While American baseball has been content to allow celebrities and presidents to throw out the ceremonial first pitch during Major League games, Japan has innovated by inviting the undead to do the same.
In a game between the Nippon-Ham Fighters and the Yakult Swallows this past weekend, Sadako—the creepy little girl who terrorized viewers of a haunted VHS tape in 1998’s The Ring (and its 2002 U.S. remake)—appeared on the stadium’s monitors before idling out to the pitcher’s mound. The batter? Kayako, the ghostly apparition from 2002’s Ju-On: The Grudge.
As the cheerleaders ran away in horror, Sadako wound up and delivered a pitch that Kayako was able to crack; her undead son, Toshio, ran to first base in her place before all of them were carted off by team mascots.
The stunt was intended to promote the July release of Kōji Shiraishi's Sadako vs. Kayako, a horror movie mash-up in the vein of Freddy vs. Jason. Their on-field encounter joins a Kayako Instagram account and Sadako scaring people at Osaka’s Universal Studios as part of a highly creative marketing effort. And yes, Sadako is pretty creepy even in broad daylight.