Ohtani among stars rostered for 2023 WBC duties

The Yomiuri Shimbun
Samurai Japan manager Hideki Kuriyama, right, and Los Angeles Angels two-way star Shohei Ohtani pose for a photo in Minato Ward, Tokyo, on Friday.

Samurai Japan manager Hideki Kuriyama on Friday announced the names of 12 of the 30 players who will represent Japan at the 2023 the World Baseball Classic in March, including Shohei Ohtani of the Los Angeles Angels, at a press conference in Tokyo.

Ohtani, who was at the press conference, said: “I only want to win and think about winning. This is my first WBC, so I want to have fun while doing my best.”

Yu Darvish of the San Diego Padres and Seiya Suzuki of the Chicago Cubs will be participating for the second time. Record-setting slugger Munetaka Murakami of the Tokyo Yakult Swallows and other talented young players were also selected.

The first-round Tokyo Pool, sponsored by The Yomiuri Shimbun and other organizations, in which Japan will participate, will begin March 9 at the Tokyo Dome.

A round-robin tournament will be held among China, South Korea, the Czech Republic, and Australia, with the top two teams advancing to the quarterfinals.