By Matthew Tallarini
World Baseball Network
Seiya Suzuki landed on the injured list with the Chicago Cubs Monday after being scratched from Saturday’s lineup.
The Cubs announced on Monday that Suzuki had left oblique tightness, and he will not be suiting up for Japan in the World Baseball Classic. Last year, Suzuki hit .262 with 14 home runs and 46 RBI in 111 games in his first season since coming over from Japan.
Cubs manager David Ross could have Trey Mancini be starting in right field come Opening Day if Suzuki is not healthy.
Suzuki played on the 2017 World Baseball Classic roster for Japan and also won the gold medal during the 2020 Tokyo Olympics at Yokohama Stadium. Japanese news agency Kyodo reported that Hanshin Tigers outfielder Koji Chikamoto is a possible replacement to fill in for Suzuki. Prior to the 2022 season, Suzuki signed a five-year deal worth $85 million with the Cubs, including a $5 million signing bonus.
The Cubs expect to get test results Tuesday regarding Suzuki’s injury, and the possibility that he will miss time after opening day.
Japan’s first game of the World Baseball Classic in Pool A is against China in the Tokyo Dome on March 9 at 5 a.m. EST on Fox Sports 1.