Wasabi Stories vol.184: “Appreciate the Criticism”


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“Appreciate the Criticism”

Today’s story-teller is former baseball player and baseball commentator Yasumitsu Toyoda.

First, he says, “Not only about baseball, but in general, I think newspapers cover only what the players say these days. We cannot get the tense feeling between people who cover reports and people who get covered.”

When he was an active baseball player, there was a reporter whose name was Noguchi from Hochi Shinbun publisher. Toyoda says that Noguchi had been good to him.


It does not really mean that they met and talked in person or anything by saying Noguchi was good to him. In fact, Noguchi used to criticize him in his articles.

He criticized his attitude towards baseball more than his technical matters many times. He thinks that Noguchi was better than his manager in this regard. That is why he thinks Noguchi was good to him.

Noguchi wrote: “His posture when he goes back to the bench after strikes out is bad”, “Mishit cannot be helped, but he should not be staying sulky when he plays in the field”

Some of Noguchi’s comments in the paper were critical like those. Since Toyoda knew exactly what he meant, he tried not to show his frustration by sulking when he got struck out since then.


Toyoda says, “Just one line of criticism from him in the paper crushed me more than a scolding word from the manager. When he said, ‘What is with that attitude? How could he act like that when kids are watching?’ I regretted my behavior far more than usual.”


It is good for players to read newspapers with having pleasure and fear to find out how their actions are taken. It is not to say that a newspaper is a preachy thing, but Toyoda thinks that these critical articles may help to train players on the mental side.


The NIKKEI 01/14/2010 by Yasumitsu Toyoda (baseball commentator)




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