Episode two of Taishou Yakyuu Musume brought a full complement of players to fulfil Akiko's hopes of creating a girl's baseball team, which means that it's time to make things official and turn this makeshift group into a proper school club.
Surprisingly, this comes about relatively easily, thanks to the persuasive powers of the girl's teacher, a snappy name for the club (Ouka-kai, with a wider goal to encourage westernising the school), and an interruption from the school's headmistress. Indeed, it's this intervention that gives the club the go-ahead to do its thing, albeit without any funding and with nothing more than a run-down old shack to use as a club room.
Regardless, this new semi-official status means that the girls can practice properly, with some reasonably impressive results. Their next step from here is a practice game against a local boy's middle school, which also stirs up some questions of romance for both Akiko (as we learn just why she was so passionate to create this baseball team) and Koume (for whom an accidental meeting turns into a misunderstanding and a serious case of unrequited love). Needless to say the girls get thrashed, but not before showing some glimmers of future potential.
While I'm still left hungry for a little more depth of characterisation from this series (although I suppose Akiko's character is getting built up here to some degree), I can't deny that this was another fun episode that was pretty pleasurable to watch - The quick pacing of the episode from the creation of the club through to practicing and then onto an actual game meant that there was never time to get bored or wish things would hurry along, and choosing to portray the harsh reality of playing a against a team of better trained and better equipped boys rather than going for some magical victory or near-victory keeps things both interesting and realistic. All in all then, it's a net win for this series so far in terms of keeping my interest, although I don't see it progressing from the realms of fun into anything deeper in terms of drama or the characters on show, which you could argue is a wasted opportunity given the subject matter.