Yoshitomo Tsutsugo, who has long been the main axis and captain of the Yokohama DeNA Baystars, has been assigned to the MLB Tampa Bay Rays from the 2020 season by the posting system.
Major challenges drawn from your childhood dreams
As a Baystars fan, in the same year that the team changed to the Yokohama DeNA Baystars in 2012, he has continued to buy and support replica uniforms in hopes of growing into a Japanese-made cannon that will lead the future team.
For many Baystars fans who knew his dream of taking on a major challenge, I think it’s an emotional feeling that “this time has finally come.”
By the way, the contract with Raise is $ 12 million for two years, and the high expectations are reflected in the amount.
Nevertheless, it is unknown whether major activities can be performed in Japan even after crossing the sea with sufficient results in Japan.
According to local reports, it seems that 30 home runs in the season are expected as the main axis, but in fact, Tsutsugo’s performance in the 2019 season was another step in terms of MLB challenge year.
Blow performance for the last 5 years
The fact that 30 home runs did not reach 30 in 2019 is inferior to the average year, but what should be noted is the number of strikeouts (141). Striking out in the scoring zone was noticeable, which was a factor in slightly lowering the base appearance rate, and the overall impression was a little unsatisfactory.
However, I think DeNA’s first captain to go to second place in the NPB Central League as a captain is to contribute to the team more than individual performance.
Main players of Tampa Bay Rays that Tsutsugo breaks into
Tampa Bay Rays is the American League East District.
This is a fierce battlefield where both the New York Yankees with pitcher Masahiro Tanaka and the Boston Red Sox are both powerful and powerful.
Meanwhile, the raise of the 2019 season is 96 wins and 66 losses (2nd in the A League East).
Coincidentally, as a fan in the same rank as the Baystars, I can’t help but feel any connection.
Shun Yamaguchi, a colleague at BayStars until 2016, decided to transfer to the Toronto Blue Jays, making the area even more attractive to Japanese.
Here’s a look back at the key players and performances of the Tampa Bay Rays 2019 season.
▶Brandon Lowe : AVG .270, HR 17
▶Austin Meadows : AVG .291, HR 33
▶Choi Ji-Man : AVG .261, HR 19
▶Kevin Kiermaier : AVG .228, HR 4, Rawlings Gold Glove Award
Both are the same left-handers as Tsutsugo.
Tsutsugo joins the raise as a helper, of course.
It is the fourth oldest stick in the raise.
Although it is the first year, expectations and achievements required of helpers are naturally high.
Here are the things that Tsutsugo thinks are necessary to achieve his grades from the first year.
First year hits base rate and wide angle
In the Baystars, he served as the 4th and main player, and in SAMURAI JAPAN, the result is 4th.
He achieved a total of 200 home runs in 2019 and 1,000 hits at the beginning of the season if he was in the Japanese baseball world in 2020.
But the appeal of Tsutsugo’s batting is that
①Bat control that can hit a wide angle hit
At first it was a pull hitter, but as a result of steady practice, I was able to hit left and right and hit a home run.
Often compared to Hideki “Godzilla” Matsui, Hideki Matsui was a pull hitter in the MLB, but a different batter’s box in Tsutsugo’s style looks different.
However, just hitting the wide angle doesn’t increase the base rate.
②In order to increase the base appearance rate, a ball selection eye that can identify the foreball is required
Tsutsugo has a good eye for selecting balls. However, as mentioned above, there were many strikeouts in 2019, many of which were “missed strikeouts”.
Probably, the reading “Here is the ball” was taken in the strike zone inside Tsutsugo. The moment I missed the strikeout, I remembered that I had a lot of facial expressions like “oh”.
I think this is the only way to stay at bat in the major, but Tsutsugo’s adaptive stress is high, so it is a matter of time to get used to it.
Both the Rays team and the local fans are expecting a home run and a long hit from Tsutsugo who served as the 4th representative of JAPAN.
First, adjust to the major ball. Then I think you can aim for a long hit next year.
One issue is the appointment method, including defense.
In the 2019 season, Toshiro Miyazaki, the Baystars third baseman, was injured by injury and quickly became the third player in five years.
Due to the influence, it is written in local media that expects utility appointment of the infield rather than the left of the main job, but I do not mind as a fan.
Even if you look at the video, it’s both instantaneous power and pitching as defense for the infielder of the major. I don’t know at this time what kind of appointment is actually up to the camp.
The American League has a DH system.
However, I think that rhythm will go wrong if a player who has been defensive in the se league without DH system only concentrates on batting only with DH until now.
I think that it is both offense and defense because it is a major challenge, so I want you to do a defensive defense by all means to be active in a major for a long time.
Only now I play baseball for myself
Maybe you shouldn’t really say this.
I want Tsutsugo to play baseball for himself at least now.
From the standpoint of the Rays, it is SAMURAI JAPAN’s 4th batter earned with an expensive year stick to win the team.
And Tsutsugo himself has been appointed as DeNA Baystars captain since 2015, and may have the spirit of “For the Team”, which puts the team’s victory first.
However, fans hope that they will be able to play baseball on a major stage at last, since they have a dream since childhood, so at the very least they should think about themselves and play baseball.
I want to see that grinning smile on the boiled ground of a major.