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Hisashi Iwakuma won’t participate in World Baseball Classic

Nov 11, 2012, 5:14 PM EDT

iwakuma getty Getty Images

Yu Darvish isn’t the only Japanese starting pitcher planning to skip the 2013 World Baseball Classic.

From the Associated Press, via NBCSports.com, comes word that Hisashi Iwakuma has decided not to pitch for Japan and “will instead focus on preparing for his second season with the Seattle Mariners.”

Iwakuma inked a two-year, $14 million contract extension with the M’s earlier this month after registering a fantastic 3.16 ERA, 1.28 WHIP and 101/43 K/BB ratio across 125 1/3 innings in 2012. The deal also includes a $7 million option for 2015.

Darvish and Iwakuma both pitched for Team Japan in the 2009 World Baseball Classic. That group won the country’s second straight title, with Daisuke Matsuzaka earning his second straight tournament MVP.

  1. shawnuel - Nov 11, 2012 at 5:20 PM

    This could just be my Mariner fandom getting the best of me, but I could see Iwakuma putting up Kuroda type production for the rest of his career in MLB, providing his shoulder holds up.

  2. jayquintana - Nov 11, 2012 at 7:01 PM

    Well, at least Japan still has Dice-K pitching for them! LOL.

  3. vincecully - Nov 12, 2012 at 9:16 AM

    Is his nickname Ewok yet?

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