The year 2023 of Lee Jung-hoo (25‧ Kiwoom), the best hitter in the KBO League, is passing rather gloomily. At the beginning of the season, he had a hard time because his hitting feeling was not good, and after his hitting feeling revived, a fairly big injury came.
In fact, for Lee Jung-hoo personally, 2023 was a year with a lot of goals. First of all, we decided to challenge the major leagues through the posting system (private competitive bidding) at the end of this season. Many clubs have already watched Lee Jung-hoo’s growth process from 4 to 5 years ago. The most grand box office front in the history of Korean player posting is scheduled. For Lee Jung-hoo, this season was the last showcase before advancing to the major leagues.
It wasn’t just a personal honor. During the camp before the season, Lee Jung-hoo said that he would postpone the idea of advancing to the major leagues until after the season. First of all, it was the determination to run toward the challenge of the presidency of the team Kiwoom this year. Last year, unfortunately, I stayed in the runner-up in the Korean Series, so my desire and greed were stronger. As this is the last season before going to the major leagues, I hoped to leave with a smile and good memories.
However, due to an unexpected ankle injury that came suddenly, many of them are on the verge of becoming nothing. Of course, this is Lee Jung-hoo, who has already accumulated enough scouting reports. It is unlikely that this injury will become a major obstacle to advancing to the major leagues. However, it is true that he missed the opportunity to show that he made up for his shortcomings. His team, Kiwoom, is also drifting amid Lee Jung-hoo’s injury and the sluggishness of its key players. As of the 28th, it is at the bottom of the league with 47 wins, 69 losses and 3 draws (.405). In fact, it has announced that it will give up advancing to the postseason. For Lee Jung-hoo, this is the most painful.
It is Kiwoom who did not let go of the season despite the sluggishness at the beginning of the season. However, it is interpreted that the sudden change to this stance was related to Lee Jung-hoo’s injury at the end of July. Lee Jeong-hoo, who is scheduled to take three months to rehabilitate, will find it difficult to return within the season. He said that Kiwoom, who judged that it would be difficult to achieve good results without Lee Jung-hoo, boldly looked into the future. Lee Jung-hoo has grown into a player who influences a team’s short-term, mid- to long-term strategy.메이저사이트
While participation in the 2022 Hangzhou Asian Games has also become unclear, major league interest in Lee Jung-hoo has not cooled down. It is known that many clubs have completed the final evaluation of Lee Jung-hoo to some extent. Big market clubs representing the major leagues are also said to be reviewing the market situation. Now, it is not that difficult to find Lee Jung-hoo’s name even in the local media. Tied to the 2023-2024 transfer market class. In general, the opinion of the local media agrees that he is a player within the ‘TOP 30’.
Lee Jung-hoo’s name has also begun to be mentioned in the list of recruit candidates for the New York Yankees, the most prestigious club in the major leagues, which is in the worst slump this season. On the 27th (Korean time), the largest local media, ‘The New York Post’, dealt with the team’s expected future moves regarding the future of Harrison Bader, the team’s outfielder. At the same time, the ‘New York Post’ mentioned Lee Jung-hoo’s name as one of the outfield recruitment targets.
Bader, who debuted in St. Louis in 2017 and was traded to the New York Yankees in 2022, is an outfielder who uses passionate play as a weapon. The defense has always received good reviews. He is a 2021 Gold Glove winner. However, in his offense, the ups and downs are especially severe this year. He has a batting average of 0.246 and an OPS (on-base percentage + slugging percentage) of 0.661 in 80 games until the 28th. It is unknown whether the Yankees will catch Bader as he will qualify as a free agent (FA) at the end of this year.
With Vader gone, a new outfielder is needed. ‘New York Post’ said, ‘If the Yankees decide not to bring Bader back, the outfield of the free agent market is not full of alternatives.’ It is expected to be very popular. In addition, Lee Jung-hoo, a Korean star who is expected to appear in the offseason, and veteran Kevin Kiermeier pointed out that Michael Taylor is likely to land (on the Yankees).
In fact, this year’s free agent market is not on the side of many special outfielders. Rather less than usual. Major league trade rumors also said, “This year’s FA class is dominated by starting pitchers. It is expected that there will be very few hitters with an impact,’ and gave a positive evaluation, saying, ‘Assuming Lee Jung-hoo’s ankle recovers and he posts as scheduled, he will still attract a lot of attention.’
The Yankees have to do something. This is because despite spending so much money, they are staying at humiliating grades this year. As of the 28th, with a record of 62 wins and 68 losses (.477), the winning rate is less than 50% and is at the bottom of the American League East division. Your chances of making the postseason are now less than 5%. Immediately, director Aaron Boone’s move itself emerged as an issue. To appease angry fans, something needs to be reshuffled, and if Vader isn’t caught, an outfielder must be recruited. The Yankees outfield is not strong in depth. Theoretically, there is a good chance that Lee Jung-hoo will be interested in recruiting, and actual scouts have been watching Lee Jung-hoo for a long time.