Oakland Athletics Shintaro Fujinami (29) expressed his feelings about leaving his former team, the Hanshin Tigers.
On the 22nd, Japanese media Sponichi Annex said, “An unusual Koshien ‘farewell party’ was held. Fujinami, who transferred to Auckland through a post from Hanshin, held a farewell press conference at Koshien Stadium.”
Fujinami is a fireballer who recorded 57 wins, 54 losses, 11 holds, and an average ERA of 3.41 in 189 games (994⅓ innings) in Nippon Professional Baseball. His strengths are his fastball with a speed of at least 160 km per hour and a sharp forkball. Since his high school days, he has attracted great interest by throwing fastballs that exceed 150 km, and as an amateur, his evaluation as a pitcher was higher than his draft motive, Shohei Ohtani (Angels).
However, Nami Huja did not show up to his expectations as his control was not well established after he joined the pro team. While Ohtani dominated Nippon Professional Baseball and won MVP awards in the major leagues, Fujinami continued to decline. In the past few years, he has been criticized for sabotage during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Fujinami, who had a difficult time, managed to rebound to some extent last year with an average ERA of 3.38 with 3 wins and 5 losses in 16 games (66⅔ innings). Especially in the second half, his control was caught and he was evaluated as overcoming his weakness to some extent. And he declared his advance to the major leagues through posting after the season, and realized his dream of reaching the major league mound by signing a one-year, $3.75 million contract with Oakland. 토토사이트
At a press conference, Fujinami said, “I am both excited and anxious. Still, she is more excited. She doesn’t know when it will be, but if she gets a chance to throw again at Koshien, she wants to throw it. I was touched that her colleagues sent me a surprise message,” she said of her feelings about leaving Hanshin.
It was also pointed out that Fujinami, who has not made any outstanding achievements in Japanese professional baseball, may not be able to get his major league contract easily. He had difficulty finding a team for his contract, especially as he insisted on a starting pitcher spot. However, Fujinami overcame the negative prospects and achieved his dream of entering the major leagues.
He joked, “It’s like going into retirement,” Fujinami said, “I don’t think it was strange to hear more. He felt he had to work harder,” he said, reaffirming his determination to do his best to overcome the negative gaze. He continued, “If I can come back to Japan after being active, that is the best. I hope I can come back to Hanshin with what I learned in the U.S. in some way.”
Regarding what he learned from being a professional player for 10 years, Fujinami said, “I don’t think I’m a player who can hold interviews like this. I am grateful for this position itself, and I am more than happy to hold a press conference at Koshien, which raised me. I came to think that the good things were good, and the bad things were included as ‘good’. He was able to grow as a human being,” he said.