“Is there a player who is better than Ohtani? There’s no way that’s the case.”
I was looking forward to the moment when “baseball genius” Mike Trout (32, LA Angels) meets teammate Shohei Ohtani (29) as an enemy. Trout said in a ZOOM interview with local US reporters on the 21st (Korean time), “Ohtani said that he was not the best player in relation to the Japanese national team. It doesn’t make sense that there is a player better than Ohtani. But Ohtani He will know his teammates well. I am looking forward to playing against the Japanese national team.”
Trout will participate as the captain of the US team in the 2023 World Baseball Classic (WBC), which will be held in March. Trout is a major league outfielder who was selected as the American League MVP three times in 2014, 2016 and 2019, and signed a 12-year, $426.5 million contract with the Angels ahead of the 2019 season. He is the only player in major league history to exceed the $400 million contract value. He was selected for the first time as a WBC representative.
Ohtani is a trusted colleague of Trout, who boasts a tremendous career. He appeared like a comet in the major leagues in 2018 and established himself as a two-time superstar. In 2021, he recorded 138 hits, 46 home runs, 100 runs batted in, and 103 runs as a hitter, and won 9 wins, 130⅓ innings pitched, 156 strikeouts, and a 3.18 earned run average as a pitcher, winning the American League MVP. The American media expects that if Ohtani becomes a free agent at the end of this season, he will be able to easily pass his $400 million contract and break Ma’s $500 million barrier.
The moment when Trout and Ohtani, the MVP duo who lead the Angels’ center lineup, meet as enemies, is likely to be of great interest to baseball fans. In order for the United States and Japan to face each other, both countries must advance to the championship round (semifinals). The U.S. is in Group C with Mexico, Colombia, Canada, and the U.K., and will play in the U.S. from the first round to the championship round. Japan is organized in Group B with Korea, China, Australia, and the Czech Republic, and the first round and quarterfinal tournaments are held at the Tokyo Dome in Japan, and after reaching the semifinals, they board a plane to the United States.
World No. 3 USA and No. 1 Japan are being discussed as strong candidates to win this tournament. The United States is trying to win the championship for the second time in a row following the 4th championship in 2017, and Japan is aiming for the third championship since 2006 and 2009. 메이저놀이터
The United States formed a super-luxurious lineup that included Trout, Mookie Betts (LA Dodgers), Pete Alonso (New York Mets), Paul Goldschmidt and Nolan Arenado (above St. Louis Cardinals), Tim Anderson (Chicago White Sox), and Japan. Do Ohtani, Yu Darvish (San Diego Padres), Seiya Suzuki (Chicago Cubs), Loki Sasaki (Chiba Lotte), and Munetaka Murakami (Yakult) built the strongest team.
Trout and Ohtani, representing their respective countries, stood in front of reporters and shouted their goal of “winning”. Can the U.S. and Japan face each other in the championship round and compete for the championship as the two players hoped?