Japan outfielder Seiya Suzuki of the Chicago Cubs has been ruled out of the March 8-21 World Baseball Classic, Nippon Professional Baseball said Tuesday.

The 28-year-old missed the Cubs' spring training game with the San Francisco Giants on Saturday due to tightness in his left oblique and also the club's training on Sunday before undergoing a thorough examination.

In their own announcement, the Cubs said additional details about Suzuki's injury and spring training status would come at a later date. Cubs manager David Ross said he wasn't ready to discuss what the injury might mean for Suzuki or Chicago's Opening Day roster.

Suzuki, part of Samurai Japan's 2017 WBC roster, batted cleanup at the Tokyo Olympics in 2021 as the host country won the gold medal. The all-round former Hiroshima Carp player was expected to be one of the key members for Samurai Japan skipper Hideki Kuriyama next month.

Hanshin Tigers outfielder Koji Chikamoto is being floated as a potential replacement.

Suzuki, 28, hit .262 for Chicago last season with 14 home runs and 46 RBIs in 111 games.