Shohei Ohtani considering closing in World Baseball Classic

Shohei Ohtani does it all — and he may be taking on a whole new role come springtime. 

Ohtani is still undecided as to whether he’ll play in next year’s competition. But if he does, Ohtani told reporters in Japanese on Tuesday (per the L.A. Times story), “it could depend in part on whether I start or pitch as a middle reliever or closer,” a report from the LA Times states. “I don’t know if they’ll say I could just hit in the first stage.”

Might his participation in the World Baseball Classic affect Ohtani’s offseason workout plan? 

“If I’m a middle reliever or closer, there’s no need to speed up anything,” Ohtani said. “That being said, if I’m going to be a starter … I’ll have to start up early.”

The tournament will begin in Taichung on March 8, with the championship taking place on March 21 in Miami, Fla.

Japan will face the Czech Republic, South Korea, Australia and China in Tokyo in Pool B.

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