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WBC: News and notes from March 23rd

by on Mar.23, 2009 @ 12:57 pm, under WBC

...The Finals game between Japan and Korea is set to start at 9:38pm EST.

...The starters for the game: Hisashi Iwakuma for Japan and Jung Keun Bong for Korea.

...Ichiro Suzuki's thoughts on fate playing a part in Japan playing Korea in the Finals:

"That just can't be the reason anymore. And haven't we already had enough of Korea, especially after having faced them 4 times already?"

...This article mentions how MLB umps didn't make any bad calls this time around, except for a few bad strike/ball calls. One pitch that seems to be getting a lot of attention is the 6th pitch that was called a ball against David Wright in the third inning. However, the article also mentions that Matsuzaka "re-gained" the pitch when he struck out Wright looking in his next at bat in the fifth.

...Seems Akinori Iwamura had a feeling that Japan would beat the US the minute Roberts lead-off the game with a home run.

Said Iwamura, "During the first WBC, Ichiro lead-off with a home run and we lost. And so I thought that perhaps we would win today."

...It seems Japan was set to use Yu Darvish in the 9th from a fairly early stage due to Kyuji Fujikawa's relative ineffectiveness.

Said Darvish, "I was prepared for a number of different things to happen. And I'll be ready tomorrow if they need me."

...Munenori Kawasaki was in the starting line-up against the US for the first time this WBC and went 2-for-4 with 2 runs and an RBI.

Said Kawasaki, "I've been in the starting line-up from the bench every game since the very first round."

...Seiichi Uchikawa was involved in a (very) minor accident during practice prior to the Japan / USA game. While taking fielding practice, a ball got away from Uchikawa and struck him in the chin. Fortunately, it was weakly hit and didn't result in anything more than a few light-hearted jabs from team mates like, "Hey, nice play with your chin!"

...Hisashi Iwakuma, Kenji Johjima, and the rest of the catching corps were sitting together in the stands for the Korea / Venezuela game on Saturday.

...Ichiro Suzuki took out all 14 of the position players to dinner on Saturday night, something he also did during the first WBC.

A team rep said, "It's just something the team decided to do again this year after a team dinner led to a victory during the first WBC. And just like last time, Ichiro took care of all the details."

...Sadaharu Oh will be involved in the Opening Ceremonies of the Finals game tonight. As the winning manager from the 1st WBC, he will help bring out the Championship Trophy for display near home plate.

Fernando Valenzuela
and Tommy Lasorda are also set to throw out the ceremonial first pitches.

One comment on “WBC: News and notes from March 23rd

  1. Phil Lowry

    Will Japan make a serious effort to host a Second Round pool or the Semi-Finals / Final Round in the 2013 WBC ? It seems that as a two-time champion, in 2006 and 2009, Japan deserves to host more than just another First Round pool.

    Also, will Japan consider hosting a pool in a traditional excellent ballpark like Koshien or Meiji Jingu rather than in the sterile antiseptic carpeted ugly TokyoDome ?

    There are logistical difficulties associated with Japan hosting a Second Round or the Semi-Finals/Final Round, but it does not seem fair to have Japan win the WBC twice in a row, and still have to play all Second Round and Semi-Finals/Final Round games over in the USA.

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