Cal Ripken Jr. continued his diplomatic tour of Japan today, visiting Ofunato, the area hardest hit by the March earthquake and tsunami. You can read Ripken's reflections here, and MASNsports.com will post a YouTube video tomorrow of his trip to the region.
Ripken wrote in his blog that nothing prepared him for the devastation he saw - photos in the slideshow bear out the incredible level of destruction in the area - and that he hoped the clinics planned for Japanese children would help the affected in their recovery.
"Soon, we will be conducting clinics for kids who lost so much and it will be even more important for us to see that they have fun, smile and laugh," Ripken wrote. "I hope that our being there gives them a little break from the realities of the day and lets them know that people from around the world care about them and the Japanese people overall."
The trip will provide an opportunity for the Iron Man to reconnect with youth players who visited his complex in Aberdeen earlier this year.
Check back tomorrow for another installment of Ripken's video blog.
Programming note: Ripken will call into MASN's "The Mid-Atlantic Sports Report," hosted by Amber Theoharis and Roch Kubatko, at 6:10 p.m. tonight.