Saturday, June 16, 2007

As Advertised

Before I make my game prediction, there's a little business to do with regard to Matsuzaka. You've obviously seen the Asahi Super Dry beer ads that Matsuzaka has been featured in, and maybe you've had a look at the Toyota ad that ran a few months ago. Chances are, you missed the Aquarius Sports Drink ad that has been running in Japan lately. Actually there are two versions of the ad. You can watch them at the Aquarius website, as well as the "making of" video clips that might be of interest to you. Coca Cola produces Aquarius among other sports drinks and ion replenishing beverages. Coke has a relationship with MLB so you see the MLB logo in the commercials and drinks like Aquarius, unique to Japan, can also market themselves using MLB licensing.

What you see in the banner ad above is a note about a couple of Aquarius-related contests going on now. The bottom box tells you about the chance to win tickets to the September series against the Yankees, with seating up on the Green Monster.

In Japan, it's popular to put little giveaways on the tops of sodas and beverages to entice the thirsty masses to choose one drink or the other. Recently, the sports drink category of Coca Cola Japan has been giving away little MLB team towels with their drinks, pressure shrunken and neatly packaged in a little plastic hang tag around the necks of the bottles. I've been trying to find a Yankees towel, but can't seem to get one for the life of me. I stick my head into the refrigerator unit and remove each and every bottle with these "gifts" and can only seem to manage Tampa Bay, San Diego, St. Louis, Cleveland, Milwaukee, and a couple of Red Sox. Here you'll see a Red Sox towel being used as a drip catcher for a convenience store "hot pot".

Aquarius is a very thirst quenching beverage that has that unmistakable sports drink taste. Kind of coats your tongue activating salivation. I drink it fairly often and enjoy it a lot. The Matsuzaka ads are a little over the top with CG of fire engulfing the mound and water bursting from Daisuke's pitching hand, scorching the dirt and peeling it apart. You know the genre. What's interesting to me is the Pepsi counter attack to the Matsuzaka campaign. Check it out below:

Prediction: 7 IP, 6 hits, 1 walk, 1 run, 10 strikeouts

If that looks familiar, it's because it's the exact pitching line that Daisuke produced in his debut against KC. The Giants' offensive metrics are actually slightly worse than KC across the board, in part thanks to the pitcher batting, but they are bad offensively. Watch our man dominate.


At 11:51 PM, Blogger John said...

Does it taste just like Pocari sweat?
Wonder if my local konbiniya carries it

I'm watching the game today and so far this year whenever i watched the game Matsuzaka lost :( Hopefully this is the day he broke the routine

9IP 5H 1BB 2ER 10K

BONDS 3Ks - all 直球 :D

At 7:17 AM, Blogger John said...

Nice game

7IP 3H 3BB 8K

I'd really like to see Boston's offensive stats for all Matsuzaka's quality games

At 9:50 AM, Anonymous DaisukeM18 said...

Great game again by Daisuke. Another game with poor run support.

Good thing he didn't allow a run.

During the last three games Daisuke has pitched, the sox offense has scored a measly 2 runs.

I really hope the dead bats begin to turn it around. Daisuke can't do this by himself.

At 1:55 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Before #18's last outing against SF Giants, I read in an article by Michael Silverman of Boston Herald. It said that Higashio, DiceK's former manager who drafted DiceK for the Lions in Japan, flew over to see our man and had a talk with Matsuzaka over the changes in his pitching routine - from NPB to the Majors. And we know the outcome. I wonder what Mufasa said to Simba this time.

At 2:57 PM, Blogger Hiromasa said...

do you think matsuzaka will get chosen to pitch in the all star game?

At 11:17 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

No, I don't think he will get chosen for the All Star game. But I'm excited about DiceK's next scheduled game on the 22nd against Padres. Our guy is going back to stand on the same mound where he won the WBC for Japan and the MVP.

At 1:10 AM, Blogger Tully Moxness said...

Barring a serious blowup in the next two games, I don't see how Daisuke won't be selected for the all-star game. He has 8 wins and stats that are steadily moving to above-average territory. If he wins the next two games before the ASB, he'll be 10-5 - a solid record for any starter, much less a Japanese 'rookie' sensation. Trust me, this may be for real, but it's still an exhibition that makes a lot of money, and MLB will do everything to ensure that it's a hit internationally as well. Matsuzaka won't start the game, but he'll be hanging out at The Phone Company Park with the rest of the all-stars.

At 9:41 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Boston may have one rookie pitcher from Japan in the All-Star game, but his name might not be Matsuzaka.

Yes, I'm talking about Hideki Okajima.

If Okajima keeps up his performance, it might be hard to keep him off the roster, even though he doesn't have the sexy "counting stats" like saves that people look for in a reliever.

At 4:22 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I read that posters on Japanese internet boards are disappointed in Matsuzaka for issuing an intentional walk to Bonds. Do they not understand that here it is totally the call of the manager and the pitcher has nothing to do with it?

At 4:43 AM, Blogger Edwin said...

I loved Aquarius when I travelled to Japan. Sadly, they don't have the "Freestyle" brand here at the local Japanese suupaa.

And no one's mentioned how the Pepsi Ice Cucumber ad just looks plain funny compared to the Aquarius ad - Especially since Igawa has fallen off the map in the US.

At 6:40 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

To: Anonymous 4:22 AM,

It is their "samurai" spirit. They want to see their best going against Bonds. And they would only accept fastballs and "Gyro" from DiceK. They don't care about Red Sox win or lose. You are right. They don't understand. Just another stress factor for Matsuzaka...

At 6:56 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Do the yankees have the avid mikey?


At 6:59 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think DiceK is cute.

Dave Ob.


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