Oddball baseball manga “Gurazeni,” a hit with readers and professional baseball players alike, will be adapted into its first animated TV series, premiering in 2018.

The anime will be satellite channel Sky PerfecTV!’s first original anime production.

The manga series digs deep into the merit-based structure of Japanese professional baseball, where an individual player’s annual salary is determined by his performance. Many active players are also fascinated by the realistic portrayals of their industry, focusing on the business side of things.

Written by Yuji Moritaka and illustrated by Keiji Adachi, “Gurazeni” won the 37th Kodansha Manga Award and also ranked second on a list of top titles for male readers of the “Kono Manga ga Sugoi!” (This manga is amazing!) guidebook in 2012.

In addition to the original manga series running in the weekly Morning comic anthology, a spin-off series about the behind-the-scenes of the anime adaptation is also published in the magazine.

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To learn more about the latest developments in Japanese anime, visit the official site of Anime Anime (http://animeanime.jp/).