Tuesday, Nov. 24, 2009

Catch a Fly Ball at the Tokyo Dome

Men in tights try to swat a ball over a fence with a wooden stick. It may look familiar, but where else can you get a side of battered octopus balls with those hot dogs and nachos? Welcome to Japanese baseball at the 55,000-seat, inflatable Tokyo Dome, home to the Yomiuri Giants of the Nippon Professional Baseball league. More World Cup than World Series, here the crowd has a different chant for every player, and roving beer girls pour Kirin drafts from pony kegs on their backs. No worries if you spill one on the salaryman who bear-hugs you after every Giants homer. But if the visitors take the lead, please don't boo. The bleacher nuts at Fenway would never, ever be so nice, but in Japan, it just wouldn't be polite.

— By Tim Kindseth