Can Masataka Yoshida, a Japanese outfielder who joined the Boston Red Sox, become the rookie batting champion?
Yoshida signed a five-year, $90 million contract with Boston through the posting system ahead of this season. Yoshida, who won the 2020-2021 NPB Pacific League batting champion and has never fallen below 30% batting average since 2017, the second year of his debut, is regarded as the best hitter among Japanese players. NPB career batting average is 0.327.
Maybe that’s why the major leagues also highly evaluated Yoshida’s batting ability. The statistical analysis program ‘Steamer’ projected Yoshida’s batting average to be 0.298 this season, ‘ATC’ to be 0.285, and ‘The BAT’ to be 0.283. All of them are less than 30%, but it is still a generous evaluation considering the level difference in the league.
In particular, according to Steamer, who had the highest batting average, Yoshida participated in 122 games and scored 144 hits (18 homers) in 483 at-bats, 86 points and 61 RBIs, and will become the overall batting champion in the major leagues next year. Steamer predicted that no major league hitter would hit higher than Yoshida.
Second place was Luis Araes, who was the American League batting champion last year (belonging to the Minnesota Twins) and was traded to the National League Miami Marlins on the 21st of this month (Korean time). Los Angeles Dodgers Freddy Freeman (0.293) ranked third, and Toronto Blue Jays Vladimir Guerrero Jr. (0.292) ranked fourth.
According to the ATC, Yoshida is expected to rank 5th in batting average in the American League and 10th in overall batting average in the major leagues. THE BAT predicted that Yoshida would rank 6th in the American League and 9th in the Major Leagues. He’s not quite as good as Steamer, but he still sees a soft landing for Yoshida’s first year in the majors.스포츠토토
Citing Steamer’s record on the 23rd, Natsuki Une, major league columnist for ‘Yahoo Japan’, said, “The American League batting champion is Yoshida, and the National League batting champion is Araes. The last rookie batting champion was Ichiro (0.350) in 2001. American In addition to Ichiro, the only rookie in the league to win Rookie of the Year since 1900 is Tony Oliver in 1964 (0.323).”
On the other hand, if Yoshida wins the title with a high hit, it will be a good condition for Lee Jung-hoo (Kiwoom Heroes), who is aiming for a post in the major leagues after this season. Since Ichiro, there have been few hitters from the Asian League with sophisticated batting, but if Yoshida overcomes major league pitchers, the value of Lee Jung-hoo, who won five KBO batting crowns last year, can be preserved.