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Baseball Slugger Lee Prepping for Next Season

Posted January. 29, 2008 07:32,   

한국어

“Precise batting with faster speed!”

Yomiuri Giants cleanup hitter Lee Seung-yeop stepped up his winter training at Sejin Health Center in Daegu Sunday. He started his month-long training on December 26 last year, three weeks later than usual, due to an operation on his left thumb.

Center owner Oh Jang-hoon said, “Lee Seung-yeop is already a well-built player, and is focusing on strengthening his back and abdominal muscles to enhance his ability to concentrate power. He is stronger now than he was last year.”

Lee has run three kilometers to the center from his home daily since the start of this year. It initially took him 26 to 28 minutes, but he cut the time to 17 minutes after finalizing his training. Running at an average hourly speed of 10.5 kilometers, he enhanced his endurance and speed.

He has also changed to a bat with a thicker grip for the first time in his 14 seasons. The change in grip involves no change in weight, and is designed to control swings more precisely.

Oh said Lee took extra care of his diet, counting calories of the food he ate. Lee’s efforts helped him maintain his weight at 95 kilograms during the season.

This year will be a challenging year for the slugger with the arrival of Alex Ramirez from the Yakult Swallows. Ramirez hit 29 homeruns and 124 RBIs and thus will compete for Lee’s fourth spot in the batting order.

Lee will also be cleanup hitter for the Korean national team in the second qualifier for the Beijing Summer Olympics in Taiwan from March 7-14.

He will leave for Japan Tuesday and join Yomiuri’s training camp in Miyazaki Friday to focus on technical training.



beetlez@donga.com