Is the added weight a problem?
Outfielder Suzuki Seiya (29, Chicago Cubs), who is a key force, has become uncertain about joining the Japanese national team. Because of left flank pain. On the 26th (Korean time), he was unable to play an exhibition game against the San Francisco Giants. 4-It was a game that was scheduled to start as a left fielder.
The Japanese national team is very tense. It is not known whether he should even consider resigning from the national team, but the future schedule has become unclear. He was scheduled to board a flight to Japan on March 2 and join the national team. There is already a plan B story in preparation for the situation where Suzuki cannot join.
Matsumoto Go (30, Nippon Ham Fighters) and Shiomi Yasutaka (30, Yakult Swallows), who ranked first in batting in the Pacific League last year, are being discussed as replacement candidates. Last year, Matsumoto recorded a batting average of .347 – 3 homers – 44 RBIs, and Shiomi recorded a batting average of .270 – 16 homers – 54 RBIs last year.
Suzuki was the only right-handed hitter among the five outfielders of the Japanese national team. If a replacement is needed, it seems that right-handed hitters will be considered first, but both Matsumoto and Shiomi are right-handed hitters.
Suzuki and Yoshida Masataka (30, Boston Red Sox), Lars Nutba (26, St. Louis Cardinals), Kondo Kensuke (30), and Shuto Ukyo (27, Softbank Hawks) were named as outfielders. Among them, Suzuki, Yoshida, and Nutba, who belong to major league clubs, are the main outfielders. Yoshida was expected to play in left field, Nutba in center field, and Suzuki in right field.
Suzuki is a veteran who participated in the 2017 WBC, the 2019 Premier 12, and the 2020 Tokyo Olympics as a representative. He has extensive international competition experience and is strong in clutch situations. He has been mentioned as a potential fifth hitter following No. 2 Shohei Ohtani (29, LA Angels), No. 3 Yoshida, and No. 4 Munetaka Murakami (23, Yakult).
Transferred from Hiroshima Carp to Chicago Cubs last year. He signed a five-year, $85 million contract. The first year of his transfer, he had a batting average of 2.6 with 2 runs, 14 home runs, and 46 RBIs in 111 games. He was judged to have adapted well. Right after the opening, he played a big role, but then stagnated.
After moving to the major leagues, the number of home runs plummeted. He hit 38 home runs in 2021, right before advancing to the major leagues, and a total of 176 home runs for six years from 2016 to 2021 – an average of 29.3, but it was reduced by more than half. He even suffered an injury at the beginning of the season. 메이저사이트
Suzuki, who had been preparing for his second season as an assistant referee, increased his weight by nearly 10 kg in the off-season and focused on weight training. He was conscious of his reduced home runs and built up his muscles. He did not participate in the Japanese national team and tried to focus on training with his team. With the persuasion of national team coach Hideki Kuriyama and major league players such as Ohtani and Darvish Yu (37, San Diego Padres) deciding to join, it was unavoidable.
He surprised the team officials by participating in the spring camp with a muscular body of 1m80-103kg. Japanese media analyzed that rapid weight gain and changes in muscle mass could be the cause of pain. If the side pain is severe, it is impossible to swing and throw normally.
With three major league outfielders missing, the Japanese national team played two practice games against Softbank on the 25th and 26th. Due to the lack of outfielders, a temporary support player was appointed. In the game on the 26th, infielder Kazumi Okamoto (27, Yomiuri Giants) started as a left fielder to prepare for emergencies.
Kondo, a backup outfielder, swung hard in two practice games against his team. He went 2-for-2 with one walk on the 25th, and went 2-for-2 with one walk on the 26th. 4 at-bats, 4 hits, 2 walks, 100% batting average and on base.
If Suzuki leaves the national team or joins in an incomplete state, Kondo is likely to be used. Although his slugging power is inferior to that of Suzuki, he can play in all positions in the outfield. Last year, he recorded a batting average of .302, 8 homers, and 41 RBIs, and transferred from Nippon Ham to Softbank as a free agent.
Meanwhile, Murakami, who hit ’56 homers’ last year, hit 4 times in 2 games, recording no hits and 3 walks in 4 at-bats without an RBI. The Japanese national team won 8-4 on the 25th and 4-2 on the 26th. In the game on the 26th, he gave up 2 points in the first inning and was pulled, then tied the score in the 5th inning and succeeded in reversing in the 9th inning.