The dreaded “ML TOP-class” batting speed behemoth “If I get a feeling, I’ll keep sending him out” [★Secret Scene]

‘Jamsil Big Boy’ Lee Jae-won will start at home against KT Wiz. LG manager Yoon Kyung-yeop expressed his confidence in Lee Jae-won, saying,바카라 “If I get a feel for him, I’ll keep him out there.”

The LG Twins open their 2023 Shinhan Bank SOL KBO League home season against the KT Wiz at 6.30pm on 5 May at Jamsil Baseball Stadium in Seoul. With the previous day’s game (4 April) cancelled due to rain, neither KT nor LG made any changes to their starting lineups. KT started foreign pitcher Wes Benjamin and LG started homegrown ace Im Chan-kyu.

Prior to the game, LG and KT also revealed their starting lineups. LG’s starting batting order was Hong Chang-ki (right fielder), Lee Jae-won (left fielder), Kim Hyun-soo (designated hitter), Austin (first baseman), Park Dong-won (catcher), Moon Bo-kyung (third baseman), Kim Min-sung (second baseman), Son Ho-young (third baseman), and Park Hae-min (centre fielder). On the other hand, KT went with Kim Sang-soo (shortstop), Kim Min-hyuk (left fielder), Alford (designated hitter), Park Byung-ho (first baseman), Hwang Jae-gyun (third baseman), Kang Hyun-woo (catcher), Park Kyung-soo (second baseman), Ahn Chi-young (right fielder), and Bae Jeong-dae (middle infielder).

LG also left Oh Ji-hwan out of the starting lineup, favouring right-handed hitters. Speaking to the media ahead of the game, Yeom said, “From now on, the backups of all teams will be important. We had Kim Min-sung in April and Shin Min-jae in May when our main players were out with injuries. I was hoping Lee Jae-won would be a little better in June, but he didn’t hit very well. Now we’re approaching a time when Kim Min-sung, Lee Jae-won, and Son Ho-young will be crucial,” he said.

“The role of the backup players is very important during the hot season. It’s important for the backup players to play a role in the team while the main players are resting. This is the time of year when stamina drops a lot and injuries happen the most.”

One notable change in the LG line-up was the return of Lee Jae-won to the starting line-up. The Jamsil outfielder has appeared in 32 games this season, batting .185 (65-for-12) with three home runs, 12 RBIs and an OPS of 0.645. Jae-Won Lee has been used primarily as a pinch-hitter lately, but was given the opportunity to start tonight. Benjamin has a .246 batting average against lefties and a .281 batting average against righties this season. It’s been 13 days since Lee Jae-won made his first start since the 22nd of last month against the NC. Moon Sung-ju, who has been the mainstay of the line-up in place of Lee Jae-won, will start the game off the bench.

Yoon said, “Lee Jae-won and Son Ho-young trained a lot in the month of June with the hitting coaches. They had a lot of batting practice indoors because they didn’t have much time on the field and it was hot. They would come out early to train before the game and stay late to train after the game. The hitting coaches worked really hard to get her to hit well. I hope the results of our training will show in the games in July and August. I hope that the training will lead to results.”Lee Jae-won was moved up to the No. 2 spot on the day, forming a table-setting pairing with Hong Chang-ki. “I thought it would be good for her to hit at least one more time, so I put her at number two in the batting order, and she was fine against Benjamin,” said Yeom. Lee Jae-won has been very good against Benjamin this season, going 2-for-2 with a double, a home run, and an RBI. “If Lee Jae-won keeps up his form in July and August, he’ll get more and more playing time,” Yoon said. Then Park Hae-min, Hong Chang-ki, and Moon Sung-joo can take turns resting,” he said.

Yeom has high hopes for Lee Jae-won in particular. Even before he took over as head coach this season, he noted his long-hitting ability. “He’s a player who’s going to be big when he breaks out,” Yeom said of Lee, “I think he’s a beast whose potential is on the verge of breaking out in many ways, including his physical condition and hitting mechanics.” Yeom often compares Jae-won to Park Byung-ho (now KT Wiz), who he played with when he was the Heroes’ manager.

“Lee Jae-won has the ability to make good contact, as long as he hits the ball in the centre of the bat, he can be a three-hitter. He has a good swing line and batting quality. Above all, he has the power and swing speed to generate bat speeds of over 170km/h. (His bat speed) is the fastest. It’s one of the best in the major leagues,” he said. And indeed, it is. In a home game against the KT Wiz on 17 May, Lee hit a three-run double with the bases loaded in the bottom of the fourth inning, with a bat speed of 181.8 kilometres per hour. It was one of the highest in the major leagues. Can Lee Jae-won continue to build on this performance?

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