Ohtani? Sasaki? The Japan that Korea needs to pay attention to is the ‘178cm Fireballer’

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In the 2023 World Baseball Classic (WBC), the team with the fastest average velocity was the Dominican Republic. It was followed by Japan, but the difference was narrow. Over the past 10 years, the preparations of Japanese baseball, which have been dazzling ‘speed-up’ without missing the world trend, eventually led to the splendid achievement of winning the tournament.

A total of 58 balls from the Japanese national team came out with balls over 100 miles per hour (161 km). This was the most among the 20 teams participating in this event. However, this was the share of Shohei Ohtani (LA Angels) and Rocky Sasaki (Chiba Lotte), who usually threw fastballs over 160 km. Although it was a great achievement, it was not the achievement of Japan as a whole.

Ohtani and Sasaki are proud of their robust physiques that would have made it hard to believe that they were Asians in the past. Ohtani is known for not training as much as her peers in middle school. It is because of the theory that too much training rather inhibits the growth of the body. Sasaki also underwent systematic training from childhood, and his team, Chiba Lotte, also paid much attention to training and conditioning rather than participating in games during his rookie days.

Throwing a ball over 100 miles requires such an innate physique. Not everyone throws 100 mph in Japan, which has excellent pitching power. So maybe we should pay more attention to Shota Imana (30, Yokohama), who was also a selection for the finals in Japan. Although he is small, he threw a fastball, and his velocity continued to rise.

According to Imanaga’s profile, his height is 178 cm and 83 kg. Rather than the clichéd expression of ‘common’, it is closer to the physical condition that is more difficult to find in Korean baseball, where the physique has grown. This is because pitchers who are less than 180 cm are rare these days. However, Imana threw a powerful fastball from his rookie days, and overcame the ups and downs for a while to grow into a pitcher equipped with a more powerful pitch.

In this WBC, Imanaga’s pitching surprised the world. This is because the tracking data is formidable. On the 23rd (Korean time), columnist Ino Sarris of the North American sports media ‘The Athletic’ announced the ranking of the ‘stuff+’ index based on players who threw 28 or more pitches per game among the players participating in the WBC. It is an effort to objectively see the ball position through a complicated calculation process, and Imanaga was the player who beat all the players and took first place.

Rather, Ohtani, who lost a run in the match against Italy, was ninth, and Sasaki, who threw a fastball of up to 164km, was 11th. Imanaga’s fastball and overall pitch meant that something needed to be looked at, independent of rankings and results.

The average velocity of Imanaga’s four-seam fastball in the final was 93.5 miles (about 150.5 km), which was the highest level among lefties participating in this tournament. In addition, the four-seam’s revolutions per minute (RPM) averaged 2555 times, which was excellent. Even in the major leagues, there are not many cases where a lefty has an average of 93.5 miles and an RPM of 2500. He also has excellent vertical movement here.

In fact, Imanaga’s pitching was a hot topic among domestic teams at the camp in Okinawa, Japan. There were quite a few opinions that the players fell in love with Imanaga’s pitching while watching the Japanese national team’s practice game in the evening.토토사이트 In the case of SSG veteran pitcher Noh Kyung-eun, he found the video himself and shared it with his junior left-handed pitchers. In particular, the players said that there are many things to learn about the arm swing and smooth shifting of the center of gravity.

Otani and Sasaki are monsters that are hard to come out of even in Japan. Rather than looking at them, we need to pay attention to the strengths of other players as well. Maybe they are better players for us to refer to.

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