“When the Korean War starts, I will try to bring everything, and I will play hard again.”
Australian national team outfielder Aaron Whitefield attended the World Baseball Classic (WBC) Group B press conference at the Tokyo Dome in Tokyo, Japan on the 8th and expressed his thoughts that he would do his best in the match against Korea.
Whitefield, an outfielder for the Australian national team, has been playing in the United States since 2015, passing through the minor league level and debuting in the major leagues with the Minnesota Twins in 2020. Last year, he played as a pinch hitter in five games for the Los Angeles Angels.
He hasn’t recorded his first hit in the major leagues yet, and his minor league career isn’t particularly outstanding, up to double-A. He played for the ABL Melbourne Aces last year, but he didn’t have a particularly impressive record. However, his career, which he has consistently experienced in American baseball, is a valuable career for the Australian national team.
The following is a Q&A containing Whitefield’s resolution for the WBC and his impressions of participating in the Korean War.
Q. Tomorrow we will have our first match in the WBC, and
the first match in the WBC will be exciting for us. We had just finished the season and were eager to go to the national team. As you know, playing the first game against Korea is a very big match for us. I think it will be exciting to appear in front of the fans.
Q. Two weeks have passed since you arrived in Japan. How did you spend it?
I came here from a camp in the US about a week ago. However, I enjoyed the process of meeting and training with players who were working hard after coming to Japan. I like to come to Japan. (Playing in front of a crowd) was very fun and exciting. Fans were always excited, so their morale went up. Especially this year, the energy seems to be skyrocketing for a comeback on the show (WBC). So I think it’s time for us to play.
Q. Is there a specific strategy for the game against Korea?
I think our game strategy is to control all the little things of the game with our game. Like many matches, such as the Premier12, international competitions are fast-paced. You can come to rely on one misstep or one big extra hit.
So for us, that means we have to play great defense, pitch and score, whether our opponent is Korea, China, Japan or the Czech Republic. We only have to worry about ourselves because we play one game at a time. If hitters can do their part with clean play on the field and good pitches, I think we’ll be on top.
Q. If there is a personal goal for this tournament,
it is to show the world what baseball is in Australia and how we play. As you know, going to the WBC and wearing the national jersey means a lot to us. For many people back home in Australia, that’s a huge deal and it will show that we can continue to move forward먹튀검증.
When we were called up for the last Premier 12, I think Australia pissed off teams we didn’t think we could beat at the time. We grew up through it. This tournament, too, I want to continue to show the world that Australia has great baseball players and that we deserve to play in this tournament. I’ll make it very interesting.
Q. How popular is baseball in Australia? When most people think of Australian sports, they think of cricket rather than baseball.
Cricket, rugby, etc. are the biggest sports, so everyone has a different story for those reasons. In particular, where I was born and at school, baseball was not played and there was no baseball team. I had to work hard to play baseball. I was really a latecomer, not learning baseball until I was 17 or 18 years old.
I had a few friends and I caught them. I want to show Australian kids that baseball has a great future. Just because the baseball market in Australia isn’t big doesn’t mean they don’t have a future. Especially for those between the ages of 17 and 18.
I have experienced many sports before that. It doesn’t matter that kids who didn’t even know baseball existed, especially in Australia, start playing baseball at the age of 10, 15, 16, 17, etc. Team Australia is preparing a great program and will try to make a name for itself through these world events so that Australian baseball can continue to grow and move in the right direction.
Q. How is the atmosphere of the Australian team ahead of the match against Korea?
The boys are ready to go out. For example, what if you say ‘go to war’? Does not matter. I’m ready. The Korea match is our first match. We’ll play one game at a time but tomorrow when the game starts we’ll try to take everything. We are trying to score a lot of goals. In the match against Korea tomorrow, we will move forward and play hard. Then you will be excited again and longing to go on and on and on. It will run hot out the door and hopefully push its way to the end.