15 minutes before the start of the professional baseball draft meeting. Osaka Toin catcher Shion Matsuo appeared at the venue where the press was waiting. The expression on his face makes him feel a little stiff. He has participated in Koshien for four consecutive seasons, and although he has a wealth of experience, having reached the top in the spring of his third year, he is still only 18 years old. Only a draft prospect knows how he feels as he waits for his childhood dream to come true.
Director Koichi Nishitani, who sat down to the left of Matsuo, often called out to his students to ease their tension. A smile appeared on Matsuo’s face. 5pm. After confirming the start of the draft meeting on the TV monitor, Matsuo straightened his necktie and straightened his back.
The real intention that Matsuo used only once “Homma ni” leaked
The name of the player who was nominated for 1st place is called one after another. 3 teams left. The 11th Orix and the 12th Yakult have professed the players to be nominated in the first place. Matsuo’s 1st place nomination is effectively the last chance. The name echoed in the silent venue.
Matsuo was DeNA’s top-rated player in this fall’s draft. A round of applause erupts from his friends sitting at the back of the hall. Matsuo’s expression didn’t change. About 30 seconds passed, and when he was approached by Director Nishitani, his expression collapsed. And as soon as all 12 teams finished the first pick, he let out a big sigh.
He must have been nervous. At the press conference, I was overwhelmed with relief. Second question. He was asked about the change in his state of mind when he was waiting for the nomination and when he received the nomination.
“I waited without knowing if I would really be selected, but I was really relieved to be selected.”
On this day, Matsuo repeated “really”, looking for words to accurately convey his joy at being nominated and his enthusiasm for the future. However, at the beginning of the interview, he leaked his “real intentions” only once, saying, “For real.”
Matsuo has set a “new catcher” as a professional goal. He said “triple three” for specific numbers. He envisions a “catcher who can hit and run”, evolving from the “catcher who can hit”, which has come in handy in baseball in recent years.
“My strengths are my speedy play and strong shoulders.
Manager Nishitani “The speed that ordinary catchers don’t have”
Matsuo was originally a shortstop. He switched to catcher in the fall of his first year. He’s inexperienced, but he’s grown to become a first-round pick in the draft. Manager Nishitani commented, “He has speed that ordinary catchers don’t have.”
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