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Lee Seung-yeop Ready to Go to Major Leagues with Asia Homerun Record

Lee Seung-yeop Ready to Go to Major Leagues with Asia Homerun Record

Posted October. 03, 2003 23:12,   


Lee Seung-yeop, now a free agent player after concluding this season, has no barriers for entering the Major Leagues. The negotiation is supposed to start as soon as the post-season is finished with Major League teams.

The value of Lee Seung-yeop is a increasing due to his new Asia home run record which he captured on October 2. His agency SFX sent the prepared data to main foreign news such as AP, Reuter after he hit his record breaking home run. That evening, foreign news groups played a role of “an acting advertisement” with detailed reports based on the data.

Agent John Kim, who stayed the night at Lee’s home, in an interview on October 3rd said, “Sports Illustrated (SI) called for an interview with Lee last night. There is a lot of interest from the U.S.”

During negotiations with Major League teams, SFX will focus on promoting Lee’s new home run record as much as possible. Kim said, “Ten teams are currently showing interest in Lee Seung-yeop, and more teams will be interested later on.”

It is rumored that Lee Seung-yeop has already decided on the team out of these 10 with for which he wants to play.

Kim said, “Lee told me his preferred team, but I can’t discuss it. The negotiations will be disadvantaged if the team is known.” The Los Angeles Dodgers and the Seattle Mariners, which have openings in their first base position and have a lot of Korean residents in the U.S., are considered as the strongest candidates.

Now the attention shifts to how well Lee Seung-yeop will perform with his new Major League team. Samsung Lions manager Kim Ung-ryong said, “He is able to do as much as Japanese hitter Hideki Matusi did.” Matsui had a 0.287 batting average, hit 16 home runs with 106 runs this year in his debut in the Major Leagues for the New York Yankees.

Matsui hit fewer home runs that was expected, but the batting coach of Samsung and Lee’s mentor, Park Heung-sik, suggested, “He would be more effective if he concentrates on his batting average rather than being too eager to hit home runs. He should change his style to become a medium-long ball hitter.”

Sang-Soo Kim ssoo@donga.com