Yudai Ono

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Yudai Ono
20130629 Yudai Ohno, pitcher of the Chunichi Dragons, at Yokohama Stadium.JPG
Ono with the Chunichi Dragons
Chunichi Dragons – No. 22
Born: (1988-09-26) September 26, 1988 (age 28)
Bats: Left Throws: Left
NPB debut
October 14, 2011, for the Chunichi Dragons
NPB statistics
(through 2016)
Win-Loss record 42-42
ERA 3.14
Strikeouts 518
Career highlights and awards
Medal record
Men's baseball
Representing  Japan
2015 WBSC Premier12
Bronze medal – third place 2015 Tokyo Team

Yudai Ono (大野 雄大, born September 26, 1988 in Kyoto, Japan) is a Japanese professional baseball pitcher for the Chunichi Dragons in Japan's Nippon Professional Baseball.

Early career[edit]

As a junior, Ono played for Kyoto Gaidai Nishi High School where he was part of the school team that faced a young Masahiro Tanaka in the 2005 Summer Koshien. Upon watching the current New York Yankees pitcher play, Ono was inspired and remarked "so this is the kind of guy that goes pro."[1]

He made his Koshien debut in the Spring Senbatsu tournament where his team lost 4-1 against Tokai University Sagami Senior High in the first round where Ono took 3 strikeouts for one earned run in 3 2/3 innings.[2]

Ono played for the Bukkyo University team where in his 3rd year he was touted along with Yuki Saito, Tatsuya Oishi and Hirokazu Sawamura as the "University Big 4."[1]

In the 2010 NPB draft, he was the first round pick for the Chunichi Dragons despite being injured in the lead-up.[1]

Professional career[edit]

Chunichi Dragons[edit]


Ono spent the beginning of his Chunichi career rehabbing his left arm during Spring training. From March 2011, he began proper training and made his playing debut in a pro-am match where he conceded a grand-slam homerun. Despite the set-back, he was put to work on the farm to be trained as a starting pitcher.

On October 14, he would make his first team debut against the Yomiuri Giants as a starter. It would however be an innocuous debut as Ono gave up 6 earned runs in 4 innings against 22 batters.[3][4]


On July 11, Ono made his second start, this time against the Hanshin Tigers at Koshien Stadium where he would get his first victory after pitching 5 1/3 innings, conceding one earned run and 7 hits.[5][6] He would break into the starting rotation and finish his first real season as a pro with 4 wins and 3 losses in 8 games started with an ERA of 2.62. In the off-season Ono was named for the Samurai Japan team to face Cuba.[7]


He solidified himself as a starter with the Dragons in 2013 and would post enough innings to be considered for ERA champion honors. Ono would end the season with a 10-10 record having thrown 146 innings in 25 starts with an ERA of 3.81. In November, Ono would once again be selected for the Samurai Japan team this time to face Taiwan.[8]


He would pitch well in the pre-season games but would ultimately lose out on opening day honors to veteran Kenshin Kawakami. On 26 April after conceding 5 runs in his first inning against the Yakult Swallows he was yanked from the mound, earning the ire of the senior management team and was promptly dropped to the second team.[9] On 5 June, he would unfortunately, once again experience the same fate after giving up 5 runs in 5 innings against the Chiba Lotte Marines.[10]

On 25 July, Ono would mark a comeback to form against the Giants as he recorded his first full game without a walk.[11] He would end the year with a consecutive 10 win season losing only 8 with an ERA of 2.89.


In 2015, he led both leagues in innings pitched with 207.1. His career-best 2.52 ERA ranked sixth in the Central League[12] and his six complete games were second only to the seven recorded by the Hanshin Tigers' Shintaro Fujinami.

Ono posted his highest career wins to date with an 11-10 record in 27 starts.

He would also earn a call up to the preliminary Japanese national squad for the first edition of the Premier 12 tournament.[13] On 9 October, he was selected in the final squad [14]


On March 25, Ono was selected as the starting day pitcher against the Hanshin Tigers at Kyocera Dome where he pitched a winning 5-2 game, striking out 3 and walking 2 for 2 earned runs in 7 2/3 innings.[15] Ono went on to win one more game and lose one for an ERA of 2.66 before April 15 where he was deactivated from the first team roster due to concerns regarding elbow discomfort.[16]

On June 4, he would however make his return in a 0-3 loss against the Rakuten Eagles where he pitched a 7 innings striking out 3 batters and walking 3 after giving up 3 runs in the first inning.[17]

On 28 June, Ono pitched a 3-hit shutout against the Yomiuri Giants, striking out 7 in a 5-0 win at the Tokyo Dome claiming his 5th win of the season.[18][19]

Pitching Style[edit]

Ono pitches with an over-arm action[20][21] and throws a four-seam fastball that reaches speeds of around 88 mp/h on average and tops out at 95mp/h.[22] In addition, he throws a fork, a 62 mp/h curveball,[23] two types of sliders and a dipping two-seam fastball.[20]

Personal life[edit]

Due to the influence of his grandfather, Ono grew up as a Hanshin Tigers fan. During his university playing days, Ono had attached a Torakki strap to his mobile phone,[24] however, once he was selected by the Dragons, he promptly removed it.[25]

The players that Ono looks up to the most for inspiration are current Tigers pitcher, Kyuji Fujikawa and former Dragon and current Miami Marlins starter, Wei-Yin Chen.[20][25]


  1. ^ a b c Yuichi Setsumaru (2011). 最強世代1988 田中将大、斎藤佑樹、坂本勇人、前田健太・・・・・・11人の告白(The strongest generation: 1988 Masahiro Tanaka,Yuki Saito, Hayato Sakamoto, Kenta Maeda...11 player confessions) (in Japanese). Kodansha. ISBN 978-4-0629-5066-4. 
  2. ^ "2006センバツ スコア速報 東海大相模(神奈川) 対 京都外大西(京都) (2006 Spring Koshien Score Update: Tokai University Sagami (Kanagawa) vs Kyoto Gaidai Nishi (Kyoto))". Nikkan Sports (in Japanese). 26 March 2006. Retrieved 15 June 2016. 
  3. ^ "Friday, October 14, 2011". Nippon Professional Baseball. Retrieved 13 June 2016. 
  4. ^ "ニュー速!大野プロ初登板初先発、澤村とドラ1決戦へ! (Breaking News! Ono in first pro start, a draft #1 battle with Sawamura!)". Sports Navi Plus (in Japanese). 14 October 2011. Retrieved 13 June 2013. 
  5. ^ "中日大野、沢村に投げ勝った (Chunichi's Ohno out-pitches Sawamura)". Nikkan Sports (in Japanese). 1 August 2012. Retrieved 13 June 2016. 
  6. ^ "Wednesday, July 11, 2012". Nippon Professional Baseball. Retrieved 14 June 2016. 
  7. ^ "侍ジャパンマッチ2012「日本代表対キューバ代表」 (2012 Samurai Japan Match: Japan vs Cuba)" (in Japanese). Retrieved 13 June 2016. 
  8. ^ "トップチーム 選手一覧(Overview of Top Team Players)". Official Website of Samurai Japan (in Japanese). Retrieved 13 June 2016. 
  9. ^ "中日大野1回KO試合中名古屋に強制送還 (Chunichi's Ono in one inning knockout; forcibly sent home to Nagoya)". Nikkan Sports (in Japanese). 27 April 2014. Retrieved 13 June 2016. 
  10. ^ "中日大野5回5失点KO 今季2度目降格 (Chunichi's Ono 5 inning 5 run knockout; dropped for the second time this season)". Nikkan Sports (in Japanese). 5 June 2014. Retrieved 13 June 2016. 
  11. ^ "Friday, July 25, 2014". Nippon Professional Baseball. Retrieved 13 June 2016. 
  12. ^ "2015 Central League Qualifiers for Earned-Run Average". Nippon Professional Baseball. Retrieved 14 February 2016. 
  13. ^ "トップチーム第一次候補選手発表!11月に行われる「WBSC世界野球プレミア12」へ向けて65名が名を連ねる (First announcement for the top team for the "WBSC World Baseball Premier 12; 65 players named)". Official Website of Samurai Japan (in Japanese). Retrieved 13 June 2016. 
  14. ^ "「WBSC プレミア12」侍ジャパントップチーム最終ロースター28名発表!!". Official Website of Samurai Japan (in Japanese). Retrieved 13 June 2016. 
  15. ^ "Friday, March 25, 2016". Nippon Professional Baseball. Retrieved 13 June 2016. 
  16. ^ "中日エース大野が左肘痛で抹消 医者は軽症診断も (Chunichi ace Ono deactivated with left elbow pain; Doctor judges to be minor injury)". Nikkan Sports (in Japanese). 15 April 2016. Retrieved 13 June 2016. 
  17. ^ "Saturday, June 4, 2016". Nippon Professional Baseball. Retrieved 13 June 2016. 
  18. ^ Michael Coskrey (28 June 2016). "Dragons' Ono fires three-hit shutout". Japan Times. Retrieved 8 July 2016. 
  19. ^ "Tuesday, June 28, 2016". Nippon Professional Baseball. Retrieved 8 July 2016. 
  20. ^ a b c Amateur Baseball vol.29. Nikkan Sports Publishing. 2010. pp. 15–17. ISBN 978-4-8172-5498-6. 
  21. ^ 2015 プロ野球オール写真選手名鑑(Pro Baseball All-pictured player directory. Japan Sports Industry Publishing. 2015. p. 161. ISBN 978-4-905411-26-0. 
  22. ^ "注目選手:大野雄大 (Player Watch: Yudai Ono)". Retrieved 14 June 2016.  - Speed Navi
  23. ^ Baseball Apprentice October 2010 Edition、White Night Books、Magazine 18801-10、p160-163。
  24. ^ "虎ホレた!佛教大・大野151キロ菊池級 (Tiger lover! Bukkyo Uni, Ono; 151km Kikuchi-level)". Nikkan Sports (in Japanese). 17 November 2009. Retrieved 15 June 2016. 
  25. ^ a b ドラフト指名選手の野球人生ドキュメント(A document of the life of the drafted Ono) Baseball Apprentice October 2010 Edition、White Night Books、Magazine 67614-98、p90-95

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