Paul White of USA Today is blogging a trip through Japan visiting spring (and winter) training sites in Okinawa and other parts of Japan.
The linked entry is to White's stop in Nago City where the defending Japan Series champion Hokkaido Nippon Ham Fighters train. White spoke to Fighters manager Trey Hillman about the Japanese media portrays the Fighters success stemming from Hillman's willingness to bunt more and play for one run.
"Give me a break," he said, more in exasperation than anger, as if he's heard this one more than a few times from the large and opinionated media contingent that covers every team in Japan. "We scored the same amount of runs per nine innings the year before when we weren't bunting as much. We bunted hardly at all then because we didn't have the pitching staff to play for one run. Last year, we also had the best ERA in the league. I can bang my head against the wall with the media, but I just ask them, "Be fair, look at the big picture."
White is definitely going off the beaten path in Japan and going to cities far less visited by American tourists like me.