“Korean style!” Dae-ho Lee receives ‘chi’ from Japanese hitting master, repays him by finishing him off

Lee Dae-ho attended the Nippon Professional Baseball 2023 game between the SoftBank Hawks and the Chiba Lotte Marines at the Fukuoka PayPay Dome in Fukuoka, Fukuoka Prefecture, Japan, on July 27 (ET). The Hawks won the game 6-5 on a come-from-behind hit in the 12th inning of extra innings.

Dae-ho Lee made a huge impact during his time with SoftBank in 2014 and 2015. In 2014, Lee hit .300 with 19 home runs, 68 RBIs, 60 메이저놀이터 runs scored and a .816 OPS in 144 games, helping SoftBank win the Japan Series. The 2015 season was arguably Lee’s year.

In 141 regular-season games, Lee hit .282 with 31 home runs, 98 RBIs, 68 runs scored and a .892 OPS. In the Japan Series against the Yakult Swallows, he replaced Seichi Uchikawa, who suffered a broken rib, in the No. 4 spot in the lineup and put on a “one-man show” with 16 hits, eight RBIs and two home runs in five games. His eight RBIs, tied for the most in the series, earned him the title of Japan Series MVP, the first Korean player to win the title.

After the 2015 season, Lee signed a contract with the Seattle Mariners of Major League Baseball and no longer played for SoftBank. But SoftBank hasn’t forgotten about him, and invited him to join the team for the 85th anniversary of the club’s founding and the 30th anniversary of the PayPay Dome’s opening. Lee will throw out the ceremonial first pitch before SoftBank and Chiba Rodeo meet on April 28.

Prior to the ceremonial pitch, Lee visited Fukuoka to reunite with his former teammates on the 27th. The news of Lee’s visit to the PayPay Dome brought out all of SoftBank’s “superstars. Yuito Mori, who has a career record of 24-24, 105 wins, 127 saves, former manager Koji Akiyama, who was the manager in Lee’s first season with SoftBank, and former first-team hitting coach Yuya Hasegawa, who played with Lee.

Among the many personalities, Yuki Yanagita, nicknamed “the batting master,” was the one who welcomed Lee the most. Yanagita has played in 1296 career games with 1425 hits, 246 home runs, 159 doubles, and a batting average of 0.315, and has represented Japan several times. He is especially known for being a role model for Lee Jung-hoo (Kiwoom Heroes).

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