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The path leading out of the west exit of Koshien Station is adorned on both sides with yellow and white posters urging the Hanshin Tigers to finish as the No. 1 team in Japan. Fans in Osaka and the surrounding areas are cheering on Tigers players whenever they see them, and if you shop at the right grocery stores you might hear the strains of the Hanshin fight song, “Rokko Oroshi” (roughly, the Wind of Mount Rokko), playing through the speakers.

The Hanshin-loving portion of the Kansai region is already swept up in Japan Series fever, and the excitement will hit a fevered pitch when the Tigers and Fukuoka Softbank Hawks kick off the Japanese Fall Classic on Saturday night at Koshien Stadium.

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