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WATCH: Dodgers starter Yoshinobu Yamamoto strikes out three in spring training debut after signing $325M deal

After Shohei Ohtani homered in his Dodgers spring training debut on Tuesday, the Dodgers unveiled another new toy to their fan base on Wednesday. It was the spring training debut for starting pitcher Yoshinobu Yamamoto

Yamamoto wasted no time getting ahead in the count, coaxing a foul ball off the bat of Rangers leadoff man Marcus Semien to start the game. He would strike Semien out on a 96-mph heater. 

Evan Carter followed with a single, but then Wyatt Langford grounded into a double play to end the frame. Yamamoto needed only 11 pitches, nine of them strikes, in the first. 

He came back out for the second inning. It went strikeout, flyout and strikeout. 

The line: 2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 3 K. He threw 19 pitches and a whopping 16 of them were for strikes. 

His actual debut is still to come, as this was just a two-inning exhibition outing, but from what we saw, Yamamoto certainly looks the part of ace. 

The Dodgers signed Yamamoto from out of Japan’s NPB this past offseason to a 12-year, $325 million deal. The 5-foot-10 right-hander is 25 years old this season, which is younger than most players when making the transition from NPB to MLB

Yamamoto’s stuff is expected to play remarkably in the majors and here’s a quick rundown, via R.J. Anderson of CBS Sports: 

Talent evaluators have raved to CBS Sports about Yamamoto for years, citing his high-grade command over a good arsenal as the most impressive part of his game. He throws a mid-90s fastball about half the time, complementing it with a swing-and-miss splitter and a high-spin curveball. Each of those pitches went for a strike at least 65% of the time this season, reinforcing the notion that he paints with a fine-tip brush.

In NPB last season, Yamamoto was 17-6 with a 1.16 ERA, 0.86 WHIP and 176 strikeouts against 28 walks in 171 innings. He won three straight MVPs in the Pacific Coast League before departing Japan. He also left with three straight Eiji Sawamura Awards (the NPB equivalent to the Cy Young). 

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