As the Climax Series (CS) approaches, we took the time to conduct an online survey of 17,577 male baseball fans aged 20-54 who say they attend at least one game every season. From that pool, we took results of 200 fans from each team. The average age of fans were: 42.2 years for Giants fans, 40.6 years for Carp fans and 41.5 years for Tigers fans.
Regarding satisfaction with game-calling by the home team’s managers, 59% of Giants fans, 35.5% of Carp fans and a mere 7% of Tigers fans answered “satisfied” or “very satisfied.”
Giants manager Hara got nearly a 60% approval rate, with many comments like “Despite continual injuries and choking cleanup hitters, Hara’s management skills enabled us to win the league” and “It was because of his occasional iron-fisted and devilish managing tactics that we won.”
On the other hand, others expressed dissatisfaction with “too much fiddling with the lineup, especially the cleanup slot. Those poor players” and “His moves are too aggressive. He needs to take a calmer approach.” Even so, in 11 seasons as manager, his track record of producing 7 league titles is impressive.
Nearly 80% of Hiroshima fans said they were “satisfied” or “very satisfied” with the team’s record, but that number fell to 35.5% when talks turned to manager Nomura’s performance. Overall, opinions were clearly divided as 32.5% also said they were “dissatisfied” or “very dissatisfied” with his performance.
Fans expressing approval said “Despite a meagre lineup, we fared well against the Giants and Tigers. He’s not just playing for today, but putting up with the current situation with the team’s future clearly in sight.” Disapprovers complained that “He played slumping players in crucial situations, failed to make moves when they needed to be made, and too often it was hard to make sense of his moves.” Also, “A LOT of local fans think that the team could have won it all were it not for Nomura managing the team.”
The most pitiful of all was the Tigers. Just 7% said they were “satisfied” or “very satisfied” with Wada’s running of the team, while a whopping 64.5% said they were “dissatisfied” or “very dissatisfied.”
More specifically, “His choice of catcher throughout the season was inconsistent,” “Players who did well the day before were often left out of the lineup the next day. Unthinkable,” “The instant the organization said they were sticking with Wada next season (at the end of August) the team started choking. The players probably lost motivation when they heard about it,” and “I can’t imagine cheering for this team next year if they happen to win in the playoffs and Wada is offered a new contract.”
Can he even look fans in the eye anymore?