Darvish Yu, who won 188 wins in the US and Japan, climbed the mound for the first time since joining the San Diego Padres. Although he pitched for minor leaguers, the content was not bad. And the reason why he performed so poorly in the World Baseball Classic (WBC) was also revealed.
Darvish participated in the 2023 WBC wearing the uniform of the Japanese national team for the first time in 14 years since 2009. Expectations were high for him, as he won 188 career victories in the major leagues and Nippon Professional Baseball, but his performance was not very good.
Darvish did not train in San Diego’s spring camp this year, but in Miyazaki, where the Japanese national team camp was held. Due to the regulations of Major League players, Darvish never appeared in a practice game, and he was unable to stand on the mound even in the evaluation match because he was about to start the Korean game. And his concerns about his lack of practical experience became a reality.
Darvish climbed the mound as a starting pitcher in a confrontation with Korea on the 10th (hereinafter Korean time) and hit a home run with Yang Eui-ji, 3 hits (1 home run), 1 walk, 1 strikeout and 3 runs (2 earned) in 3 innings. Afterwards, Darvish, who moved to a bullpen pitcher, left a disappointment with 2 hits (1 home run), 1 strikeout and 1 run (1 earned) in 2 innings in the quarterfinal match against Italy.
In the final, he harvested a hold, but even this was not clean. Darvish took over the mound from Taisei (Yomiuri Giants) in the top of the 8th inning in the final match against the United States on the 22nd, leading 3-1. At that time, Darvish caught lead hitter Nolan Arenado with a fly ball from center fielder, but was attacked by follow-up hitter Kyle Schwaber with a 146km fastball on the 10th pitch and gave up a solo home run. Fortunately, the innings ended without any additional runs, but due to Darvish’s run, Japan was chased down to the bottom of the chin with a score of 3-2.
According to Japan’s ‘Sports Hochi’, on the 26th, Darvish confided the reason for his poor performance in the WBC national team. Darvish said, “Honestly, during the (Miyazaki) training camp, my back and left hip joint were not very good.”
‘Sports Hochi’ cited Camp Miyazaki as the background for Darvish’s sluggish performance in the WBC and his failure to find a normal condition so far. The media pointed out, “After moving to the major leagues in 2012, I have been adjusting every year in the warm state of Arizona, but this year, the adjustment did not proceed as I had thought while building my body in the chilly Miyazaki.” 메이저사이트
Darvish also explained, “There was a long flight (to the US and Japan) and it was colder in Miyazaki than I thought. I had been doing it here (Arizona, USA) for 10 years, so my body wasn’t that good.”
Darvish won’t start for San Diego’s opener due to poor form at the WBC. First of all, I plan to build a body step by step. And on the 26th, he threw 64 pitches in 4 innings to check his condition against Double-A, a minor league affiliated with the Cleveland Guardians, held in Peoria, Arizona, USA. Darvish allowed three hits and scored one run, but struck out eight. His highest speed was 153 km.
Darvish said, “I was anxious because I was not in good condition until yesterday (25th), but today I got a good form after a long time. I slept a lot for the past 3 days, so I feel much better.” I am going to throw a ball. As long as the team is good, I am not anxious anymore,” he said, revealing his strong will to join the big leagues.
[Yu Darvish during the days of the WBC national team in Japan. Photo = My Daily DB]