Thursday, February 9, 2017

MLB Cafe (Tokyo, Japan)

One of the places I never went to during my time in Japan was the MLB Cafe in Tokyo. It's near Suidobashi which is also where the Tokyo Dome is located.

I made plans to go the MLB Cafe with a contact who I met for the first time this past winter. They go by the name of Googol, and are a Mets fan (poor soul). They're also a Star Wars fanatic so we ended up talking about that a lot, more that stuff later.

After Googol and I met up at Akihabara, we went to the MLB Cafe. Googol knew the manager of the Cafe and I got to meet him. Apparently the manager is a former card collector who still collects Robinson Cano cards (Drew, you've got competition from around the world).

The cafe (it's more of a restaurant really) looks pretty nice. It reminded me of a T.G.I. Fridays with a lot more room and three big TV panels showing highlights of MLB games and one of the like nine baseball-themed movies playing.

I tried the MLB Cafe's very own "TOKYO Original Big Burger." By Japanese standards, it's big. By American standards, it's a passable lunch. Either way, it was pretty tasty.

I also tried this chocolate shake which was so sweet I could taste the diabetes with every drop. Luckily it's Japan so there wasn't a lot of this shake. Note to self, next time just go with water.

Anyway after our meal, Googol and I exchanged cards. I gave him a bunch of MiLB Mets stuff (mainly from Brooklyn). While Googol and the manager were ogling the cheerleaders page in the Cyclones program, I was looking through the cards I received.

I didn't buy any Bowman Draft this winter (I know right?!) so I did appreciate this Solak. It was accompanied by a Lynch and Thompson-Williams too.

The bulk of the cards I received were of the Star Wars variety. Googol prefers the live action films so they gave me the clone above and the following cards from the CGI cartoons.

Ahsoka Tano throughout the years.

Very cool villains.

CGI Lando.

Red blades.

A blue blade.

I actually already had these Kanan cards, so I felt like a chump for buying them with money when I was just going to get them for free.

The key card in the entire bag was this Taylor Gray autograph from 2016 Tek. Googol knows that I like Rebels and they generously gave it to me. Hopefully the stuff I got him from Brooklyn made up for it.

So after we had lunch at the cafe, Googol introduced me to a card shop in the vicinity. It's one of the card shops where people just come and bust boxes. Literally, one of the customers who was already there (who is a regular) dropped aprox. $700 in cash on a case of basketball cards while I was there.

The store didn't have anything in the way of singles, but what they did have were a lot of freebies. The thing about these stores where people buy stuff by the case loads is that they don't really pay attention to loose cards, especially if they're not hits. So at this shop there was a big table stacked with cards from products like 2015 Bowman Draft Asia Edition. Apparently none of the high rollers ever pick them up so the store owner just allowed me to take a huge stack of them for free. Free!

The result is that I got a quartet of Buehler Asia refs, and a fair number of other black refs too. As many of you will see in Zappings.

After that we went to a few more stores before parting ways.

All in all it was pretty fun. I wish I'd been able to take a pic of the front of the restaurant (or really any of the places I went to that day) but it slipped my mind.

I brought back some unused moist towelettes from the Cafe too. Anyone interested?

As always thanks for stopping by and take care :).


  1. Looks like an awesome time. I never got into the CGI Star Wars. It just didn't work for me.

    1. It was a fun time. Lots of food and cards. As for SW, don't sweat it, what I love about Star Wars is that it's so vast and nebulous that there's something for everybody.

  2. You are right about that place looking like a Fridays.

    When my town had a local card shop people would give me the non hits all the time. I loved it!

  3. Pretty cool place to visit! I like places like this. Hopefully it has a better fate than a lot of the ones like it in the US.

    1. I hope so too. From what I've heard it has another branch in central Tokyo so it sounds like it's doing okay for itself.

  4. Cool, i think i have been there as well last year when I visited the finals in Toyko Dome. Good memories !

  5. I once walked into a card shop like that... guys busting boxes and leaving stacks behind. It was a very good day.
    Looks like a fun meet up... I really like that their name was Googol. Pretty cool!
    Alright, you got to drop some knowledge on me. How do I watch Star Wars Evolution? I watched all of the Clone Wars and must see Evolution! You really piqued my interest with an older Ahsoka and young Lando. (Plus, don't hate on me for this, but I don't know who Kanan is. But from I've read on your blog, I know he's kind of a big deal.)

    1. It's actually called Star Wars Rebels. The series is available on a few outlets right now. Not sure if it's on Netflix though.

    2. I'll have to check into it. Thanks!

  6. Diabetes by the drop looks delicious! What's the other drink sitting on the table? Hopefully I'll make it out to Japan one day. If I do, I'd love to be able to drop $700 on cards at one of their card shops... but it's probably more likely that I'll just order a burger from the MLB Cafe.

    P.S. Cool Ezra autograph!

    1. Why spent $700 when the buyers are just going to leave the non-hits behind for free anyway ;)?

  7. I'm curious where this shop is - I don't know of any card shops around Tokyo Dome.

    Sounds like you had a nice time, anyway. I'll have to check that cafe out sometime.