As he heads to the major leagues, Lee Jung-hoo is getting more and more favorable reviews. MLB.com ranked Lee as the eighth-best pitcher in this year’s free-agent market.
MLB.com ranked the eighth-best outfielder in the 2023-2024 offseason free agent market on Saturday (KST).
After winning five batting titles and being named the regular season MVP for the first time in his career last year, Lee announced his entry into the major leagues through the posting system. After declaring his intention to enter the big leagues, he joined hands with Scott Boras, the Devil’s Agent, and made all the preparations to enter the major leagues. And on the 15th of this month, he received an ‘identity check’ from the Major League Baseball office, so he is now close to the major leagues.굿모닝토토 도메인
Multiple media outlets in the U.S. are currently predicting that Lee will be posted after the Thanksgiving (Nov. 24-27) holiday. Considering that Kim Ha-seong, the most recent player to reach the major leagues through the posting system, signed with the San Diego Padres after posting in late November, it is likely that Lee will receive offers from 30 major league teams before long.
Despite the fact that the post hasn’t been published yet, interest in Lee is very high. Speaking to local media at the Major League Baseball owners’ meetings in Scottsdale, Arizona, Boras revealed that more than half of the big league clubs have inquired about Lee. The San Francisco Giants and New York Yankees are currently considered the most likely destinations for Lee.
Samsung and Kiwoom play against each other during the ‘2023 Shinhan Bank SOL KBO League’ at Gocheok Sky Dome on October 10, 2023 in Seoul, South Korea. Kiwoom’s Lee Jung-hoo greets fans after the game after coming on as a pinch-hitter in the bottom of the eighth inning./My Daily
The game between Samsung and Kiwoom during the ‘2023 Shinhan Bank SOL KBO League’ at Gocheok Sky Dome in Seoul on October 10, 2023. Kiwoom’s Lee Jung-hoo sprinted to first base after hitting an infield grounder in the bottom of the eighth inning./MyDaily
Of course, the lid has to be lifted, but at this point, it seems likely that Kim will be rewarded with a bigger contract than the one that brought him to the big leagues. CBS Sports in the U.S. expects Lee to sign a six-year, $90 million (KRW 11.66 billion) contract with San Francisco that includes an opt-out, while The Athletic, ESPN, and Major League Trade Rumors (MLBTR) are predicting a contract worth more than $50 million (KRW 64.8 billion).
Now that Major League Baseball has finalized its decision on whether to accept a qualifying offer (QO), the stalking season has begun in earnest, and MLB.com has ranked the top 10 free agents on the market. Shohei Ohtani took the top spot, followed by Cody Bellinger, who rebounded from an extremely poor season, J.D. Martinez at No. 3, Jorge Soler at No. 4, Matt Chapman at No. 5, Teoscar Hernandez at No. 6, and Rhys Hawkins at No. 7.
“The biggest unknown on this list is Lee Jung-hoo,” said MLB.com, “who was posted by the Kiwoom Heroes and was expected to come to the major leagues from South Korea. At just 26 years old, Lee has a compelling all-around skill set, a great record in the KBO, and even a notable baseball legacy. His father is legendary Korean shortstop Lee Jong-beom, nicknamed the ‘Son of the Wind,’ so Lee is known as the ‘Grandson of the Wind.’”
Lee is ranked eighth on the list because he has yet to showcase his skills in the major leagues. “No one knows how Lee’s talent will translate to the majors,” said MLB.com. With the exception of Ohtani, Lee could be ranked higher than the others, but for now, he’s settled in at the end of the top 10.”
It’s clear that there aren’t many “big-name” resources in the free agency market this year. However, this is helping to put Lee in a good position in the free agent market rankings. With all the good things being said about him, it’s time to find out what uniform he’ll be wearing. Lee will soon be heading to the United States to conduct open workouts for major league teams at Bora Corporation’s training center.