The new Japanese major leaguer for the Boston Red Sox changes public opinion and starts a new season.
Boston signed a five-year, $90 million contract with Masataka Yoshida, a Japanese outfielder who applied for a major league posting in December last year. It was a large contract worth more than 100 million dollars, including the transfer fee (approximately 15.37 million dollars) to the former team, Orix Buffaloes.
Among the local media and front desks of other 메이저놀이터clubs, there was a series of evaluations that $100 million was too overpaid. Although Yoshida is a hitter who achieved the league batting king and OPS 1st place for two consecutive years in NPB from 2020 to 2021, there is a question mark as to whether he is a hitter worth $100 million in the major leagues.
What changed the negative public opinion about him was the WBC, which he participated in before starting the season with a new team. Yoshida, who hesitated to play before moving to the major leagues, played an active part in this tournament with 9 hits in 22 at-bats (2 homers), 13 RBIs, 5 runs, a batting average of 0.409, a 0.727 on-base percentage, an OPS of 1.258 in 7 games, and achieved a new record for the most RBIs in a single WBC tournament. .
Yoshida played a decisive role in the semifinal game against Mexico, especially with a superior three-run four that tied the score in the seventh inning. Prior to the tournament, Yoshida, who stated the reason for participating as “an opportunity to show the potential of Japanese baseball as the world’s No. 1”, showed off his amazing batting ability even though he did not win the MVP of the tournament due to Shohei Ohtani (LA Angels).
Every time Yoshida played an active role, the Boston team was also excited. Boston appealed to fans by posting photos or videos of Yoshida’s performance on social media, along with Yoshida’s nickname of “Macho Man” as Yoshida scored an RBI or hit a home run. The reaction of the fans has also changed to positive.
Yoshida, who tasted victory in the final on the 22nd, joined the Boston spring camp held in Florida, USA on the 23rd. Now is the time to prove his abilities in his demonstration games and the regular season that opens on the 31st of this month. It is noteworthy whether Yoshida, who is taking on a new challenge after receiving the energy of winning the WBC, will be able to show off his RBI ability in the new league as well.