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What in the Kenny Powers is going on in Japan? In a move that rivals La Flama Blanca’s most absurd diamond entrances, Japanese baseball team manager Tsuyoshi Shinjo made his home managerial debut in a way that will hover in the minds of baseball fans for decades to come.
Shinjo opted against using a bullpen cart or, ya know, just walking to the dugout to join his fellow Nippon-Ham Fighters. Instead, he flew through the dome on a hover craft, accompanied by spotlight, before landing and then managing.
Shinjo’s bravado makes Stone Cold’s Zamboni entrance seem normal.
WATCH THE SHORT FLIGHT BELOW. THEN CONFIRM YOUR EYES AREN’T DECEIVING YOU AND WATCH AGAIN.
Japan's Tsuyoshi "Big Boss" Shinjo just entered the game on a hover craft for his managerial debut with the Nippon-Ham Fighters pic.twitter.com/3xCWFb2dZR
— Farm To Fame (@FarmToFame_) March 29, 2022
In the hall of absurd entrances, Shinjo’s liftoff deserves its own wing. Maybe even its own building. What even comes close?
Stone Cold’s move was different, as was The Undertaker’s trek to the ring on two wheels. Those were scripted events of sports entertainment. (Sorry, believers.)
Boxer Deontay Wilder has made a career out of odd walks to the ring, but he still usually uses both legs to reach his destination. Marshawn Lynch once famously ghost-rode the whip, but that was post game. Jackie Moon took the mic and introduced himself. And who could forget Brian Dawkins crawling to the sidelines?
All of the above offer enthusiasm, creativity and a lot of ego, but none compares to Shinjo’s journey above the bases. And of course, this journey wouldn’t be complete without the personalized flight jacket and helmet, both of which he discarded upon landing.
Of course, the Nippon-Ham Fighters ultimately lost Shinjo’s home debut 4-0. But everyone who witnessed that entrance still walked away a winner.
Kenny Powers famously said, “When my ass was 19 years old, I changed the face of professional baseball. I was handed the keys to the kingdom.” It’s obvious now that he eventually handed those keys to Shinjo, who pawned the kingdom for a kick-ass hover craft.
Follow along on Twitter: @OhioAF