[[caption-width-right:230:Our hero and his class.]]

Koichi Kawato. [[WideEyedIdealist Young, idealistic, almost foolish]] Japanese literature teacher. On his first day at Futakotamagawa High School (also known by the nickname "Nikogaku"), he's assigned as the homeroom teacher of the baseball club, the toughest delinquents around. They cut class, smoke, have sex in the clubhouse, and haven't even been playing baseball for six months because of a bench brawl. [[SaveOurStudents Kawato decides to turn the team around]] and head for the Koshien, but the boys aren't having any of it. However, some of them still want to play baseball.

That's the beginning of ''Rookies'', the second and most famous manga by Masanori Morita (who authored ''Manga/RokudenashiBlues'' and worked as Tetsuo Hara's assistant on ''Manga/FistOfTheNorthStar'') With its realistic and detailed art and intense and well-written baseball games, ''Rookies'' is not well known in the west, but a classic in Japan and translated into several languages. It was adapted into a successful [[LiveActionAdaptation J-Drama]] in 2008.


* TheAce: Akaboshi thinks he's one, until he sees all the hard work that the rest of the team puts in. In truth he just has well-rounded stats and can play any position.
* ADayInTheLimelight: Nearly every member of the team gets a couple of chapters focusing on them.
* ArmorPiercingQuestion: "What is your dream?"
* AnAesop: Follow your dreams, and you will achieve happiness.
* BadassTeacher: Kawato. He doesn't get to use it often, but he's got some serious martial arts moves.
* BerserkButton: Do NOT, I repeat do NOT, mess with people's dreams near Kawato. He will be enraged.
* TheBerserker: Shinjo at the beginning. His response to nearly anything that angers him is beating the shit out of someone.
* TheBigGuy: Shinjo, Hiyama, and Hiratsuka, with Shinjo being the biggest in terms of sheer power.
* ButtMonkey: Poor Hiratsuka.
* CastOfSnowflakes
* CharacterDevelopment: Not only the entire baseball team, but Principal Murayama and Vice Principal Ikebe get their moments.
* CoolTeacher: Kawato. Full stop. He is shown repeatedly to be the only teacher who really cares about his students, memorizing their names even before he talks to them.
%%* {{Delinquents}}: The entire baseball team. Aniya in particular deserves an honorable mention.
%%* {{Fanservice}}: Fujita-sensei.
%%* FragileSpeedster: Sekikawa.
%%* HiddenDepths: Principal Murayama. [[spoiler: He was captain of the school baseball team back in his day, which is why he hates the current baseball team so much.]]
* KansaiRegionalAccent: The Yoga Daiichi team, especially their coach. In the scanlations, [[AccentAdaptation this gets changed to a thick Southern accent.]]
* ManlyTears: Mikoshiba in particular provides a lot of these, occasionally crossing over into InelegantBlubbering.
* MartialPacifist: Kawato prefers talking to fighting, but when someone tries to attack him, they are going DOWN.
** [[spoiler: Shinjo]] may be developing into this as well, not wanting to fight if he can avoid it, but not hesitating to put someone down if the situation calls for it.
* NiceGuy: Kakefu-sensei, no matter how much he tries to be mean.
* OnlySaneMan: Relatively speaking, at least, we have Mikoshiba. Okada plays this at times too.
* OnlySixFaces: Fiercely averted. Every main character has an extremely distinctive face and expression, which is especially impressive considering that they all dress the same way (School or baseball uniforms.)
* PuttingTheBandBackTogether: The first arc of the story focuses on Kawato's effort to motivate the baseball team to actually play.
* TheQuietOne: Shinjo. Easily speaks the least among the team members, and true to trope, he's TheBigGuy on the team, with hints of GeniusBruiser with the talk of his hidden potential being thrown around.
* RousingSpeech: Kawato frequently hands these out. His favorite seems to be DareToBeBadass.
* SaveOurTeam: What Kawato was hired to do.
* SmallNameBigEgo: Kakefu from the social studies department.
* TheStoic: Ironically, [[spoiler: Shinjo, after he stops being TheBerserker]].
* TohokuRegionalAccent: One female student is so shy she almost never speaks. When super-teacher Kawato tries to get her to come out of her shell, he discovers it's because she's so ashamed of her Tohoku accent. He gets her to help out with the baseball team a bit, and it turns out her fears of mockery are entirely unfounded the guys end up falling all over themselves over how cute her accent is.
* WideEyedIdealist: Kawato, lampshaded repeatedly.