It was a ‘double sword’ recognized by the world. Shohei Ohtani (28, Los Angeles Angels), the tournament’s best player (MVP), who led Japan to victory in the 2023 World Baseball Classic (WBC), also won the All-Star tournament.
On the 22nd (Korean time) after the final between Japan and the United States, Ohtani was listed as the best pitcher and designated hitter in the all-star roster of the tournament, which was released through social media by the World Baseball Classic Organizing Committee. Ohtani, who could not give up on either of the baseballs he knows, “hit and throw”, took up both pitching and hitting in this tournament as well, and as a pitcher, he had an average ERA of 1.86 with 2 wins and 1 save in 3 games (9 ⅔ innings, 5 hits, 11 strikeouts, 2 runs). As a hitter, he recorded a batting average of 0.435 (10 hits in 23 at-bats) in 7 games, 1 home run, 8 RBIs and 9 runs, practicing ‘dream baseball’.안전놀이터
In the pitcher category, Ohtani’s teammate, Mexican left-hander Patrick Sandoval (Angels) and Cuban midfielder Miguel Romero (Gigantes de Carolina) were named. Sandoval, who held off the Japanese lineup in the semifinals with no runs in 4⅓ innings, started two games in this tournament and recorded an average ERA of 1.23 (6 hits, 8 strikeouts, 1 run in 7⅓ innings). Romero also played an active part with an average ERA of 2.08 (8 ⅔ innings, 7 hits, 13 strikeouts and 2 runs) in 5 games. Romero is also the pitcher with the most strikeouts in this tournament.
There were prominent major leaguers in the field. Venezuela’s Salvador Perez (Kansas City Royals), who recorded a batting average of 0.429, was selected as the best catcher, and ‘American Captain’ Mike Trout (Angels), who recorded 1 home run and 7 RBIs in 7 games, and Mexico’s OPS (1.507), which ranked 2nd overall (1.507) Randy Arosarena (Tampa Bay Rays) and Masataka Yoshida (Boston Red Sox), Japan’s giant with the most RBIs (13) in the tournament, were selected as All-Star outfielders. From Perez and Trout, who are in their 12th year in the big leagues, to Yoshida, who are in their first year in the big leagues, these are players who will continue their good energy in the league this season.
In addition, American shortstop Trey Turner (Philadelphia Phillies), Puerto Rican second baseman Javier Baez (Detroit Tigers), and Cuban third baseman Yoann tied the record for the most home runs in the tournament, which was set by Doosan Bears manager Lee Seung-yeop in 2006 by hitting five homers. Moncada (Chicago White Sox) and Taiwanese first baseman Zhang Yucheng (Boston Red Sox) filled the infield. Jang Wi-cheong, who caused controversy by refusing to be selected for the national team before the tournament, became a national hero with a batting average of 0.438 (7 hits in 16 at-bats), 2 homers, 8 RBIs and 5 runs in 4 games.