The name Lee Seung-yeop (47) has a huge presence in professional baseball. He has an influence that is difficult to explain with the modifier ‘national hitter’. He won MVP and home run king five times each in the KBO League. In 2003, he hit the most home runs (56) in one season in Asia at the time, becoming the protagonist of a national syndrome. He has established himself as the most beloved player in the history of professional baseball by playing a decisive role in various international competitions every time.
Lee Seung-yeop, who had a more splendid active career than anyone else, left the ground at the end of 2017. Afterwards, he worked as a public relations ambassador and commentator for the KBO and was away from the field for a while, but in the fall of last year, he broke everyone’s expectations and returned as a ‘director’. It also surprised the baseball world by climbing to the Doosan Bears command tower, not the Samsung Lions team.
Coach Lee Seung-yeop now opens the curtain on a new baseball life. On the 29th, he left for training camp in Black Town, Sydney, Australia with the Doosan team. It is the first spring camp conducted after taking up the command tower.
Director Lee, who we met at Incheon International Airport prior to departure, said, “I am away from home for a long time for the first time after retirement. Now I feel the reality that I have returned to baseball again,” he said, laughing awkwardly. To the fans who made a long line to see him, he smiled brightly, saying, “It feels like the fans are very welcoming because it’s an official outside schedule,” and “some of them are fans I’ve seen for years.”
Coach Lee received a hot spotlight after taking the lead at Doosan. However, the honeymoon period of his rosy dreams is over. Now is the time to show leadership in earnest. Doosan left behind the glory of advancing to the Korean Series for 7 consecutive years and fell to 9th place last year. In order to restore honor, the new commander’s charismatic leadership is desperately needed.
Director Lee said, “(Spring Camp) is an important time to prepare for the real battle. He wants to see the players with his own eyes, so he takes more people than usual.” He continued, “It’s about 40 days of battery training, but I’ll make it so that you can feel the satisfaction of going through about 50 to 60 days.”
Sydney, where Doosan is headed, remains a good memory for director Lee. It was Lee Seung-yeop who struck the final blow in the bottom of the 8th inning during the bronze medal match at the Sydney Olympics, which was played here 23 years ago against Korea and Japan. Coach Lee, who vividly remembers the cheers after defeating Daisuke Matsuzaka, the ace that Japan was proud of, said, “A lot of good things happened in Sydney. I want to receive good energy from this field training,” he said, “now I am a manager. Since play is the responsibility of the team, we will help the players focus on training without any worries.” 온라인바카라
Director Lee made ‘harmony of old and new’ his main task in this spring camp. He emphasized the importance of left-handed pitcher Jang Won-joon on the mound and shortstop Kim Jae-ho on the fielder. Both players are the best born in 1985. It is evaluated that his skills have fallen a little compared to his heyday, but he shares the beginning and end of the first-team field training. Director Lee Seung-yeop’s philosophy is that in order to rebuild a prestigious family, the performances of veterans and rookies must be well harmonized.
Manager Lee said, “Jang Won-jun is a player who has won 129 wins in the KBO League. He cannot ignore the dignity. No matter what position he takes, I hope he can be seen in the first team this season.” There are Kim Jae-ho, Lee Yu-chan, and Ahn Jae-seok, and I hope Kim Jae-ho, who has a lot of experience, will hold the center.”
In the sports world, there is a myth that ‘a star-turned-leader cannot become a great leader’. It means that the experience of rising to the top can be a burden to a leader who has to sweep through to the bottom. The same scarlet letter is attached to the name Lee Seung-yeop. However, Director Lee said, “I’ve heard that word so many times that it’s hard to get a ticket to sit on it.” But I will try to hit it once. All evaluations should be done properly after this season.”