The Electabuzz vs. The Starmies: A guide to the baseball teams of the Pokemon universe
Baseball is a popular sport. You must know that -- after all, you like it yourself. It's played all over the world (and you can see many global teams in this year's World Baseball Classic), and in fact, it's even spread to some fictional worlds. Which ones, you ask?
Get ready for Pokemon baseball.
I'm not talking about some kind of "Pokemon Stadium"-esque game where you get to find out how far Geodude could hit a baseball (my guess: pretty far because look at those arms, but he could never run the bases since he has no legs). If you've ever played the games, you maybe remember battling certain trainers that looked like this:
Yes, that's a baseball cap and glove. Turns out that, in addition to running around in tall grass and catching pocket monsters, the people who live in the Pokemon universe at least like to have a catch. But wait, what's that in Pokemon Black/White?
Yup -- that's a baseball diamond. Specifically, one at the Big Stadium in the fictional Nimbasa City. So, clearly organized baseball exists in the Pokemon world, too. And thanks to the anime, we know a little bit about it.
There are three major teams in the Pokemon universe (that we know of):
Hometown: Goldenrod City
The NPB team they're probably based on: the Hanshin Tigers
The series' biggest baseball fan is definitely Casey, a novice Pokemon trainer that Ash and his friends meet on the way to Violet City. She pretends all of her battles are baseball games and calls them accordingly. Her favorite team? The Electabuzz. She and her Chikorita wear team apparel everywhere they go:
But they're not a very good team. According to Ash, they finish in last place every year. However, Casey has the heart of a true fan and sings the Electabuzz theme song constantly:
She even gets to meet the team's star pitcher, Cory Demario. Unfortunately, he's out with a "shoulder injury" that turns out to be the yips. But Casey finds a way to solve his problem that involves flying a Charizard out of a waterfall … which seems like the coolest way to rehab an injury ever.
Hometown: Cerulean City
The NPB team they're probably based on: the Yokohama Bay Stars
In an episode called "A Date with Delcatty," Casey is hanging out around Cerulean City, trying to get tickets to an Electabuzz-Starmies game. That's almost all we know about the team, because they're not lucky enough to have an extremely passionate superfan. But, thanks to episode "Those Darn Electabuzz," we also know they hand the Electabuzz their 10th loss in a row, thanks to a dramatic walk-off home run.
The NPB team they're probably based on: The Hiroshima Carp
Little is known about the Magikarp. They're only mentioned once in the series, and we don't get to see them in action, ever. Despite their namesake, it seems like they're pretty good -- when Ash first meets Casey, he upsets her by saying the Magikarp might win the pennant. He also says he's seen better swings on a playground than on the Electabuzz, and that is a pretty good baseball burn.
Bonus: Team Rocket's company club?
Team Rocket must have some kind of inter-office league at least, based on Jesse's leg kick and stirrup sock game alone:
Got any other Pokemon baseball Easter eggs? Let us know in the comments.