Chiba Lotte Marines manager Bobby Valentine says he has enjoyed Japan’s first season of interleague play, and he has an idea to make it more exciting: a “reverse” DH rule.

Instead of using the designated hitter in games played at Pacific League parks, the DH rule should be in effect at the Central League stadiums, and pitchers should bat at games when the PL club is at home.

“That way, fans in the Central League cities who do not normally get to see the DH would have a chance to see it,” said Valentine.

He also pointed out that, if one of his Marines pitchers got a hit in a CL stadium (Hiroyuki Kobayashi hit a double against the Giants at Tokyo Dome on May 25, and Yasutomo Kubo had two hits the next night), it might not mean that much to the fans, because they see pitchers hit all the time.

“But if one my pitchers got a hit at Chiba Marine Stadium, the fans would go crazy,” said Bobby.

Reverse DH? I like it.

For baseball fans in Tokyo who work late, the Hokkaido Nippon Ham Fighters have a deal for you, the “nana-san-maru” ticket.

The Fighters will play seven weeknight “home” games (6 p.m. start) at Tokyo Dome during July and August and, if you can’t get there until 7:30 p.m. or later, you will be admitted after that time with a ticket good for an infield reserved seat at a cost of only 1,000 yen, half price off the regular charge.

Available dates for the promotion are July 4-6 when the F’s will play the Chiba Lotte Marines; July 12-13, against the Fukuoka SoftBank Hawks, and Aug. 16-17, when the visiting team will be the Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles.

In a time of both misinformation and too much information, quality journalism is more crucial than ever.
By subscribing, you can help us get the story right.