Samurai Japan updates from March 3.
- Takahiro Norimoto was considered the top candidate to start the first game of the World Baseball Classic, but may have lost the opportunity after he gave up three runs during a three-inning stint against the CPBL on February 28. Samurai Japan might instead turn to Ayumu Ishikawa, who turned in a solid performance against the CPBL on March 1. If Ishikawa does get the start, Norimoto could be pushed back to the first game of the second round. Source: ZakZak 3/3/2017
- Hiroki Kokubo was open to the idea of giving Norimoto a chance to pitch in another game before the start of the WBC, but the right-hander told him it was unnecessary. Source: Sponichi 3/3/2017 … According to a Sanspo from March 4, Norimoto is scheduled to make an appearance against Orix on March 5. Source: Sanspo 3/4/2017 … Norimoto will pitch two innings out of the bullpen during a tune-up appearance on March 5. Source: Nikkan Sports 3/4/2017
- Shintaro Fujinami might see some action during the first game of the WBC. Source: Sponichi 3/3/2017
- Motohiro Shima (right calf) will most likely be replaced by Ginjiro Sumitani. Source: Sponichi 3/3/2017, Daily Sports 3/3/2017, Nikkan Sports 3/3/2017, Nikkan Sports 3/3/2017
- Katsuhiro Miyamoto, Kansai University emeritus professor, believes the economic impact of Japan winning the WBC will be about 34.3 billion yen. The estimate would have been 39.2 billion yen if Shohei Otani was on the roster. Source: Daily Sports 3/3/2017
- According to a report by Tokyo Sports, Ichiro turned down an offer to play for Samurai Japan because he was not confident about his ability to take on the responsibilities of representing Japan. Source: Tokyo Sports 3/3/2017