The 2023 World Baseball Classic (WBC) Japan team is stamping their feet at the arrival of major leaguers late.
Japan’s Nikkan Sports reported on the 29th that “Japanese national team manager Hideki Kuriyama once again appealed for the early joining of a major leaguer.”
In Korea, Ha-seong Kim (San Diego Padres) and Tommy Hyeon-su Edman (St. Louis Cardinals) have already been confirmed to join the team. Lee Kang-chul (KT Wiz) coach of the national team said in an interview on the 27th that he would join the team during the Gocheok Dome training (starting on March 1). Edmund is yet to be decided.
The WBC does not place restrictions on the participation of MLB players unless there are special reasons such as injuries. However, participation in the national team training camp is not compulsory. The club is trying to delay the selection of the national team as much as possible for reasons of injury prevention and team training. Manager Lee Kang-cheol said, “According to the rules, major leaguers are allowed to (play) from the official practice game. I have to check, but I know that I can’t play in my own practice game.”
In Japan, the situation is no better. A total of five major leaguers were selected for the WBC national team. Shohei Ohtani (LA Angels), Yu Darvish (San Diego Padres), Seiya Suzuki (Chicago Cubs), Masataka Yoshida (Boston Red Sox), and Lars Nuthba (St. Louis Cardinals) were named. Among them, the positions of Suzuki, Yoshida, and Nutba are the same as outfielders. If these three join late, it will be difficult to proceed with the evaluation match. 스포츠토토
Japan selected a total of four outfielders for this national team. The other is Kensuke Kondo, who plays for the Softbank Hawks. Even with Shuto Ukyo (Softbank Hawks), the “fifth outfielder” capable of both infield and outfield, one person is not enough. The Japanese national team will start joint training in Miyazaki Prefecture on the 17th of next month and will play an evaluation match with Softbank Hawks (February 25-26) and Chunichi (March 3-4), but it is difficult to operate the normal power. all. Currently, the only opportunity for major leaguers to join and test their best is the evaluation match against the Hanshin Tigers and Orix on the 6th and 7th.
The anxiety of the Japanese national team, which aims to regain the summit, grows. When all three outfielders arrive late, it can affect the defense. Each team is different, and Nutba, who broke the Japanese national team’s pure-blood principle, is a ‘Japanese big leaguer’ with a Japanese mother. Japanese communication is not smooth. “It will be difficult to learn Japanese in a month, but I will do my best,” Nutba said.
According to Nikkan Sports, Nippon Professional Baseball (NPB) is said to be proposing and negotiating a plan to distribute player injury insurance money in installments. Coach Kuriyama said, “I haven’t heard any answer yet. I’m also preparing for (in the event of an early joining failure),” he said. “The players’ intentions should be reflected in a really good tournament (WBC). The status of the competition will also increase,” he said.