the weather cools off a little.

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