2/26 Cubs Inbox

Q: With Kyuji Fujikawa only able to speak Japanese, how will pitching coach Chris Bosio talk to him when he’s in the game? Will the translator go out with Bosio to the mound or will Bosio just tell the translator what he wants Fujikawa to do and the translator just runs out and do it alone? — Erik S., Rockford, IL

A: Major League Baseball has adjusted its rules so the interpreter — in this case, Ryo Shinkawa — can go to the mound with Bosio if needed. Fujikawa does speak some English — and some of the terminology is the same. For example, a fastball is “fastball” in Japanese. Bosio also is trying to learn enough Japanese necessary to communicate, so if there is a key word needed, he can use that. In Fujikawa’s first appearance in an intrasquad game, Shinkawa went to the mound with catcher Rafael Lopez to make sure the pitcher and catcher could communicate.


I have always been amazed that the players coming from other countries have been able to not only absorb a new culture but also communicate in a new language. They have to take coaching instructions, etc.in English and I am glad they are able to have interpreters help them out. If I had to go to Japan or the Dominican or wherever and play a complicated game such as BB I would be pretty confused. Good for these guys!

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