US baseball team catcher JT Realmuto (Philadelphia Phillies) participating in the 2023 World Baseball Classic (WBC) showed pride as a national representative.안전놀이터
MLB.com, the official website of the Major League Baseball (MLB), reported an interview conducted with Realmuto on the 22nd (Korean time).
Currently training at Philadelphia Spring Camp in Clearwater, Florida, Realmuto is sweating hard ahead of joining the WBC team. The U.S. selected three catchers for this national team: Real Muto, Will Smith (LA Dodgers), and Kyle Higashioka (New York Yankees).
The meaning of being a national representative to Real Muto is unique. It is because of his uncle’s influence.
Realmuto’s uncle, John Smith, was a former wrestler and took the lead in enhancing national prestige by playing as a national representative in the past.
Smith won gold medals in both the men’s freestyle 62kg class at the 1988 Seoul Olympics and the 1992 Barcelona Olympics, and from 1987 to 1991, he won four consecutive gold medals in the men’s freestyle 62kg class at the World Wrestling Championships. MLB.com described Smith as “one of the greatest wrestlers in American history.”
Real Muto, who has watched his uncle since childhood, has also dreamed of playing in international competitions as a member of the US National Team.
He said, “In my family, we always watched videos of my uncle’s past performances. I thought (my uncle winning a medal) was the coolest thing in the world, and I also really wanted to play for the U.S. national team.”
Realmuto, who debuted in the big leagues in 2014, failed to make the US WBC team in 2017. At the time, the U.S. selected Buster Posey, Jonathan Lucroy, and AJ Ellis (retired) as catchers. Realmuto, who dreamed of joining the national team as the third catcher, was also frustrated.
Realmuto looked back at the time, saying, “I wanted to play for the WBC in 2017, but I was sad because I couldn’t get in touch.”
Six years later, Realmuto grew up to be a catcher representing MLB and was proudly called up to the U.S. national team. He is also expected to play an active part as the main catcher in the national team.
“He’s proud to wear the Team USA jersey,” said Real Muto.
His uncle Smith was delighted, saying “I’m 57 now, and I won my first Olympic gold medal at 21. I still talk about that time. But (my nephew) got a chance to relive the amazing things I experienced.”
Meanwhile, Real Muto will join Team USA alongside his teammates Trey Turner and Kyle Schwaber.