WBC | Learn Real English

WBC | Learn Real English

Learn Real English | WBC Interviews

The 2023 WBC (World Baseball Classic) has been a great event for Team Japan. In this lesson, we’re going to take a look at what he said, learn some of the key phrases, and how to use them.


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English Interview Transcript: A Dream Come True

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Lars Nootbaar in the Outfield Playing for Team Japan in the 2023 WBC

They said not to say a dream come true cause we haven’t, we haven’t won anything yet, but for, you know for me and my family it really is a dream come true.

Um, I’m super proud and super thankful to Japan and team Japan, um, to allow me to play on this, for me.

Um, it’s a great opportunity and… and it’s been so… so overwhelmingly, you know, pleasing to be able to come over here.

Everybody’s been so nice and so accepting that, um, gives me even more reason to go out and play my heart out because I wanna lay everything on the line for this team and this country.

English Interview Transcript | Deadball

And in the 6th, you got hit by pitch. Is your body alright?

Yeah, you know I was rolling out that spot before the game, and you know, it got me right in the good spot. So you know, it loosened me up actually.

English Interview Transcript | Freak of Nature

You’ve seen how much attention there is in Shohei Ohtani; how exciting is it to be part of that?

Yeah, I think um, I’m just like, like you guys. I think I’m… I’m just… just like a fan. You know? Being able to watch that. Um, I just fortunately get a front row seat to it.

It’s been pretty amazing to watch him go about his business. Go about his work and then handle himself on and off the field.

Um, it’s really impressive. I was just standing outside… Something I’ve never seen before. He’s a… he’s a freak of nature and even a better guy. And I mean that wholeheartedly, so… um, been very impressed with how he goes about his business.

English Interview Transcript Freak of Nature

So, Ippei is calling us from Japan.


Ippei is Shohei Ohtani’s translator.

Ippei Mizuhara, who, uh, was raised in southern California. Born in Japan. He’s traveling with Team Japan right now, working with the team as an interpreter, among many jobs. He also throws BP (batting practice) and does just about everything else.

Does it all. So Ippei, thank you, man. Thanks for calling in.

Hey guys.

Hey Ippei, we had a photo of all you guys crushing a meal someplace and we guessed at the time; I’m like, they’re eating the good, expensive sushi. There’s no California rolls at this thing, right?


What was the bill for this event? Do you know?

Um, I’m not sure but Darvish and Shohei flipped the bill.

Darvish and Shohei flipped the bill. That’s awesome that they did that.

English Interview Transcript | Ohtani’s First Home Run

…who catches Shohei Ohtani’s first World Baseball Classic home run. You’re gonna have to talk to some folks.

But Jose*** I cannot get over the scene in the initial aftermath where the ball was just politely and calmly passed around. Everyone partaking in sharing this history.

What a precious memento. Not just for her, but as you mentioned, just to have the warmness and the heart to say;

‘I want to share this with everybody around me and you’re all a part of this. You all came to see Shohei Ohtani.’

Why not share that?

English Interview Transcript | Lars’ Pep Talk

We’ve got 3 games left, but only today takes us to Miami.

Let’s play loose, let’s play with some swag and let’s play a hard game so we can be partying on that plane tonight.

English Interview Transcript | Speaking my Heart

I found another video of you when you were in Little League that, um, I wanna show you before we talk about it. So, let’s watch this now.

Konichiwa. My name’s Lars Nootbar. Um, I’m number 21 and I’m Japanese.

Um, I hope I do good during All Stars and I’m gonna represent my country for Japan.

I mean, Lars, I’m gonna be honest, man. That’s so cool. Fast forward however many years later and you’re about to play for Team Japan in the WBC after… what is it, Little League All Stars, it looked like. You said you’re gonna represent your country someday.  I mean, how cool is that?

Yeah, it a… that moment was really cool. And, um… that was just the real, genuine ten-year-old me speaking, you know like, my heart. And um, the fact that we’re now, like, we’re here where we are and I’m able to actually do that…

Man, it’s a pretty… pretty surreal moment, really.

English Interview Transcript | Hail Mary

Did you know that playing for Team Japan would be a possibility and how… like how did it actually come to be where you ended up on the team?

Ippei, Shohei’s interpreter, reached out to me when I was in Milwaukee and, um, he was like ‘hey I just want to gauge your interest. Um, you know, not really sure exactly but are…  A) are you eligible and B) what’s your interest?’

And I was like, um, like, whatever paper work you need I’ll send it over immediately.

Very interested!

Yeah. My interest is yes! You know, there’s no question about that.

Did you, at that time, know Ippei and Shohei? Like… have you… Were you close enough? Or was it just kind of  like a random reach out? Like a random Hail Mary?

It was a total random reach out. And um…

That’s great.

Yeah. It was awesome. It was like, you know, I got, like, a follow and a DM on Instagram. And I was like, man, I couldn’t be happier this right now. You know? It was one of those things. So, it was… it was awesome.

English Interview Transcript | Talking Smack

So tomorrow you go up against the US, some of your teammates; Goldy, Arenado. A little awkward? How’s that gonna feel tomorrow?

Um, I’ll see if I get a text from them. I won’t text them first, but if they text me I’ll respond to them. But I said it earlier; we were talking a lot of smack to each other and they held up their end of the bargain. So, now it’s time for the showdown. I’m excited.

English Interview Transcript | WBC Champion

Nootbaar, congratulations. You are WBC champion with Japan. How’s that sound?

Man, that sounds great. It’s got a great ring to it. I’m… man, I’m so happy to be a part of this team. This is… this is the greatest feeling I’ve ever had, man. This is unbelievable.

What went through your mind at bat; (Mike) Trout against Ohtani?

He knew it was gonna come down to it. He was due up third. That’s just the way the script was gonna go, man. I didn’t know who was gonna come out on top. I like our guy a lot, but, man… unbelievable!

I’ve said it before, but we’ve never seen anything like Shohei before, man. He’s the greatest.

That medal that you have right now; you gonna keep it or are you gonna give it to somebody special?

You know what, I don’t really know, man. It’s not that cool, is it? I’m just playing, man. It’s gonna go off somewhere and it’s gonna be hang… hung there forever.

English Interview Transcript | Pepper Grinder

Lars, I just wanna take a step back for a second. You were on ‘Flipping Bats’ two weeks ago, right before you went to Japan and how could you best describe the transformation in your life from that moment two weeks ago to… to being here right now?

Yeah, I… I really couldn’t and, you know, I said earlier but we talked about it, and you know, you told me, you know, kind of what to expect. I don’t even know if you knew that this was gonna happen in two weeks.

You know… you know, we talked two, three years ago I was working manual labor to that point. I think from that point to this point, it’s blown up even more, man. It’s been unbelievable.

So, how did… how did the pepper grinder thing start? I know you kind of… did it really take off when Shohei did it? When he hit that homer in the exhibition? Or how did this take off the way it did?

Yeah, I mean, I asked Shohei before. I was like, ‘hey what are we gonna do for celebrations?’ He’s like, ‘what’d you guys do with the Cardinals?’ And… and I told him we did that so he was like, ‘you’re leading off. You know, if you get a hit, go do it.’ The exhibition game I did it and then from there, obviously, he had two home runs that game and he started doing it. Whatever Shohei does in Japan, that’s what goes. And so, um, he kind of led the way there.

English Interview Transcript | Hats Off

I think, as a baseball fan, I guess… you know, everyone wanted to see it. Um, you know, he… he won round one.

Um, you know, you can’t take anything away from him. Just being able to come out of the bullpen, um you know, as a starter, um, you know it show time, so…

It’s um, you know, hats off to them guys over there. It was a tough… tough night for us, but, um, we’ll be back.

English Interview Transcript | Lars Bar

Is there a better name in baseball today that Lars Nootbaar? Sounds like an expensive chocolate bar.

Well, we might have to work on that; start selling something in the stands or something.

Lars Nootbaar has so many snack opportunities in his name.

Like I said before, we were working on something.

Lars Nootbaar is the name of a Norwegian protein bar that girls named Jessica take pictures with on hikes in Glacier National Park… Not a baseball player.

Clint, that’s oddly specific and I don’t know if it’s true.

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