Some Japanese WBC players work out in Miami after long flight

Japan's squad for the World Baseball Classic arrived in Miami, Florida for the semifinals and some players wasted no time to start working out, despite the jet lag from the 13-hour flight.

Team Japan left Tokyo on a chartered flight after defeating Italy in the quarterfinal on Thursday. After arriving at their hotel in Miami at 4:30 a.m. Friday, most players spent the day resting in their rooms.

But five players were the exception. By 11:30 a.m., they were ready to play catch and jog around the grounds of a local university.

Among them was pitcher Sasaki Roki, who is expected to start in either the semifinal or the final, if all goes well.
After an hour of training, Sasaki said he thinks Miami weather is warm and comfortable. He said the most that he can do for the team is to perform at his best, so he would try to be in top shape.

Outfielder Yoshida Masataka, who recently joined the Boston Red Sox, said he slept well on the plane, and napped for four more hours at the hotel. He said he is getting ready for two more games that Japan cannot lose.

In the semifinal on Monday, Samurai Japan will face Mexico. Japan is aiming for its third World Baseball Classic title after winning the tournament in 2006 and 2009.