Ohtani Shohei (29, Los Angeles Angels), who led the Japanese baseball team to the semifinals at the World Baseball Classic (WBC), draws attention by mentioning Korea.
On the 20th (hereinafter referred to as Korean time), after completing the entire national team training at Londipo Park in Miami, Florida, USA, in an interview with Japanese media such as ‘Sports Nippon’, Ohtani talked about the meaning of the WBC tournament and mentioned Korea.
The WBC, which started in 2006 and celebrated its 5th this year, is increasing its authority with a large number of major league players participating. Ohtani also said, “I think we are definitely improving. It seems that we are getting closer to a prestigious competition with each repetition. Any country will feel the reward of making it a better tournament. I can make Japanese fans happy by winning a great tournament.”
In response to the question that baseball is spreading widely among Japanese children with the WBC as an opportunity, Ohtani said, “As well as Japanese fans, Taiwan and Korea unfortunately lost in the preliminaries this time, but if we (Japan) win and win, we will do it next time.” I think I might have it,” he replied.
Both Korea and Taiwan swallowed regret at this WBC due to their early elimination in the first round, but Ohtani said that they would promise the next time seeing the good performance of Japan, an Asian country.
Ohtani said, “There are not only Korea and Taiwan, but also China. I think there is a possibility that baseball can grow even bigger in the future, as is the case with Japan (where the championship has not yet been confirmed). To do that, winning is also the most important thing,” he said, revealing his will to win the WBC even for the expansion of Asian baseball. 바카라
Japan will compete with Mexico in the semi-finals held at Londipor Park on the 21st to advance to the final. Ohtani, who will be the designated hitter, said, “I am only thinking about winning. He believes that the pitchers will block it, so the key is how well the hitters do it. Whether it’s a fastball or a change ball, if I swing properly, there will be no problem.” He showed a sense of responsibility as a hitter.
Ohtani, who seemed to have finished his WBC schedule as a pitcher after starting the quarterfinal against Italy on the 16th (4⅔ innings, 2 runs, 71 pitches), showed his will to pitch in the bullpen when advancing to the final. He said, “I can’t start, but I want to prepare to throw as a salvation. The Angels club also listened to me and allowed me to do many things. As it is the last time, I will make a decision based on my physical condition.”
The WBC final will be held on the 22nd. The United States defeated Cuba 14-2 in the semifinals on the 20th and advanced to the final stage.