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FILLING IN THE GAPS ... Yoshinobu Yamamoto debut 3/21

Baseball news from Japan and Asia

FILLING IN THE GAPS ... Yoshinobu Yamamoto debut 3/21

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There is an obvious gap in the comments from our former NPB stars and the English-speaking media. I will attempt to fill the cracks in those verbal exchanges, as time in my schedule allows.

March 21, following Dodgers 15-11 loss to the Padres, in Seoul

Dodgers rookie pitcher Yoshinobu Yamamoto spoke after taking a loss in his major league debut:

“The problem was I had trouble with my control from the start of the game … audio missing … and that led to runs scoring. So I want to, as quickly as possible, take a good look at what happened, reset and look toward the next game.”
The right-hander was then fielded a question about his reputation for having strong command and how he could return to form.

“My control when I had to go into the set position was off-kilter, and I know exactly the area I have to correct, so I’ll use the advice from the pitching coach and move forward as I get ready for the next game.”
A reporter then asked the former Orix Buffaloes and Japan ace about his big-game reputation and his nerves prior to his big league debut. The question in Japanese wasn’t quite in line with the original English query, so the answer was somewhat off target.
“Well, losing the game is very frustrating and that’s a big part of how I feel. I also feel a sense of responsibility for that. The season still has a long way to go, though, and moving forward, I want to pitch well and contribute the team.”
A Japanese reporter asked Yamamoto about the Ippei Mizuhara gambling scandal and said he personally had the sense the atmosphere surrounding the team was different than usual. He then asked Yamamoto what the direct impact on him was.
“Today was my day to pitch, so I didn’t have time to talk to anyone. I don’t have any information and I don’t know [much].”
As clarification, the reporter followed up by asking Yamamoto about the poor result maybe being because of something else. Said Yamamoto: “We were just focused on trying to win the game, and nothing changed about the way we went about that.”
Another Japanese reporter inquired about the pitch clock and how that affected the new Dodgers hurler.
“Of course I was aware of the pitch clock during my outing, but it wasn’t really a problem for me.”

JOHN E. GIBSON is a fluent Japanese speaker who has been covering Nippon Professional Baseball for more than 20 years. He hosts a weekly podcast [on iTunes and Google Podcasts] and is a knowledgeable writer/sports editor at The Japan News

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