Watching the baseball playoffs is an interesting challenge here in Beijing. I was thrilled when I realized that I could get the games live, if I got up early enough, or watch them later in the day with replay.
I got into this habit during the summer of watching the baseball games as a nice relief from watching endless soccer, table tennis, fishing and cricket shows on ESPN/Star. Ok, I was having to watch the Yankees play every game but at least I could cheer for the other team. I have a long standing policy of cheering for “anyone but the Yankees”. So I watched the Yankees and occasionally got to see my Blue Jays play. It was wonderful to watch MLB and listen to the crowds and the commentators. There is just something about the sound of a baseball game that makes me feel all warm and fuzzy.
An Aussie friend spent a lot of the summer living with me and she had to put up with me occasionally going on and on about the wonders of baseball. It makes no sense to her and she has even less interest. Oh well, at least she explained Cricket to me. This is the umpteenth time I have had someone explain this game to me and each time I grasp a bit more but I still really do not see what all the fuss is about. I am becoming desperate enough to have “Cricket for Dummies” sitting in my Amazon cart. I haven’t hit the purchase button yet but you never know.
So, it is now baseball play off season and I am ready to enjoy all of the action whether live or tape – don’t really care. (I should also point out that I only get 4 English channels and so thoroughly enjoy my ESPN.) Suddenly, everything changes. The playoff games are on as I expected but they are being simulcast in, get this, Chinese…..yes, they are over riding the English commentators with Chinese. I am devastated. I have realized that a great deal of watching or listening to baseball or any sport for that matter has to do with the sounds that go with it. I have lost that though they have still allowed the crowd noise to come through but the information is in Chinese. So now instead of being able to work on my computer while sitting in front of the tv listening to the game and occasionally looking up, I must know actually watch the action and put up with the commentators.
In all fairness, I will point out that I think the commentators are doing a good job even though I don’t understand them. They get excited at the right places and no when to be quiet at the right places. I also got to hear God Bless America during the seventh inning stretch. That was nice.
I decided that I would listen to the game on the radio online while watching the game but after searching for about 30 minutes I gave up. If anyone knows a way to listen to the games online free please let me know.