Chunichi foreign pitcher, who disappeared after the WBC, first announced his position “challenging the dream”
Cuban pitcher Yariel Rodriguez, who lost contact after participating in the WBC, announced his official position for the first time through social media.
Rodriguez is a foreign 안전놀이터pitcher who has played for the Nippon Professional Baseball (NPB) Chunichi Dragons since the 2020 season. He served as a starting pitcher in the 2020 and 2021 seasons, and last year he pitched as a bullpen agent Pilseung Joe. While playing for Zunić, Rodriguez signed a contract with the Cuban government on the condition that he pay a portion of his salary. Cuba, which is closed, approves overseas expansion only under these conditions.
Rodriguez represented Cuba at the WBC in March. It was a decision made with the approval of his team, Chunichi. However, a division broke out as Cuba defeated Australia in the quarterfinals and advanced to the semifinals in Miami, USA.
Cuba faced the United States in the semifinals and lost, but two players did not return to their teams. First, bullpen catcher Ivan Prieto did not board a plane to Cuba, but remained in Miami and attempted asylum in the United States, and Rodriguez also lost contact without returning to his Japanese team Chunichi. Rodriguez was originally scheduled to return to Japan on March 29 after the WBC schedule was over, but he did not board the scheduled flight and went on a dive.
Embarrassed, Junichi contacted the Cuban authorities and the player’s side, but local media reported that he had chosen asylum in the United States.
And on the 27th, about a month later, Rodriguez left a greeting for Chunichi fans through his SNS. Rodriguez said: “Thank you to all the Dragons fans for giving me a wonderful three years as a Chunichi player. I want to apologize for quitting my contract so abruptly, but I decided to follow my dream. It is an impossible major league dream. I want to achieve that dream by training hard in the future.”
Rodriguez made sure of his showcase with a fastball that reached over 160 km at the WBC. Since he is a fastball pitcher capable of both starting and bullpen positions,