How can I find the 2023 Hiroshima Toyo Carp schedule in English?
January 6, 2023 9:20 AM   Subscribe

We're going to Japan from May 27th-June 11th. I'd like to see a Hiroshima Toyo Carp game if possible. It seems the 2023 schedules are released, but I can't find them in English. Does anyone either: know where I can find the schedule in English; have a solid plan of where I can find it in Japanese and get it auto-translated; or speak enough Japanese to just tell me when the Carp are at home during that span?
posted by DirtyOldTown to Travel & Transportation around Hiroshima, Japan (14 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Best answer: This is their month-by-month schedule on their website. The tabs across the top are the months. Dates shown with a pink background are home games. I'm afraid the only team logos on that calendar that I know off the top of my head are the Hanshin Tigers and Yomiuri Giants.

This looks like it might be a handy adjunct resource.
posted by adamrice at 9:38 AM on January 6, 2023 [2 favorites]

Response by poster: That month-by-month helps some, thanks. I think the green ones and the pink ones seem to be home games, as they're listed at Mazda, which is the Hiroshima stadium. Still not clear on why the colors are different though. Looks like they're in town the 2nd through the 4th. That should work!
posted by DirtyOldTown at 10:48 AM on January 6, 2023

Best answer: [I read/speak Japanese but my sports knowledge is basically zero...]

This is the Carp English page. Currently seems to have only the 2022 so far. (From the site adamrice linked, go to MENU in top right corner, click/hover on last tab entitled ENGLISH.)

On the Japanese website calendar, the top right corner of each date lists the stadium location (e.g. Mazda). For the dates you listed, I see the following stadium locations:

マツダ = Mazda
京セラドーム = Kyocera Dome
エスコンF = Es-Con Field [seems to be in Hokkaido?]
ZOZOマリン = Zozo Marine [Chiba]
[So you could find the dates with the locations you'd like. Again, I'm not familiar with these stadia so please verify...]

You can download a pdf (Japanese only, sorry) of the official schedule--on the Japanese page, go to top left and hover over tab labelled スケジュール (Schedule); the last item in the menu is 公式戦日程表ダウンロード (Download Official Game Schedule). From this doc, it appears the webpages's pink/green indicates the type of league match (I don't know the technical sports terms here but maybe something along the lines of "official tournament" vs inter-league "exchange/friendlies"?)
posted by Sockin'inthefreeworld at 12:24 PM on January 6, 2023 [1 favorite]

Best answer: 26-28 May: Home vs. Tokyo Yakult Swallows
30 May - 1 June: Away vs. Osaka Orix Buffaloes
2-4 June: Home vs. Fukuoka SoftBank Hawks
6-8 June: Away vs. Hokkaido Nippon-Ham Fighters
9-12 June: Away vs. Chiba Lotte Marines
posted by bgrebs at 1:05 PM on January 6, 2023 [1 favorite]

Best answer: May 27-28 is at home against Yakult Swallows (Tokyo) and June 2-4 is at home against Softbank Hawks (Fukuoka). I am not sure what the difference in background on the calendar signifies though. Hawks play in the Pacific League so maybe the background colour shows interleague play?
posted by any portmanteau in a storm at 1:11 PM on January 6, 2023 [1 favorite]

Also I don't know if you've ever been to a baseball game in Japan but the one game I went to, it was a Hanshin Tigers game at Koshien, was way better than any of the Blue Jays games I've been to here in Toronto.
posted by any portmanteau in a storm at 2:10 PM on January 6, 2023

Response by poster: I've never been to Japan at all, let alone seen an NPB game. That said, I'm a Cubs fan to the point of religious fervor and I love Seiya Suzuki, who was a Toyo Carp before jumping to MLB. And I understand the Hiroshima fans are arguably the most energetic and fun. So I cannot wait to see a home game there.

I saw a Red Sox game in the 1990s at Fenway and that was, to this point, still the most fun fan experience I've had elsewhere. The fans got into playful shouting matches about scoreboard trivia. They had special cheers for utility guys and pinch hitters. They yelled stuff like "Hit the cutoff man, you bum!" It was like being in a sea of real enthusiasm.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 2:39 PM on January 6, 2023

I went to a Swallows game in Tokyo a few years ago and chose them because, as a Cubs fan, they were the lovable losers like the Cubs were. Since then I think they’ve won a few championships. Even back then sitting in the fans section was super fun. Lots of cheers, umbrella dances… totally different than US baseball. I’m only bringing this up if you’re going out of your way and would be happy seeing another team.
posted by Bunglegirl at 4:25 PM on January 6, 2023

They gave out balloons at the Tigers game and we all released them at the same time. Quite a sight. The other things that stuck out to me were that the cheerleaders were normal looking people whose job it was to lead everyone in the cheers and that the stadium people were totally OK with you bringing in your own food and drink but they made people put their drinks in cups (which they provided) as they didn't want people throwing full bottles or cans. Altogether a much more fan friendly experience. Pictures. This was all 15 years ago so things may have changed by now.
posted by any portmanteau in a storm at 5:51 PM on January 6, 2023

getting concessions at a yakult swallows game in the 90s was an adventure for me. you went under the stands and there were many vendor stalls all next to each other. yummy stuff - yakitori, gyoza, etc. BUT. none of the vendors took cash; they only took tickets (like many ramen shops). when i went to the machine selling the tickets, it was just all japanese words - no pictures. i ended up buying a random ticket and then showing it to vendors until i found who matched it. fun times.

so be sure to either a) have a japanese speaker with you, or b) memorize the written names of some ballpark snacks so you can buy a ticket for them.
posted by bruceo at 6:22 PM on January 6, 2023 [1 favorite]

I am loving everyone's anecdotes! Many of my childhood baseball-in-Japan memories are of watching my dad and grandpa get very worked up watching the summertime games on TV--that stadium atmosphere is probably among the most raucous you'll see Japanese folks get...

Addendum to my previous comment about the pink/green: I took another look at the pdf/website and did some Googling for the official terminology and it appears that
the pink (e.g. May 27th) is セ・リーグ公式戦 ( = Central League Regular Season) and
the green (e.g. June 2nd) is the セ・パ交流戦 (= Central and Pacific Leagues Interleague).

(That last link is what you get when you go to the NPB website and click on English; they have a calendar/schedule as well but do not seem to have updated for 2023 yet.
The pdf labels them in grayscale so it got confusing checking against the website's color scheme; plus I didn't know what "Se League" and "Pa League" would translate to so held back on commenting this earlier.)
posted by Sockin'inthefreeworld at 7:44 PM on January 6, 2023

Response by poster: I ended up getting touch with Michael at (as linked in adamrice's comment. Since the teams will not ship tickets overseas and sell out months in advances, it seems likely to be my best route.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 7:22 AM on January 23, 2023

Response by poster: adamrice is the winner as Michael at replied instantly, put me on an email list specific to what I was trying to get, notified me when tickets went on sale, and is getting us three infield box seats for a Saturday game. They will be waiting for us at our hotel in Hiroshima.

Considering that amount of shepherding and assistance and considering that it is literally not allowed to buy NPB tickets from outside Japan and especially considering that the Carp sell out within days of tickets going on sale, his $59 concierge fee feels like a steal.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 7:47 AM on February 1, 2023

Response by poster: Michael from wasn't able to score us lower deck, but he did get us seats in the Carp's "performance" section, where the fans all dress in Carp gear, sing, dance, and cheer like mad. It should be a blast.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 1:24 PM on March 17, 2023

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