By Ryu Ishibashi
Tokyo.- In March, team Mexico will come to Japan. Japanese fans are familiar to Cochito Cruz, Ramiro Pena, Luis Alonso Mendoza and Agustin Murillo, because they used to play in Japan. However, others, even MLB players such as Sergio Romo and Danny Espinosa those who play in MLB are not familiar to most of Japanese baseball fans. Therefore, here I will introduce Mexican baseball players mainly for Japanese people.
The most exciting player of the team Mexico I think is Luis Juarez. He is just like Seiya Inoue of Chiba Lotte Marines.
Luis Felipe Juarez Diaz (in Spanish they usually write their mother’s last name after their father’s, for example Tomoyuki Sugano will be Tomoyuki Sugano Hara) was born in Culiacan, Sinaloa. Generally in Mexico, soccer and boxing are more popular than baseball, but in Culiacan, baseball has been the most popular sport. He started his professional career in 2009 with Sultanes de Monterey. He was originally a catcher, but he have played in several positions. He finally became the batting leader in La Liga Mexicana del Pacifico with Aguilas de Mexicali and chosen as a member of team Mexico for WBC.
However, his only problem was injury. He had a back problem. He was absent for the winter league due to surgery he had at Guadalajara. He spent the whole winter season to cure his back, and came back to team Mexico for pre-Panamerican games.
Now Pepon (The nickname of Luis) is said to be one of the best right-handed batters in Mexico.
The exhibition game in Japan will be a big chance for him to be known in Japan. His former teammate in Sultanes Zoilo Almonte is now playing in Chunichi Dragons. The stats he marked this year is better than that of Zoilo in 2017. It’s only a few weeks until he comes.
Let’s check up Luis Juarez.