The Japan Professional Baseball Players Association has called on the resignation of Nippon Professional Baseball Commissioner Ryozo Kato for his office’s failure to exercise transparency concerning the ball used this season. Toru Matsubara, the player union’s secretary-general, has personally submitted the letter of request. Matsubara said that the NPB should have a commissioner who can really demonstrate leadership.
Players, the media and fans of Japanese baseball have been puzzled for the sudden rise, amounting to 40 percent as of the second week of the month, in homeruns scored this season. When questioned for explanation, Commissioner Kato only kept saying that the balls “have not been changed.” It was only this month when the NPB chief admitted to changing the balls for “excitement” purposes.
“We need a young, moderate commissioner who has leadership skills and can bring about the necessary reforms,” said Rakuten Eagles catcher Motohiro Shima, who also serves as the Chairman of Japan Professional Baseball Players Association. The change of the baseball, in order to add “excitement” to the game, resulted to 512 homeruns in 341 games played. The season’s homer count in the league is 599. Compared to the previous seasons, there were 881 homers in 2012 and 939 in 2011.
[via The Republic]