Lee Jung-hoo, who signed a huge seven-year, $113 million contract with the San Francisco Giants, returned to Korea via Incheon International Airport on the 19th (Korea time) after completing his entire schedule in the U.S. On the same day, Incheon International Airport was crowded with fans to see Lee Jung-hoo.월카지노
Lee Jung-hoo declared his entry into the Major League through the posting system after the 2022 season. Lee Jung-hoo was not able to play the full-time season due to ankle surgery, but it was not an obstacle to making a leap to the Major League based on his performances in various international competitions and KBO leagues. Lee Jung-hoo joined hands with Scott Boras, the devil’s agent, to complete all preparations for entering the big league and applied for posting after the Korean Series (KS) schedule was over.
Major League teams have been enthusiastic about Lee Jung-hoo. The Major League this year was called a “holy season” as there were not many “special” players who could draw attention except for Shohei Ohtani, a man of 700 million dollars. However, this was rather an advantage for Lee. As the free agent market in the Major League was not good enough, players who moved to the Major League from Asia began to receive keen attention from Major League teams.
Lee Jung-hoo received attention from more than 20 teams even before he was posted. Among them, multiple clubs, including the San Francisco Giants, who were active enough to watch general manager Pete Putila visit Gocheok Sky Dome and train, as well as the New York Yankees, who showed interest since Lee Jung-hoo announced his entry into the Major League, and Kim Ha-sung’s success, began to pay great attention to Asian fielders.
As more teams competed for Lee Jung-hoo, Lee Jung-hoo’s ransom naturally rose, and the size of the contract exceeded everyone’s expectations. The U.S. media, which expected the highest ransom for Lee Jung-hoo, predicted a six-year, $90 million contract with San Francisco, which includes an opt-out clause, as “CBS Sports.” As “CBS Sports” predicted, Lee Jung-hoo wore a San Francisco uniform and included an opt-out clause, with the size of the six-year, $113 million contract. It was an all-time scale that no media had easily predicted.
So far, the biggest contract a Korean player signed when he entered the Major League was Kim Ha-sung (San Diego Padres), followed by up to $39 million (about 51 billion won) for 4+1 years, followed by “Korean Monster” Ryu Hyun-jin with 36 million dollars (about 47.1 billion won) for six years, and Lee Jung-hoo far exceeded the size of his seniors’ contracts. In addition, he beat Masataka Yoshida (Boston Red Sox, $90 million) as a fielder from Asia, and among Asian players, including pitchers, he was the second-best player ever after Masahiro Tanaka (Rakuten Golden Eagles)’ $155 million (about 202.8 billion won).
In particular, Lee Jung-hoo quickly became San Francisco’s “salary king” as he was guaranteed $113 million. The highest-paid player in the San Francisco squad this season was Jak Pederson, who headed to the free agent market. As a result, Lee Jung-hoo received an average of 18.33 million dollars per year, slightly beating Logan Webb and Michael Conforto, who receive an average of 18 million dollars per year, and becoming the best player.
Lee Jung-hoo was reportedly surprised to the point where he was so happy that he cradled his head and sank after being offered a contract worth more than $100 million from San Francisco. Lee Jung-hoo, who returned home through Incheon International Airport on the same day, said, “This was the first offer. I can’t reveal the details of the negotiations because it may not be polite to the team that negotiated with me, but it’s an honor to go to a good prestigious club called San Francisco.”
San Francisco was able to capture Lee Jung-hoo’s heart because it offered the largest contract, but San Francisco actively sent a love call to Lee Jung-hoo. In particular, general manager Pete Putilla’s visit to Gocheok Sky Dome played a big role. Lee Jung-hoo explained, “There were many clubs, but (Pit Putilla) came to Korea first. And I felt like I wanted the most when I negotiated. I can’t tell you in detail, but I made a quick decision because I thought it was an honor to play for a team with a long history.”
On the contrary, there is also a reason why San Francisco liked Lee Jung-hoo. It was that he changed his batting form to take it one step further from the “peak” stage. Lee Jung-hoo explained, “In the United States, people highly appreciate the change in batting form. I was told that I highly appreciate the efforts I made while making changes when I was doing best.”
Lee Jung-hoo said that his legs were relaxed due to a huge contract. “My legs were a little loose. In a way, compared to other seniors, my contract was completed quickly. I had mixed feelings,” he said. “Honestly, the story that my agent (Scat Boras) told me was more memorable than the expectation of the amount.”
Boras has a lot of connections with Korean Major Leaguers. He led “Korean Express” Park Chan-ho to the Major League and signed a five-year, 65 million-dollar contract with the Texas Rangers in early 2000 when he became an FA.