By Matthew Tallarini
World Baseball Network
Japan announced their roster for the 19th Asian Games, which will happen in Hangzhou, China, at the Shaoxing Baseball Softball Sports Culture Center from September 25 to October 7.
The Shaoxing Baseball Softball Sports Culture Center complex is located in the north of Shaoxing City. There are two baseball fields that are on the complex grounds. The main stadium on the complex grounds can seat 5,000 people and add 5,000 temporary seats, and the second stadium has 1,500 seats and can add 1,000 temporary seats.
Shaoxing Baseball Softball Sports Culture Center was supposed to be the site of the baseball and softball events at the Asian Games for 2022, but the games were canceled due to the COVID-19 Pandemic.
The baseball event will be from October 1-7 for the Asian Games.
The roster for Japan will have players from the industrial leagues, since Nippon Professional Baseball will still be in season. Players playing in the industrial leagues in Japan often have played in Nippon Professional Baseball and the independent leagues that are governed by the Japan Baseball Federation.
The coaching staff for Japan will be the same group from the U-23 World Cup held in October 2022 in Taiwan, where Japan beat Korea in the final game. Akio Ishii will return as the manager for Japan during the Asian Games.
The last time Japan won gold at the Asian games was 1994, which was the first year that baseball became a medal sport at the event.
South Korea has won the gold five times at the Asian Games, winning in 1998, 2002, 2010, 2014, and 2018.
Chinese Taipei has only won one gold medal at the Asian Games, in 2006.
The Japan national team will hold their training camp from August 15-18 in Heiwa Lease Stadium in Kagoshima. They will play two exhibition games against industrial league teams, on August 16 against Honda Kumamoto and on August 17 against Seibu Gas.
There will be 10 countries from the World Baseball Softball Confederation Asia sector participating in the baseball event for the 19th Asian Games: Japan, ranked No. 1, No. 5 Korea, No. 4 Chinese Taipei, No. 23 China, No. 38 Pakistan, No. 41 Sri Lanka, No. 42 The Philippines, No. 54 Hong Kong, No. 55 India, and No. 61 Bangladesh.
19th Asian Games Roster for Japan National Team
Mitsunori Kato (ENEOS)
Yoshiteru Fuchigami (Toyota Motor)
Yoshiteru Iwamoto (Nippon Shinyaku )
Makoto Hori (NTT East Japan)
Yuki Katayama (Honda Kumamoto)
Katsutoshi Satake (Toyota Motor)
Soichiro Kayo (Toyota Motor)
Shunya Morita (Honda Suzuka)
Junichi Tazawa (ENEOS)
Toshiya Nanki (JR Hokkaido Baseball Club)
Yudai Tsujino (Honda)
Ryo Kiminami (Nippon Express)
Tomoya Shimokawa (NTT East Japan)
Satoshi Kaneko (Toshiba)
Shoji Kitamura (Toyota Motor)
Takunori Nakagawa (Honda Suzuka)
Shun Nakamura (NTT East Japan)
Takeshi Maruyama (ENEOS)
Naoya Mochizuki (Toyota Motor East Japan)
Motoo Mukaiyama (NTT East Japan)
Kohei Sasakawa (Tokyo Gas)
Tatsuhiko Sato (Honda)
Seiho Suzuki (JR East Tohoku)
Takamasa Inohara (Miki House)
Japan Asian Games Coaching Staff
Akio Ishii – Manager
Yoshihisa Uchikawa – Bench Coach
Toru Kato – Hitting Coach
Satoru Komoto – Pitching Coach
Shinto Gishiki – First Base Coach
Takaaki Shima – Third Base Coach