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Hanshin Tigers may be free of Colonel Sanders' greasy curse

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kfc460.jpgWith the baseball season rapidly approaching, we're doomed to hear more and more each day about the 101-year drought since the Cubs' last World Series victory and the curse that supposedly surrounds the team.

But the Cubs certainly aren't the only squad believed to be under some magical spell preventing them from reaching the promised land. And, when you compare their mystical plight to that of the Hanshin Tigers, it almost seems boring

After all, the Cubs' problems have nothing to do with Colonel Sanders.
A statue of the fast food magnate was tossed into a river by overzealous fans after a particularly rousing 1985 victory. For 24 years, efforts to find the monument at the bottom of the silty body of water had been fruitless. Until recently.

From The Mainichi Daily News:

"A statue of Kentucky Fried Chicken's Colonel Sanders tossed into Osaka's Dotonbori River some 24 years ago by rowdy Hanshin Tigers fans has been discovered.

The Colonel's upper body, minus the hands, was discovered on Tuesday evening by divers checking for unexploded bombs as part of riverside pedestrian walkway improvement works. The figure's legs and right hand were discovered Wednesday morning.

The Colonel ended up at the bottom of the river in 1985, when delirious Hanshin Tigers fans celebrating the team's first Central League title in 21 years decided the figure bore a striking resemblance to Tigers slugger Randy Bass and, lifting it off its base in front of the Dotonbori Kentucky Fried Chicken franchise, gave the Colonel a victory toss. The fans put a little too much energy into the toss, and the Colonel Sanders figure went over the railing of the Ebisu Bridge and into the river. Since the statue's victory dive into the Dotonbori, searches for the statue were undertaken, but none with any success.

The Hanshin Tigers have not won the Japan Series since 1985, a fact attributed by some to the "Curse of Colonel Sanders."

The discovery of the chicken-enthusiasts likeness has predictably ignited a flame of intense optimism amongst the Hanshin faithful.

"We'll be number one in Japan this year for sure," they say.

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This leaves so many more questions than it answers: Why was there a Colonel Sanders statue in Japan? Why did they need to check for bombs under the sidewalk?

^^^ Because there are more KFC joints in Tokyo than any city in the USA.

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This page contains a single entry by Kyle Koster published on March 11, 2009 10:15 AM.

Fanning the flame: Nielsen says Cubs more popular than Sox was the previous entry in this blog.

Chicago Sports Week in Review: What not to do if you ever meet Paula Faris is the next entry in this blog.

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