Kim Tae-hyung’s words to the 34-year-old genius shortstop

“I want to hear the words, ‘Good trade.'”

A ‘genius’ shortstop in his prime. Now a veteran infield utility for Lotte. This is the current address of Lee Hak-joo (34).

Expectations were high for Lee when he returned to the KBO after seven years in the United States and two years in the independent league.

His high first-round selection (No. 2 overall) at the tender age of 29 is a testament to that. At the time, the No. 1 overall pick was Lee Dae-eun (retired), and the No. 3 pick was last year’s home run king, Noh Si-hwan (Hanwha). This is why KT and Samsung fans get sick to their stomachs just thinking about Lee Dae-eun and Lee Hak-joo.

They were traded for Choi Ha-neul and a rookie third-round pick (Seo Hyun-won of Samsung) to wear Lotte uniforms. The former ‘Muju Gongshan’ shortstop has been a staple in Lotte’s lineup, but his performance over the past two years has been disappointing to say the least. First, his batting averages were just 2-for-7 and 2-for-9. His OPS (on-base percentage + slugging percentage) is less than 0.6.

He first met Kim Tae-hyung at last year’s final camp. “He told me a lot of things that would help me in my athletic career,” Lee recalled. He also revealed his motivation. He is also eager to reclaim the reputation of ‘Clutch Lee,’ the most pleasant nickname he had from his Samsung days.

“The manager kept teasing me, ‘Hey, you’re a two-hitter!’ After hearing him say that a few times, I felt like my ass was on fire. In the new season, I want to raise my batting average and hit double-digit home runs, so I can get a spot in the infield.”

Thanks to manager Kim Tae-hyung’s encouragement, Lee activated the home run gun in the first game of this year’s spring training on the 16th. In the bottom of the sixth inning, he hit one over the right-field fence against Woo Kang-hoon. It was the first time in a long time.

Last year, I also had a bad crash during a race. He suffered from a headache for a while, but fortunately, he recovered well without any after-effects. “My teammates told me that I’ve gotten a little nicer since then,” he laughs.

There are two things that Lee is especially praised for by baseball fans. One is his “major league” speed, which allows him to get the ball out of his 카지노 glove faster than you can imagine, and the other is his exquisite sliding. His sliding technique is dazzling, as he freely changes his arm to match the direction of the slide and avoid the tag.

However, defense coach Kim Min-ho said, “He’s slower than I thought. Lee Hak-joo should be able to become a safety without having to ‘swim’ at some point.” It’s a good skill to have in really tight one-on-one situations, but there are only a few times a year when that happens. As a result, Lee explains, he needs to be more agile and sensitive.

“When I think about it, I think I craved every single at-bat, whether it was starting or pinch-hitting, and every chance to be a runner. I wanted to be safe somehow so they could use me next time. I felt like I wanted to play one more time. I want to do better this year, and I want to hear the fans say, ‘You got the right guy.'”


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *