I leave Korea tomorrow to return to New York, but I'm taking R2D2 with me. I had to buy an extra seat on the plane but it was worth it. Being in Korea during the WBC has been an interesting experience. When Korea is playing, any public place (malls, restaurants, train stations) with a television (there's a lot of LCD displays here) is broadcasting the game. People stop whatever it is they're doing in order to watch the tournament. I know that a lot of people in the U.S. have a distaste for the WBC but people worldwide are paying attention and that is the point.
The U.S. is strange about international competitions. We generally assume we should win (i.e. basketball) but don't care that much. We root for our favorite pro teams but don't pay attention when our country plays internationally. The Olympics continues to drop in ratings every four years. It's unfortunate because these tournaments are important to a lot of people worldwide and it makes us look like a nation of douches.
But that's besides the point, my point here is that the WBC is a big deal here in Korea, certainly in Puerto Rico, The Dominican, Japan, Cuba, and I imagine a lot of other places. Baseball has lost the Olympics and this is the only true international stage for the sport. I, for one, am enjoying it.