A meme of baseball bats being sold in a store in the Philippines has sparked an interesting discussion on the popularity of baseball in the country.
Not for hitting home runs: The photo, which shows the bats being marketed as “personal defense weapons” by a popular hardware store, has become a viral meme generating thousands of reactions and shares.
- The image was first posted on IWSMT website with the title, “Baseball isn’t popular in the Philippines, so in Manila, bats are marketed as personal defense weapons.”
- It gained wider attention after Facebook page Memes and Shitpost reposted the image last week with the caption, “Wait, What?”
- Aptly named for their intended purpose, the bats were labeled as the equalizer, the bodyguard and the defender, as one user on Reddit pointed out.
- Filipino users have confirmed that the hardware store indeed markets the bats as such.
- Commenters on social media have expressed amusement and fascination over the post, with some Filipinos saying in jest that they didn’t know the bats were used for sports.
- For others, the marketing strategy made sense since the bats are technically used for defense, even in Europe and the U.S.
Filipino baseball community reacts:
Members of the local baseball community have attested that the game remains a popular sport in the country, SPIN reported.
Decline over time: The popularity of the sport reportedly declined in the next few decades due to lack of infrastructure and support from the government.
- The Philippines did not join in any international competition from 1971 to 1994.
- While basketball and boxing have eventually emerged as the modern day game of choice among Filipino sports fans, baseball still reportedly draws crowds when tournaments are hosted in the countryside.
- There is currently no commercial baseball league in the country, but national tournaments such as the Palarong Pambansa and inter-collegiate game fests such as the UAAP continue to include the sport in the competitions.
- Filipinos have also remained competitive baseball players internationally. Just recently, the Philippine Blu Boys took the gold medal in the 30th Southeast Asian Games, which was held in December.