Yoshinobu Yamamoto Joined Rare Group Of Dodgers Pitchers With MLB Debut In Seoul Series

Originally published by DodgerBlue.com

The Los Angeles Dodgers are one of MLB’s longest and most storied franchises and they can trace their history all the way back to the 1884 season back when the team played in Brooklyn, New York.

That makes it all the more impressive when a modern player, such as Yoshinobu Yamamoto, breaks a record or joins an exclusive group of players. Yamamoto already achieved that in one regard by signing the richest contract for a pitcher in MLB history.

His contract with the Dodgers is for 12 years and $325 million, edging the nine-year, $324 million deal Gerrit Cole signed with the New York Yankees in December 2019.

Now Yamamoto has put himself in the record books by making his MLB debut in the finale of the Seoul Series at Gocheok Sky Dome.

According to Sarah Lang of MLB Network, Yamamoto is the sixth Dodgers pitcher to make his MLB debut within the team’s first two games of a season. The group also includes Gene McCann, Henry Schmidt, Nap Rucker, Hank Behrman and Hyun-Jin Ryu:

Yoshinobu Yamamoto is the 6th Dodgers pitcher since at least 1901 to make his MLB debut by starting 1 of his team’s 1st 2 games of a season, joining:

2013 Hyun Jin Ryu
1946 Hank Behrman
1907 Nap Rucker
1903 Henry Schmidt
1901 Gene McCann

all G2 except Schmidt, who started OD

— Sarah Langs (@SlangsOnSports) March 21, 2024

McCan was a member of the Brooklyn Superbas from 1901-1902. McCan made his debut for the Superbas on April 19, 1901, against the Philadelphia Phillies in a 10-2 win.

Schmidt was the only pitcher on the aforementioned list who was a Dodgers Opening Day starter. In his lone season for the Superbas in 1903, Schmidt debuted April 17, 1903, against the New York Giants at the Polo Grounds and pitched a complete game in the 9-7 win.

Rucker pitched for Brooklyn from 1907-1916, while Behrman spent time with the Dodgers, Pittsburgh Pirates and New York Giants.

Ryu was a member of the Dodgers from 2013-2019 and made his MLB debut on April 2, 2013, against the San Francisco Giants in a 3-0 loss. Ryu was the losing pitcher of record despite his one earned run in 6.1 innings of work.

Unfortunately for Yamamoto, his MLB debut lasted just one inning as he threw 43 pitches and allowed five runs.

Yoshinobu Yamamoto adjusting with Dodgers coaches

After an impressive Spring Training debut, Yamamoto had stretches where he struggled in two ensuing Cactus League starts. The Dodgers have downplayed concern and prioritized patience with the 25-year-old adjusting to life as an MLB pitcher.

With that, Dodgers pitching coaches took a more hands-on approach with game planning while taking into account Yamamoto’s strengths and preferences rather than primarily allowing him to scout and prepare.

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