MLB and TOMODACHI Reopen Baseball Field in Ishinomaki
December 9, 2012– U.S. Ambassador to Japan John Roos joined New York Yankees star center fielder Curtis Granderson and the Mayor of Ishinomaki, Hiroshi Kameyama, at a ceremony to reopen a baseball stadium in Ishinomaki that had been damaged after the March 11, 2011 tsunami.
The cold and snow could not put a damper on a terrific day in Ishinomaki, as hundreds of kids and fans showed up to see the beautifully refurbished baseball field. Thanks to donations of approximately $1 million from Major League Baseball, the Major League Baseball Players’ Association, the Japan Cultural and Community Center of Northern California, and the TOMODACHI Initiative, the people of Ishinomaki will again be able to enjoy the game of baseball that is so loved in both Japan and the United States.
During his remarks at the ceremony, Ambassador Roos told the crowd, “Simply put, you’ve created a ‘field of dreams.’” Following the ceremony, Curtis Granderson led a number of young ballplayers in a series of baseball exercises and games. The Yankees’ center fielder became the latest MLB star to personally visit the Tohoku region, following in the footsteps of Cal Ripken, Jr. in 2011 and the members of the Seattle Mariners and Oakland Athletics in March 2012.