As Lee Jeong-hoo makes his way to the major leagues, the local U.S. media continues to evaluate him. While there is praise, there are still question marks.
The Jays Journal, a Toronto-based media outlet, said on Nov. 19 (KST), “We weighed in on how the 13 free agents mentioned by The Athletic would fit into the Toronto organization as it prepares for the 2024 season.” Lee was mentioned as the No. 6 player.
In 884 career games, Lee has a .340 batting average with 1,081 hits, 65 home runs, 515 RBIs and 581 runs scored. Last year was his best year yet, as he won five batting titles and was named the regular season Most Valuable Player (MVP).굿모닝토토 도메인
This year, he batted .318 with 105 hits, six home runs, 45 RBIs, a .406 OPS and an .861 slugging percentage in 86 games, although he was unable to play full-time due to ankle surgery.
Lee is on the verge of breaking into the major leagues. He is currently working with Scott Boras, aka the Devil’s Agent, to prepare him for the major leagues.
Even though the post hasn’t been published yet, interest in Lee is high. The San Francisco Giants and New York Yankees are currently the favorites to land him.
With that being said, Lee could be a good fit for Toronto. Toronto is one of the teams in need of reinforcements. “With the departures of Matt Chapman, Kevin Kiermaier, and Brandon Belt, the team’s priorities are at third base, outfield, and designated hitter,” the outlet noted.
Lee’s name was then mentioned. “Lee is a star outfielder from South Korea who played for the Kiwoom Heroes in the KBO last year. “He is known as a solid contact hitter who rarely strikes out,” the article continued, “and is looking to showcase his talents in the Major Leagues, following in the footsteps of players like Ryu Hyun-jin and Kim Ha-seong.
He also pointed out his shortcomings. He lacks long ball power. “Aside from a breakout year of 23 home runs in 2022, Lee has averaged only seven home runs a season in six of his seven career years, so he hasn’t shown much power,” the outlet wrote.
Still, there’s a reason he’s a good fit for Toronto.
“It may be difficult to predict how much power he will have in the majors. But it’s worth the risk. Toronto is looking to bolster its offense without weakening its defense, which is where a player like Lee fits in.”
Topping the list is free agent slugger Cody Bellinger. Bellinger has had a spectacular resurgence this season, hitting .307 (153-for-499) with 26 home runs, 97 RBI, 96 runs scored, 20 doubles, a .356 OPS and an .881 slugging percentage.