Three MLB-based position players on the Samurai Japan roster, including new Boston Red Sox outfielder Masataka Yoshida, began their spring training Monday with the March 8-21 World Baseball Classic looming large.

Chicago Cubs outfielder Seiya Suzuki and St. Louis Cardinals outfielder Lars Nootbaar also started to train before joining their national team in Japan in early March, along with Los Angeles Angels two-way star Shohei Ohtani, who began his preseason training with his team last Wednesday.

"I'm happy seeing everyone wearing the same jersey and starting without trouble," said Yoshida after his first day of team training at the Red Sox. "There are lots of things I need to get into my head, and I'm hoping to have good communication along the way."